Rainer Turim, ‘18
The University of Pennsylvania hosted its 32nd Ivy League Model United Nations Conference (ILMUNC) from January 28th to 31st. BHSEC’s Model United Nations team attended the four-day conference and as expected, did not disappoint. The team went home with many awards Sunday evening. The conference was estimated to have 3,000 students in attendance. Schools came from all over the United States, and the world, to participate in the grand tradition of Model United Nations. Topics discussed at the conference included transparency in governments, protectionism, women rights in science, and much more.
BHSEC’s Year 1 Kira Carleton and 10th Grader Maya Rubin represented Barbados in Commission on the Status of Woman and received an “Outstanding Delegate” award. Likewise, Year 2 Max Neuman represented the First Vice President of Iran, Eshaq Jahangiri in the AdHoc Committee and received an “Outstanding Delegate” award. Sophomores Eli Frankel and Theo Spohngellert represented Lesotho in Economic and Financial Affairs Council and received an Honorable Mention. Sophomore Chris Stauffer and freshman Hanna Dobroszycki also represented Lesotho in the Special Political and Decolonization Committee and received a verbal commendation. Similarly, 9th Graders Ori Shaham and Beatrice Donovan received a verbal commendation for their representation of Lesotho in the Commission on Status of Women committee. It was a good conference for the BHSEC team.
Year 2, Liana Van Nostrand, who joined the club in her freshmen year at BHSEC, is the Secretary-General of the Model United Nations team. Van Nostrand was elated about this year’s ILMUNC experience, “I think this was our best conference to date. We have never been so successful in terms of awards at one of the top three most competitive conferences in the country. This is a huge victory for a small school with a studentrun club. I think it really speaks to how hardworking, articulate, and intelligent BHSEC students are.” Although Van Nostrand is sad to be leaving the club this fall, this year’s ILMUNC has shown her that she is “leaving the team in exceptionally capable hands.”
Neuman started Model United Nations in 10th grade. He will be leaving this fall along with his Year 2 peers for new horizons. Neuman called the Model United Nations experience ‘superb.’ Alas, Neuman is not happy to be leaving the community anytime soon, “After really struggling last year, it was an honor and a privilege not only to succeed in my own committee, but to be a part of a team that really shows how wellsituated BHSEC Model United Nations will be once the current seniors are done. ILMUNC was my penultimate extramural conference, and it contained the high level of difficulty that challenged me and plenty of optimism about this team moving forward.”
Model United Nations was fortunate enough this year to have new students join the team. These students will be the people who will help represent the team after students like Van Nostrand and Neuman leave this fall. Freshman Hanna Dobroszycki enjoyed the experience. Dobroszycki was able to “learn from a lot of really strong delegates in [her] bloc.” Unlike some other delegates, she enjoyed the length of the conference. She thought “a four day conference gave a lot of opportunity to fix mistakes, or build a presence gradually if speaking time was limited.” While Dobroszycki found the fourdays to be both ‘intense and exhausting,’ she expressed that she definitely had a great time.
Donovan also called the conference a ‘great experience.’ Donovan is no stranger to Model United Nation conferences, like Dobroszycki, she found the conference to “offer a much more intense experience.” Considering that Donovan was one of the younger delegates in her committee, she “had to work hard to find a balance where [she] was learning from [the older delegates] while still standing [on her] own. Although this did prove difficult at times, Ori [Shaham] and [she] found a way to still succeed.” Dobroszycki and Donovan plan on continuing Model United Nations in the future.
The next and last Model United Nations conference of the year is approaching WAMUNC in Washington, DC. The conference will be a final goodbye to Model United Nations for some members of the club such as Van Nostrand and Neuman. However, for members of the club like Dobroszycki, Shaham, Donovan and others, WAMUNC will be another step in their Model United Nations journey. Van Nostrand’s last wishes for the club are that it will grow and “continue to be a group of students who are serious, but participate out of a genuine love for the Model United Nations experience.”
The Model United Nations team meets on Wednesdays at 3:20 in Room 306. The secretariat can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.