first whole-school House MUN competition

Wednesday April 20, 2022

Earlier this term, Concord students organised and ran their own Model United Nations (MUN) competition. Sixth Form students from the College’s MUN Society organised a whole-school event involving students from every year group. Almost everyone took part, including 350 students who were active participants as delegates in committee meetings and a number of others who contributed by creating position papers, whilst some members of 6.2 were organisers and United Nations officials. The last Concord MUN, in summer 2021, was organised amongst the current 6.2 students (then 6.1) and spurred them to want to share the experience with the school as a whole. Holding an MUN on such a scale took a lot of logistical planning. Most of the delegates were new to MUN and so the experienced sixth-formers mentored younger students. Kenneth in 6.2 who is Student Head of MUN at Concord - and who for the event took the role of Secretary-General of the UN - noted the hard work and cooperation needed to run the event. He said: “I think it was also quite good to see different year groups and groups working together. For example, the mentor system means 6.2s interact with lower years. Also, SpeakSoc helped out by holding introductory sessions on MUN for people who wanted to know more about it before the conference.” Each Tutor group became a national delegation and then decided who would prepare for and attend which committee. Form 3 students participated in meetings of the Disarmament and International Security Committee, Human Rights Council, Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee, Economic and Financial Committee, UNICEF and the UN Framework for Climate Change. Other year groups had additional committees to cover including those looking at security, science and technology, legal issues, refugee support, gender equality and a special 2010 Crisis Committee which was a particular highlight for the organising team. The 2010 Crisis Committee had to tackle unseen topics with additional developments fed into the committee as the discussions progressed. This including input from actors, both in person and as video recordings. The participants enjoyed the challenge of discussing things in a real-life context and having to adapt and find solutions on the spot. The format of this committee meant that delegates had to rely on their awareness of global politics and news. The MUN also had a competitive element, with Tutor groups’ efforts counting for their House, and therefore House points. The Form 3 round was won by Pankhurst with Teresa in second place, Form 4 and 5 was won by Mandela and Gandhi came second. In the Sixth Form round, Pankhurst again beat Teresa. Bonus points were awarded for helpers and submissions, and when all of the points from all three rounds plus the extra points were totalled, Mandela emerged as winners from a very close competition. Summing up, Kenneth added: “As Secretary-General of the conference, I would like to extend a massive thank you to my team of Secretariat. Without their dedication and hard work, this would not have been at all possible. And all the staff at Concord College who were involved into making this as smooth and successful as I could ever hoped for. “I am super proud and I hope with a solid foundation, Concord's House MUN can continue to strive for years to come!”