The club strives to bring students together to engage in student-led discussions concerning global development, including topics like public health disparities around the world and international relations issues like Brexit.
Baker Franklin, a dramatic arts and history major and the club’s treasurer, said he wants it to be a place for the free exchange of ideas and opinions.
“At a school like UNC, I feel like there’s a lot of places for discussion, but not a lot of them are really that open to all the ideas that people throw forward,” Franklin said. “What I really want this to be is a place for hashing out ideas and intelligent discussion that will actually make people look at problems differently and think differently.”
The club meets weekly at Dey Hall at 6 p.m. on Tuesdays. Currently, the club’s meetings consist of informal discussions on whatever the group is interested in. The club's leaders hope to expand to other events in the future, including social events and speakers from UNC and beyond.
Victor Ehrnrooth, an economics major and math minor and the club’s communications director, said that any and all majors are welcome to join the meetings.
“As opposed to being a super specific organization like a lot of these are, it’s more for people who want to contribute, but don’t necessarily know in what aspect specifically,” Ehrnrooth said, “It’s a very casual, discussion-based environment. When you think about global development, it really hits a lot of topics.”
Ehrnrooth said his initial involvement in the GDA was a happy accident. He first heard about the club through his friend, Bonomo.
Having lived in both Finland and Brazil for extended periods of time, Ehrnrooth said he appreciates the club as a global citizen and encourages others like him to get involved.
"If you’re interested in issues of political corruption, issues of human rights, issues of climate change, issues of economic development, issues of education, issues of public health, etc., etc., etc.," Ehrnrooth said. "I mean, it's very difficult to find somebody who is engaged with the world as a whole that wouldn't take an interest in global development."