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Model United Nations Conference

Get to know the MUN club initiatives straight from the club's secretary Finlay, who took some time off to reflect on his experience and activities.

Model United Nations (MUN) is an extracurricular club which mimics the real United Nations (UN). During both MUN and UN conferences, a select member is chosen to represent a country (a delegate) in one of many committees that deal with their own type of issue. At conferences, delegates are expected to wear formal attire and to speak in a formal manner (respectful and impersonal) as if we were in an authentic UN conference. Delegates write position papers to extend themselves to potential allies and have the option to write resolution papers to present to the conference as a response to the issue - by extension, they can also write and pass amendments by voting - all of which are incredibly similar to the real UN process.

At ISA, MUN is a student-run club, overseen by Cruz Ordonez - an English teacher at ISA who brings enthusiasm and focus to the club. At the moment, it is open to 9th to 12th graders (however 8th graders are welcome to come along before the beginning of next semester). Throughout the year the club attends various conferences.

Over the years, we’ve been to the Netherlands, St Andrews and smaller conferences in Aberdeen. However, these extend even further, one notably being in Greece. When planning for these events, we complete thorough research to develop a rich understanding of not only the issue at hand but also the country in which we represent. These might include laws, customs, religion, goals and allies. Delegates are also expected to align with the country’s values; which though difficult, immerses the delegate in a new culture, which is important in being global citizens.

A particular highlight of the year for the club was in March. We attended a 3-day conference with over 100 delegates at St Leonards International School in St Andrews. We confronted Social and Political Polarisation, in 6 different committees covering a broad range of perspectives. ISA brought 12 delegates, representing either China or Mexico, and to name just a few of our achievements, we had: four resolution papers passed unanimously by secretary Finlay, and Teela and Poppy, our president and vice president, Andrew and Pranav were voted best delegates in their committees and a myriad of amendments by all of our delegates, which was utmost positive.

The 12 delegates returned from the conference and have since reflected. Teela Murray reports: ‘It was not just an intuitive experience but something that allowed me to gain insight into an issue that I didn’t know much about before.’ Poppy Morton expands on some struggles we faced, ‘[our] communication skills were put to the test but we still came to a compromise.’ Jane Tang, a new delegate, found that she ‘settled in quickly to the new experience’ and ‘adapted to the fast-paced tempo of the formality and acquired new skills for my [her] argumentative writing and debate skills.’

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