Dear Friends and Faculty of HACIA Democracy,
Welcome to Harvard Association Cultivating Inter-American Democracy’s Twenty-Fourth Summit of the Americas! My name is Cristina Parajon, and I have the honor of serving as this year’s President, alongside the Vice-President Andrew O’Donohue. I am currently a third year student at Harvard University, studying Sociology and Government. I was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico but moved to the wonderful tropical Nicaragua when I was five years old. In Managua, I attended Nicaragua Christian Academy International and participated and won prizes as a delegate in HACIA XIV and HACIA XIII. In my senior year of high-school, I was a junior co-chair at HACIA XX for the Pan-American Health Organization and recipient of the Essay Award. After arriving at Harvard, I joined HACIA democracy and served various administrative functions in Harvard’s Model UN in Boston. In HACIA XXI I was co-chair of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in Spanish debating the informal labor market in Nicaragua. I served as the Recruiting Director for HACIA XXII and HACIA XXIII, creating new programs for the conference such as the Junior Recruiters Program, instructional videos program, and Art Challenge.
Through my experience at HACIA, from delegate to Recruiting Director, I have discovered I am fiercely passionate about democracy, debate, and social responsibility. I hope that each student will discover the same passion that I have discovered at HACIA and leave the conference with the tools to realize their leadership potential. Truly, the HACIA experience is a conference like no other: delegates spends months preparing for the conference and bring unique lived-experiences to the committee rooms; the Harvard chairs are some of the best and brightest of the university who share a commitment to Latin America and to teaching and mentoring; and our advisors often are venerated as educators, friends of the conference, and an unconditional support system for the board. Above all, those attending HACIA are committed to developing the youth of today who will become the leaders of tomorrow.
I look forward to meet everyone again after the successful conference in Panama City, Panama. Our next conference will take place March 8th to March 11th, 2018. Make sure to look out for announcements posted here, on our Facebook page, or through our mailing list in the coming month of when it will be. On behalf of the whole HACIA staff, we sincerely hope that you will be able to join us next year to face some of the most controversial questions of recent time facing Latin America. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me at [email protected] or to Lucas Cocco Development Director at [email protected]
All the best,
HACIA Democracy XXIV