The Student News Site of Chatham University


The Student News Site of Chatham University


The Student News Site of Chatham University


World ready woman Mimi Huang speaks on working for the United Nations

Mimi Huang, a Reporting Officer at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, was invited as a guest speaker at Chatham University on January 10. Huang held two informational sessions for students and staff on United Nations Operations.

As an introduction, Huang gave a brief overview of her background and how she came to be a UN staff member. She informed the audience that she graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a first degree in Mechanical Engineering, and earned a graduate degree in Development Economics from the Latin American University of Social Sciences in Quito, Ecuador.

She is polyglot with proficiency in Spanish, Portuguese, French, Mandarin, Japanese; and she is currently studying Arabic. Huang started her career in the private sector with Sony Laboratory in Tokyo.

Shortly thereafter, the Tokyo Office of United Nations Industrial Development Organization contacted her. Huang explained that she was then fortunate enough to move to others agencies and be exposed to a wide array of the United Nations activities.

In a span of five years, she occupied various positions in the UN system including a 15 month field assignment in Timor-Leste which allowed her to observe first hand the complexity of United Nations operations on the ground, while considerably broadening her skills.

Huang emphasized that working in the United Nations requires versatility, people-oriented skills, sensitivity and capacity to adapt to a multicultural environment, and willingness and mental readiness to face potential hardship conditions.

Ms. Huang briefly discussed the bureaucratic nature of the organization, and highlighted that contrary to common belief, the United Nations does not make decisions independently from its members.

The organization is the world platform for discussion and consensus building and it does not have enforcement capacity for the respect of decisions taken. Only the Security Council, which is mandated to maintain peace and security, can carry out its decisions by making them mandatory on member states.

Ms. Huang stressed that working for the United Nations opens the door to  knowledge and cultural diversity, while giving a sense of responsibility and hope that the world can be a better place.


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