Model UN In-Depth

Model UN In-Depth

Jenna Golub

While Model UN is a popular club at Hills, the activities that go on at the meetings and during the trips are somewhat of a mystery to many students who aren’t involved in the club. To offer some clarification, Model UN is an educational simulation where students learn about international relations, diplomacy, and the UN through research and roleplay. But what exactly does this mean?


Students can join the club at the beginning of the year, and this time is spent training new members about what to expect at the conferences and how to do proper research about their topic. Members are assigned a country and a committee that exists in the UN; they have to research their assigned country’s beliefs and actions that apply to their designated committee, and then use this information to write a position paper.


The meetings during the first half of the year are only for new members, and then during the second half of the year, old and new members alike edit their position papers and attend open drop-in sessions for help on protocol and what to wear at the conferences.


Freshman Alec Boyajian, a member of the club stated, “Model UN conferences are a rewarding experience where you can learn a lot about the world.”


Conferences hosted by college students are held every year, and there are several trip opportunities throughout the year.


During the trips, students come prepared with knowledge about their country and committee, and are fully trained for the specific protocol they need to follow at conferences. For example, being appropriately dressed is very important during conferences, along with decorum. The expectations of Model UN members at conferences are reviewed before the trips.


Freshman Yemie Woo, who is also part of the club, shared her opinion.


“I think Model UN is a great experience because if you suffer from fear of public speaking, it really helps to improve those skills,” Woo mentioned. “I also like the debating portion of Model UN: making your point and case clear, and seeing other people’s perspectives on a lot of different topics.”


According to history teacher Jane Yeam, who runs Model UN, Hills students excel at the conferences, and bring home several awards every year. The team is student-led, and the awards won are a result of student leaders who are able to train the members well so that they are very strong and well-prepared at the conferences.


Since most aspects of Model UN are student-run,  Yeam’s role in the club is to oversee the meetings, help students with their research, and give approval to students for their position papers.


“Model UN is a student-run organization for many different student personalities to be able to excel,” Yeam commented. “It is not only for those who are interested in diplomacy, but also for students who are able to shine and show their strengths through the application of international relations, strong research and writing abilities, artistry at public oration, and the capability of students who excel at being able to lead their peers towards the resolution of world issues.”


Students who are interested in current events, working with others from all over the country, and showing their skills should be sure to check out Model UN.