Over 600 delegates attended this weekend’s Stanford Model United Nations Conference (SMUNC). Mostly Northern California schools were in attendance, with a few international schools from China and Ghana.
At opening ceremonies, Secretary-General Konstantine Buhler challenged delegates to find their passion. He gave out his phone number and asked delegates to send him text messages throughout the conference to describe moments when they felt passionate. By the end of the conference, Konstantine received almost 100 messages — most of them appropriate — in which students described their passions, from discussing Israel-Palestine to traveling through India to international agriculture policy.
Opening ceremonies also featured a panel discussion of Stanford faculty on human rights, nuclear non-proliferation, and the situation in Afghanistan. Konstantine directed the panel, opening with the question, “How do human rights affect the lives of everyday Americans?” Delegates were also given the chance to ask questions, several of which were very philosophical. One delegate asked, “What stage of enlightenment do you think our civilization is in?”
SMUNC featured 29 committees, ranging from traditional Model UN committees such as the Security Council, WHO, and IAEA, as well as several crisis committees, including:
- Timely simulations of the Libyan National Transitional Council and the 2012 Republican National Convention,
- A historical 1776 joint cabinet crisis between the Second Continental Congress and British Parliament, and,
- The board of directors of Louis Vuitton, which included an LV duffel bag in the middle of the boardroom table — I couldn’t tell if it was real or fake!
Closing ceremonies was held at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business. The delegation awards went to:
- Best Large Delegation: Henry M. Gunn High School from Palo Alto, CA
- Outstanding Large Delegation: California High School from San Ramon, CA
- Best Small: Bellarmine College Preparatory from San Jose, CA
- Outstanding Small: The Pacific Ridge School from Carlsbad, CA
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