MUN is a competition centred around students representing countries in a model United Nations. On 16th and 17th March, a group of Concord students travelled to Shrewsbury School to attend ShrewsMUN: the third annual MUN event they’ve held. This was my first official debate-style competition, and it was very exciting. We had to prepare for it in SpeakSoc sessions the weeks prior, as well as carrying out independent research for the topics.
When I first arrived at the event, I didn’t really know what to expect. It was quite intimidating, especially considering everyone was in formal-wear. It seemed very serious. When the actual procedure started, we were separated into our committees (I was part of the political committee for Venezuela). The pattern for most committees followed as such: First, we ‘lobbied’ within our committees to accumulate enough signatures for our clause to be up for debate. Then, the Chair would pick a clause and there would be speakers, as well as people who challenged the points being made. If amendments were suggested, there would be a debate about those too. Whether or not the amendments and clauses went ‘through’ was decided by voting. General Assembly is similar, but on a larger scale with multiple people representing each country and working together.
The goal of MUN is to represent your assigned country’s interests accurately, but also to do so eloquently and persuasively. Bonus marks were awarded for passing clauses. I was extremely nervous when it first started, but I grew more comfortable as I got to know people from other schools, and it became a really fun experience. The event welcomed students all the way from Year 7 to Upper Sixth, so it was great seeing so many people of different ages coming together with one simple thing in common: an interest in debate and politics. Overall, it was a fantastic experience and I definitely hope to compete next year as well.
Justin – F3