Interviewing Canadian Ambassador Mr. H.E. Guillermo E. Rishchynski
Finding Comfort in an Unexpected Place
By Stephanie Alamo & Tevaughn Grant, The School of Government and Public Administration
He spoke in "we" instead of "I" words. He made
us feel comfortable with his humor and his dignity.
His story was interesting before the interview. He
told us he wanted to become a teacher. His quote
about teaching was very interesting when he told
us "There is no greater satisfaction than to facilitate
engagement in teenagers in the classroom." Hmm.
He apparently wants to be a fun teacher.
He also was proud to say that he supported women's
rights and equality everywhere. This was important
to him as he twice said that he refused to allow women
Tevaughn Grant, Ambassador Mr. H.E. Guil ermo E. Rishchynski
to be undermined in their roles. He also told us
and Stephanie Alamo
about the misconceptions about the United Nations.
Ready yet nervous. Honored yet slightly confused.
"People think that the United Nations was created
Privileged yet somewhat under confident. These were to take us to heaven, but it actually was created to
some of the feelings we had when asked if we would keep us from hell."
meet and interview the Canadian Ambassador to
He also told us some insider stuff about his country's
the United Nations. Interview the Ambassador? Isn't position regarding the Russian involvement in
that for older, international people who know how to Ukraine. He said his country voted for sanctions
speak well in political discussion and who understand
against Russia. He continued by telling us that
all the problems in the world? Actually, we were
The United States and Canada are "bonded
told that this would not be that type of conversation.
communalities".
We were selected by our teachers to represent our
However, he said that there is a difference between
school, the School of Government and Public
the Canadian value of freedom and The United
Administration at Eastside High School in Paterson
States' value. Canada strongly values the good of
and interview the Ambassador. The target date to
the entire population while he thinks that The US
meet began to feel like a historical event: It was to
values the individual freedom and the focus on
be Thursday, March 27, 2014 at 5pm in Manhattan, individuality, more.
New York City, New York. That is in the heart of
International New York City. The excitement mounted. Ready? We learned to be by working with our
The tension began to grip us as well as the pride
teachers. Nervous? We let that go as soon as we
that were asked. Would we? Yes! Should we?
began to talk to the Ambassador. Honored? Yes,
Well, maybe. We began to prepare to meet this
we are and proud that we took full advantage of
illustrious person, Mr. H.E. Guillermo E. Rishchynski, the opportunity to meet a foreign dignitary.
Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the
Under confident no longer will we put barriers in
Mission of Canada to the United Nations.
front of ourselves before we even begin. Looking
back, we are grateful for the chance to meet and
Our preconceptions about the Ambassador were that speak to one of the leaders of Canada. Perhaps
he may be a stern, strict and overly formal person.
he feels the same way about meeting us. After all,
We were pleasantly surprised when we found him to
he did fulfill one of his dreams by engaging us
be calm and generous.
in conversation.
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