Ifeoluwa Aiyelabowo, ’15
The BHSEC Model United Nations team was recently put to the test at the Harvard Model United Nations (HMUN) conference. At HMUN, which ran from January 30th to February 2nd, the BHSEC team broke apart as individuals or pairs joined particular councils. Within those councils, Bardians tackled many issues being discussed at the United Nations today, such as the emergence of the global middle class and the societal effects of 3-D technology.
The conference was very tiring, as it required the Model U.N. team to start debating as early as 9 A.M. until as late as 6:15 P.M. Many BHSEC Model United Nations members were not even able to remain awake in the later days of the conference without drinking large amounts of caffeinated drinks. During the conference, students debated in General Assembly Committees, Economic and Social Committees, and Regional Bodies Committees. In these committees, BHSEC Model United Nations members had to debate their way in order to get their voices heard, competing against rival schools such as the Horace Mann School and the Dalton School.
Although the conference was held at the Sheraton Boston Hotel, where the vast majority of conference participants slept, the BHSEC Model United Nations team decided to sleep in the Marriott Hotel, right across the street, due to accommodation issues.
All in all, the BHSEC Model U.N. team thought that the conference was a very fun and interesting experience. Bardians were able to make friends with people from all over the world, mingling with their counterparts from countries like Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Turkey, China, India, France, and the United Kingdom. Numbers and emails were exchanged, Facebook friend requests were sent, and postcards and ornaments were traded.
At the closing ceremony, the Secretary General of BHSEC’s team, Y2 Conrad Taylor, won the Outstanding Delegate award from his committee. The fact that a BHSEC Model U.N. member won such a prestigious award was amazing, especially considering that he debated against coached students. Unfortunately, the BHSEC Model U.N. team is just a student-run team that does not have a coach. However, the team has advisors like Mr. Benjamin Mikesh, a physics teacher, and Mr. Harold Respass, the Alumni Relations and Communications Director at BHSEC. Mr. Respass, commonly known as Harold, was a Model United Nations member in college, so he was able to give advice to the BHSEC team before they left for the conference.
Conrad’s award was not just an individual accolade, but beneficial to the whole team in the long run. At Model U.N. conferences, the availability of countries to be represented by high school teams is determined by how they did at previous conferences. Thanks to the team’s success at HMUN, the BHSEC team was given the opportunity to represent Brazil and India at the upcoming Washington Area Model United Nations Conference in late March.