Model UN Students Tackle Global Issues

Twenty-four Concordia high school students participated in the Model United Nations (MUN) ASA (after school activity) this fall, culminating in a keynote conference held this past Saturday, joined by schools from around Hanoi and the region. 

“My favorite part of any MUN experience is seeing the various solutions delegates propose. It's great to see the opinions and reasoning of different delegates and how the status of their country affects what they support,” said Phebe (G11).

Representing a particular country at the conference, students wrote and presented resolutions to diplomatic and environmental problems from the perspective of their selected nation.

“The MUN Conference was very fun and interesting. Though at first it was a bit chaotic when everyone was trying to combine resolutions. In the end, everything worked out and everyone had an amazing time,” said Tyson (G9).

MUN is an opportunity for students to learn basic political science and geopolitical concepts - and hone their presentation and communication skills. Students learned about the history of the UN, how to speak publicly, how to engage an audience on a contentious issue, and how to write policy statements. For many Concordia students, it was their first MUN experience, so the advice of their seasoned peers paid off.
“Attending my very first UNISMUN conference, it was very entertaining to watch all the different delegates ‘battle it out’ to have their merged resolution pass. Unfortunately, our group resolution didn't pass but I still learned a lot from my fellow delegates,” said Hung (G11).
“We got to be ‘in the shoes’ of diplomats, seeing the world from a diplomat's perspective, and experiencing how they work to solve myriad problems," said Preston (G9).

“The teachers and student leaders have been amazing at tweaking our written work so that it comes across well and reflects our opinions on the issue from the standpoint of the country we are representing. The class allowed everybody to discuss topics back-and-forth with one another, but in a warm and friendly environment, which made MUN a fun and pleasant experience,” Preston added.
“I could see the new students were enthusiastic about learning how Model United Nations works. We started off with introducing the UN, then we started writing policy statements, opening speeches, and eventually the resolutions. I feel very proud and want to thank all my delegates who came to the meeting every week to prepare the enormous amount of work we have to get done before the conference. I really hope this conference will be a good experience to improve and gain interest in debating and global issues,” said Yu Hyeon (G11).
“Working with delegates of my generation really opened my eyes and refreshed me. Being in a group of people who want to promote change in our society has influenced me in ways beyond compare,” said Karin (G11). 
“It was a very nice experience to be able to meet delegates from all across Vietnam and even some foreign ones while debating about topics that I am passionate about such as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I also thoroughly enjoyed the preparation phase, during which I was able to see a lot of new Concordia delegates demonstrate their immense talents as they took the first steps on their MUN journey," said An (G12).
“Weekly MUN conferences brought new and interesting topics to my attention and offered a chance to share opinions as representatives of each country. Participating in UNISMUN also allowed all of us to practice and improve our public speaking skills,” said Yeseul (G11).

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