(This is a guest article written by the RHSMUN Under-Secretary-General of Administration, Simone Leonard)
How working for RHSMUN has shown me that personal investment in MUN is not simply a necessity, but what makes a MUN conference great.
What makes a phenomenal Model UN experience? Is it how much one is able to memorize the facts of a particular country’s policies, rewards and recognition, or learning how to craft a great resolution among peers? These things are all important on some level— that much is true. But what I have learned at my time working for the Regional Model United Nations Conference is that what makes a delegate or a staff member of a conference truly brilliant is how much they simply care. To personally and emotionally invest in Model UN is not something to be overlooked. Often times, it is easy to get wrapped up in the logistics of the tasks at hand, to forget that there is a greater meaning to the caucusing, working papers, and speech making. I have watched countless delegates begin their time in committee channel their nervous and excited energy into coherent and well thought out ideas. However, formulating and communicating a good idea isn’t where our search for reward from a Model UN conference should end.
The thing I love about RHSMUN (and its parent organization, the International Model United Nations Association, as a whole), is it’s undying dedication to giving delegates an experience that will last, long after the conference has ended. This passion begins with the staff, but it ends with the delegates— we work hard to create a conference that offers a unique learning experience simply because we hope that the personal investment we have made into this organization is not just returned in self-satisfaction, but delegate growth. This is why we ensure that our staff is trained to give all parts of the conference (delegates, faculty advisors, facilities management) equal parts attention and dedication. Holding a Model UN conference means nothing if the very people we are working with and for do not gain as much insight and excitement from the experience as the people who create it.
We do this all in the hopes that the delegates who attend see that global affairs are not only to be intellectualized, conceptualized, and memorized to be regurgitated into a speech. We are proposing and talking about topics that require compassion, careful thought, and sincere interest. For example, at RHSMUN 2014, topics range from The Role of Women in Developing Economies, to Conflict in the South and East China Seas, to Funding Disaster Preparedness, and Emergency Response Capabilities (and much, much more). Our objective is that for delegates, attending RHSMUN is more than a trip to San Francisco. It is our goal to create an environment of professionalism, engaging staff, and enthralled delegates who experience a healthy dose of competition paired with the desire to learn and experience Model UN for the sake of addressing the world affairs, and not for the sake of gavels. This passion is what makes RHSMUN unique, and perhaps as clichéd as this may sound to some, it is also entirely true.