How to Run a Model U.N. Club in High School

by Pinar Sezgin on April 24, 2017

Model United Nations has always been one of the most popular activities among high school students. And what makes it different from the other clubs in the school is the ‘’team spirit’’ that it creates, which brings students together. Every award you win as a delegation, every trip to a conference, everything you achieve together, creates an everlasting bond.

Every year, there are hundreds of MUN clubs being created around the world, but there are also many clubs that sadly disbands after its core members graduate. Having witness to the founding of my own school’s MUN Club and running the day to day operations as the president since 2016; this guide will hopefully assist you on how to run your club with some tips. By the end of the article, hopefully, you will take away that It doesn’t matter who you are, anyone and everyone should have Model U.N at their disposable, whether that means starting your own club, or learning on how to run yours better. I fundamentally believe that these tips will help you.

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Encourage new delegates, and become their teacher.

Each year, new members will join the club, and others will graduate and leave. Freshmen will be the ‘’posterity’’ of the club in the future. And they will be the ones taking your place someday. Which is why, it’s important to understand that encouraging and patiently explaining new delegates on how the club functions, or just teaching them how to get started with Model UN will entice delegates to be more active.

Since you are the club president, new members will look up to you. So, your duty is to guide them through their MUN journey! If you encourage them to participate and attend more conferences, if you inspire them to rise, to speak and to express their opinions; and if you clearly explain to them what they need to know but more importantly, what they need to improve upon, I’m sure you will see that club members will find the motivation to be better delegates. By empowering promising students, what you are doing is taking proactive steps to ensure that the club is in good hands, long after you leave.

Give lectures on specific topics; create a study guide for your students.

You should arrange lectures on different topics and aspects of Model U.N. (E.g.: How to write a resolution, Points, and motions, How to write a position paper…etc. Of which you can consult BestDelegate of course)  By doing so, you can make sure that new delegates possess a firm grasp on how Model UN works. While teaching your students, you can use study guides that you’ve found on the internet and hand them out to the students, although it would be much more effective to write or alter these study guides into digestible pieces, making the training relevant to both your club and the Model U.N circuit. Study guides can include, info sheets, powerpoint presentations or even sample draft resolutions and positions papers with useful pointers on the side.

Of course, running the club is not just about going to conferences and having fun. There will be a ton of administrative tasks to handle, as a person of authority, the responsibility of ensuring everybody else’s enjoyment, alleviating crises and dealing with penalties will also be bestowed upon you. That being said, it is worth exploring, to delegate tasks and responsibilities to other club members, designating a role to trusted club members is a phenomenal way to allow upperclassmen to exhibit leadership traits. Just be sure to communicate these responsibilities clearly, and to always be in constant contact with your officers and club members

Create study groups before every conference

Your club will probably participate in lots of conferences. To catch up with every team, create individual study groups. Find a day that works with everyone, and meet after school every week. In this way, people can work together and help each other with their research and sharpen skills of diplomacy. Everyone can discuss ideas and brainstorm. As previously mentioned, these study groups also serve as a beacon for experienced delegates to help less experienced delegates by teaching them essential skills of Model U.N. Creating a study group and meeting as often as needed will also push the delegates to work systematically and foster a sense of community.

 Organize practice simulations

Once in a while, you can choose a random topic that you would like to discuss; and organize a practice simulation for new delegates before their first conference. So that they can mitigate their fear and get comfortable while speaking. Also, practice makes perfect. And some delegates may not find the opportunity to travel a lot to participate in conferences because of where they live (e.g.: me); so if you organize practice simulations, delegates could really benefit off of it. Just meet after school, arrange the desks as if you were in a committee, print out placards (Or if you’re really lazy, use the blank page on the back of old homework assignments) and you’re all set! ‘’The floor is open, are there any delegates wishing to speak?!’’

Interested in learning more about MUN leadership?

Our Level 4 Secretary-General program might be right for you! At the MUN Institute, campers learn about global issues, experience life on a college campus, and make friends from around the world. In the Level 4 Secretary-General program for advanced MUNers, you will develop your advanced leadership skills, learn how to train your fellow delegates, and discover how to run your own Model United Nations club or conference. Click here to learn more!

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