On Saturday, 16 November, Leesville’s Model UN team held their first conference at the UNC center for education in Chapel Hill. The organizers of the conference gave a quick powerpoint about the structure of the competition before beginning.
Each chair in the room had a placard with a name of the country that each student was assigned weeks before the conference. Students were expected to complete background research on their assigned country and it’s stance/connection to Syria; the topic being discussed.
“A ton of the people had already had written paragraphs and pages of prepared information but they did let you look stuff up on your phone,” said Sarah Hudak, secretary of Leesville’s Model UN team.
The room was organized in a formal setting with half of the desks facing the other half, providing an environment conducive for discussion and debate.
“It was completely different than I thought. First of all, I thought that we were going to be at the college but we were in a smaller room. They split us in half we were all just facing each other,” said Hudak.
For a majority of students, this was their first time participating in Model UN. The conference was slightly informal in order to train the students and enlighten them on the happenings of Model UN.
“I thought that we were all going to be really nervous because it was our first conference ever, but a lot of people were there, and it was kinda like we were all in the same boat,” said Hudak.
All of the students learned a lot about the formal procedures practiced at these conferences as well as gained a better understanding of the issues in Syria– the discussion topic.
“It was completely opposite from what I thought it was going to be but it was still an awesome experience,” said Hudak.
They had a great time and will continue to practice the procedures they learned in this conference for many conferences to come.