On 28th February, 14 pupils from Wellington College International Tianjin joined up with another 200 or so pupils from international schools across China and Korea to participate in MUNiSC’s three-day Model United Nations conference held in the opulent surroundings of Shangri-La, Qingdao. The central theme of the conference was, ironically, Making Inroads in Reducing Poverty.
Our pupils represented a number of diverse countries such as Afghanistan, China, Luxembourg, Nigeria, and South Sudan.
On this trip we were delighted to accommodate many pupils who were new to the Model United Nations format. It is a steep learning curve preparing, presenting and debating on global themes for the first time, especially when you are doing so with and against scholars from around the country, but the pay-off, when the challenges are faced, can be enormous.
Below, one of our pupils- Ezra from Year 12 tells us about his journey and initiation into the world of MUN.
Model United Nations, also known as MUN, is an academic activity that simulates conferences of the United Nations and teaches participants varied skills. Acknowledging the great opportunity recommended by Mr Roundell, I had the honour to attend such an activity – the three-day MUNiSC Conference in Qingdao – at the beginning of March.
Before this MUN trip, Ms Faba and some classmate told me some details. I am the delegate of Luxembourg and in the committee General Assembly 2, or G2. Therefore I had to choose one topic from G2 and write an opening speech and a resolution paper. Although I went to great pains to work on them, I was not confident because I had no idea of what the conference would be like, and trying to imagine it made me nervous.
However, my tension was gradually eased as I participated in the activity. On the first day, I did my opening speech along with other students in the same committee. While I made some mistakes during my speech, it is an essential experience for me because this was my first time to talk in front of so many people. Later, there was a period called lobbying & merging in which delegates should discuss their resolutions with each other. This was a great opportunity for me to get to know some excellent students from many different international schools in China. Through the discussion with them, I learned countless things and practised my teamwork skills.
In the other two days, delegates were debating on their resolutions in such a way that one delegate holds on the floor and others ask him or her questions. I was becoming more and more courageous amid this process as I was voicing my opinions more and more frequently. Through the repeated and intense negotiations on amendments, my speaking and critical thinking abilities were developed. In the last day I went on to the stage again and spoke against a resolution by another delegate; accordingly, his resolution did not pass owing to few people voting for it.
This experience proved to be extremely beneficial to me. I have learned multiple skills and got acquainted with some excellent peers at the conference. Due to such blessings, I have already planned to attend another MUN conference this year, and I also encourage other students to do so as well.