Model UN is about leadership skills, confidence and team work
Hundreds of students from universities across the UK came together and debated on various issues that concern the world. Those students speak about their experiences at the Cardiff Model United Nations.
The Cardiff MUN saw students participating in various debates, diplomatic talks, taking a stand for citizens from their country and also having a bit of fun and excitement as part of their learning in the two day event.
The conference saw around 120 participants from over ten universities across the UK between March 3 and 5. The event saw students debating under the banners of the United Nations Security Council, the UN refugee Agency, United Nations Human Rights Council, Crisis United Nations and the Economic and Social Council.
Polina Bishenden, a delegate from University of Kent, London represented South Africa for the Economic and Social Committee of the Cardiff MUN 2017.
“There have been number of points that have been presented by the delegates. Everyone was speaking and opening up with new ways of how issues can be resolved,” she says.
The delegate also said she was happy to have successfully passed the resolution on sustainable development and transport at the end of the conference.
When asked how she would like to contribute if she represented her country in the UN for real, Polina said she would like to work on upgrading slums. “The topic was raised during the debate and it is very unjust that people are living in such poor conditions. It is a loss and I would like to upgrade the living conditions of people living in slums,” she says.
First time participant, Sion Pithouse, a delegate representing Saudi Arabia said the conference is a great opportunity for him to develop his oral speaking skills. “It also teaches to work together as a team for a cause and make new friends,” Sion adds.
For many participants the event was also an opportunity to develop confidence. “I always wanted to participate in at least one of the MUN’s before graduating from university,” says Aprajita Srivastava who is studying finance at the London School of Economics.
She also remarked that the conference has helped her to understand how the UN works and its procedures.
The chair members, having been a part of the MUN for the past three years, had useful things to tell to the participants. Charis Yeap, who chaired the Economic and Social Committee said that, “Cardiff MUN is known to be a beginner’s conference. The group has shown professionalism in their discussions and it is commendable to see that first time participants are falling well in the steps of diplomacy.”
When asked about how they maintain a friendly atmosphere during heavy debates, Charis said, “It is important that an atmosphere of friendliness exist between chair and delegates rather than awkwardness. We have to be strict on rules and crack a joke once a while, but be stern on politically incorrectness and intervene during a situation when it comes to respect each other.”