HS Model United Nations is a debate club, where each student competitor represents a delegate from a country and creates a resolution that addresses the respective country’s issue, after debate.
Model United Nations values the skill of cooperation in its members, as it is crucial to be able to work avidly with others in order to resolve the issues at hand. Background knowledge is not necessary, but rather the motivation to do well along with some communication skills. However, members are free to participate in any conferences they wish to.
In order to prepare members for the upcoming conferences, MUN hosts a number of preparatory activities.
“Before you go to the conference, you research a lot about your country and topic, so when you go in.. you try to get people on your country side and then you try to form resolutions and create groups of people who have similar views and try to persuade other groups to join you”, said Sophya Diwan, one of the Activities Directors of MUN.
Some specific activities MUN hosts to train its members for conferences include, mock conferences — which help members understand what the structure of real conferences are. Gauntlets allow officers to quiz members on their extent of knowledge of their research. Mock caucuses are short debates on certain topics that may appear in committees, while mock crises allow members to react to certain developments in the issue at hand.
At the conferences themselves, members represent a country and debate a topic in a committee. Each conference has multiple committees, such as the World Health Organization or the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. Each conference has crisis committees as well, which usually simulate an event, such as the Roman Civil War, according to junior Naomi Ho, the outreach director of MUN.
“In general, when you’re debating a topic, you’re trying to find a solution..there’s the whole aspect of not only debating, but building on ideas and writing resolutions….there’s a lot of writing, critical thinking, and cooperation involved as well”, said senior Timothy Fu, president of Model United Nations.
Model United Nations has a different environment, compared to other debate clubs.
“(MUN) is very collaborative.. In other debate clubs, you come together and form a stance and take down the other group.. But in model UN it’s about coming together and seeing what you have in common rather than about taking other people down”, said Naomi Ho.
HHS MUN’s success is due largely in part to the dedication of its members, and the sense of community within the club, Ho said.
“The community (makes us successful).. We are really supportive of each other,” Ho said.