Horace Mann MUN Conference Gives Back to the World Food Programme and the Alexander Capelluto Humanitarian Initiative

by KFC on November 11, 2011

This conference recap was provided by Zander Daniel, one of the Secretaries-General of HoMMUNC 2011. 

Horace Mann School hosted the annual Horace Mann Model United Nations Conference (HoMMUNC) on October 22nd. HoMMUNC 2011 was the largest conferences the school has ever hosted — the conference exceed capacity — and is the largest single day Model UN conference on the East Coast. Over 700 delegates from 33 schools attended the conference.

The Keynote Speaker was James Rubin, a former diplomat and journalist. He currently is an executive editor at Bloomberg News overseeing editorial issues of Bloomberg News in Central and South America, Mexico, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and Africa. Mr. Rubin also served in the State Department under Clinton and was considered Madeleine Albright’s right hand man.

This year, HM’s MUN has started the Alexander Capelluto Humanitarian Initiative named after a Horace Mann valedictorian and Model UN leader who tragically died while attending Yale in 2006. The group felt that they needed to give back to the world and that Model United Nations at Horace Mann needed to act on world issues rather than just debate them. The ethos of the Alexander Capelluto Humanitarian Initiative is as follows:

“The goal of HoMMUNC has always been to instill in its delegates a greater sense of global awareness and responsibility. We hope that after deliberating on some of the most pressing issues facing the world, students will leave the conference not only as stronger debaters but as more informed individuals. With the creation of the Alexander Capelluto Humanitarian Initiative, we aim to further this goal in years to come. “

This year, one of the newer aspects of the conference was a focus on tangible change and action that we could effect through our conference. HoMMUNC donated money to the World Food Programme in an effort to help the 12 million people left in Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Djibouti, and Uganda in need of food aid. Also, borrowing an idea from CMUNC last year, we placed jars in committees so that delegates could make their own contribution.

One of the most interesting things about the conference was that it covered a wide array of topics related to the United Nations. For example, the Security Council debated the Situation in the Korean Peninsula as well as the Situation in Syria. The United Nations Development Programme debated  Poverty Reduction and Primary Education. The United Nations Special Committee on Palestine, a historical committee based in 1947, also met.

The students are especially proud that the entire conference is student run. Secretaries-General are Daniel Brovman, Alexander Daniel, and Sarah Gertler. Chair of the Board is Zoe Rubin. Under-Secretaries General (11th Grade) are Elizabeth Rosenblatt, Matthew Meltzer, Nathan Raab, Maurice Farber, and Colin Mark.  Faculty Advisor is HM’s Registrar and mathematics teacher, Mr. Mitchell Francis.

Awards

While the conference does not give delegation awards, The Dalton School won eight of the ten Best Delegate awards and clearly dominated the awards at the conference. Other schools that won many awards include Stuyvesant High School, Brooklyn Friends School, and Horace Mann (freshmen and sophomores).

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