Model United Nations finds success at Philadelphia conference


Dean Spitz

As first semester came to an end, the Model United Nations (MUN) team was preparing to attend one of the most renowned conferences in the world over the Jan. 26- 29 weekend. MUN traveled to Philadelphia for UPenn’s 33rd Ivy League Model United Nations Conference (ILMUNC).
MUN is an activity in which students simulate United Nations committees by roleplaying delegates. “MUN delegates get the chance to practice skills like diplomacy, compromise, social skills, public speaking and all around leadership and independent thought. MUN combines so many skills together into one wonderful social and academic experience,” senior president Aditya Iyengar said.
The team was assigned to 17 different committees, each debating a separate topic and discussing how best to deal with an issue. For example, sophomore Dimagi Kottage and junior Aileen Feng were in United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and debated the issue of the distribution of vaccines. “It was really fun discussing issues pertinent to the world today and trying to create comprehensive solutions to solve them,” Feng said.
The conference began on Jan. 26 around 7 p.m.. Delegates are given multiple topic choices, and decide on one topic they would like to discuss first. Committees then start formal debate.
On the first session of the second day, delegates form groups with other delegates, and begin working on resolution papers. During the second session, delegates continue writing papers and engaging in formal and informal debates. From 12-3 a.m. crisis delegates convene to discuss an emergency style topic for the night. Crisis delegates are forced to think on the spot, as they are not aware of what topics will be discussed during this night session.
On Saturday, delegates begin merging resolution papers with other groups in the first session. During the second session, groups draft final resolution papers. On Saturday night, students enjoy a delegate dance.
On the final day, committees vote on final draft resolutions and end discussions. The conference ends with an awards ceremony. Sixty-one percent of the school’s delegates received awards; Sophomores Shaily Acharya and Xiwei Peng, senior John Blick, junior Evan Ayoroa, senior Aditya Iyengar junior Shazia Ahmed and seniors Kate Garmer and Ornella Ihirwe Bayigamba received outstanding delegate awards. Sophomores Jenny Yarmovsky and Mina Senthil, juniors Young Sol Kim, Trent Folk and Aileen Feng, and sophomore Dimagi Kottage received honorable mentions. Junior Haley Zehrung, sophomore Ritika Naiknavare and senior Rachel Altman won verbal commendations.

Smriti Gupta

Front Page Editor