East’s Model United Nations head to Johns Hopkins University

Sonia Kim (’16)/ For Eastside

From February 6 to February 9, Cherry Hill East’s Model United Nations Team will be at Johns Hopkins University to participate in the Model United Nations Conference, also known as JHUMUNC, which stands for Johns Hopkins University Model United Nations Conference. During these four days, Cherry Hill East’s student delegates will have the opportunity to become a great diplomat, take part in various workshops, conduct intense research and present information pertaining to their assigned countries that they will be representing at the conference.

Amy Chen said, “It will be my first time at an overnight conference… regardless of the work and effort I have put in, it is evident that this will be a great experience which makes me excited.”

Model United Nations, also known as Model UN or just MUN, is an after-school activity at East. East is one of thousands of schools from all over the country that has a Model United Nations program.

“Model UN is a fantastic club that centers around the ability to compromise and negotiate with other people with differing opinions. MUN works great for those who need to strengthen their communication skills,” said Jacob de Blecourt.

As students participate in Model UN, they will be able to develop a strong understanding for issues on an international level. Students then apply their knowledge that they gained from extensive research at conferences where they role-play delegates to the United Nations and also simulate United Nations committees.

Benny Breslau (’14) said, “Delegates need to learn the background of their own country as well as that of others in order to make successful diplomatic ties.”

At the end of the conferences, students are recognized and awarded for their exceptional skills in public speaking, debating, writing and researching. MUN is an extra-curricular activity that involves substantial critical thinking as well as leadership abilities.

“While research can get you far, a successful delegate needs to be good at both research and diplomacy… one must be direct, articulate and powerful while addressing the gathered delegates,” said Max DuBoff.

Participants range from middle school students to graduate school students. These students have devoted a great amount of time in order to prepare for JHUMUNC. 

Zach Kasdin (’14) who is in charge of organizing Model UN said, “I had to work closely with 18 delegates strategizing, editing papers and generally getting everyone ready for the conference.”

In order to participate in this conference, students were required to participate in previous conferences that were held throughout the school year at various high schools, including East, and complete thorough research in order to write a strong position paper. Position papers are an important part of the conference as they contain students’ political ideas based on policies of each representative country.

“Preparation involves a lot of research… [people] need to understand their committee’s topic in detail in order to create a solution to the issues at hand,” said Breslau.

This year, over 2,000 delegates have registered for JHUMUNC. At this conference, students will have a chance to further their studies on international affairs issues as well as meet hundreds of other delegates across the country.

“I’ve met a lot of really great people from other schools I would have never been able to. I’m really lucky to be a part of MUN,” said de Blecourt.

East students attending JHUMUNC are definitely in for a memorable experience. We wish the best of luck to our East delegates.