How MUNs nurture students to become future leaders
Model United Nations (MUNs) provide a platform for students to polish their presentation, documentation and oratorial skills, besides cultivating deep insights on matters of global governance
The UPES MUN Club founded in 2012 hosts International Model United Nations Conference every year. The UPES International MUN is one of the most prestigious diplomatic events in the entire North Indian MUN circuit. The UPES MUN Club also organises MUN workshops to spread awareness amongst students. The club has organised several intra and inter Dehradun MUN conferences for students of various college and schools. Every year 300-400 delegates from institutes like NLU Odisha, St. Josephs School, GGDSD College, GD Goenka, Utkal University and from countries like Sudan, Nepal, Mexico and France, etc., participate in the UPES Annual MUN Conference.
This year, too, they had plans to host International MUN Conference in April, but due to the pandemic, it has been put on hold.
According to Kumar Utkarsh, President, UPES MUN Club,
“Model United Nations is an academic simulation of the United Nations where students play the role of delegates from different countries and attempt to solve real-world issues with the policies and perspectives of their assigned country. Participants get a Study Guide before the conference starts, which briefly outlines both topics and gives a tentative idea of the subject matter. Based on the study guide and the research done, the participants have to write a position paper before the actual conference begins, outlining the point of view of each country previously assigned to the participant.”
MUN provides a platform for students to learn and understand the policies and frameworks at a deeper level as opposed to superficial knowledge of the subject. It allows the participants to engage in discussions pertaining to international events and sensitizes them towards the various economic, social and military problems faced by countries, eventually paving the way for peaceful coexistence and prosperity. Students, apart from gaining valuable insights on inter-relatedness of things happening in the world, also learn what it takes be a diplomat and a leader.
Utkarsh recounts his first experience of attending a workshop conducted by the UPES MUN Club in 2016. “The sheer quality of intellect, rigour and purpose, I discovered there, ignited me to work more towards spreading awareness about MUN. I participated in the Intra-Dehradun and the International MUN organised by the club that year. I joined the organising team and continuously stepping up the ladder, today, I lead the team as its President. Being here has helped me to gain a bigger perspective. I also believe that the confidence and people skills I gained here helped me to secure a placement at Nestle in my first attempt,” he says.
The club is committed to upholding the highest standards in terms of compliance, content and student experience. UPES MUN Club has always served the intellectual interests of students and has operated on a no-profit model while allowing all enthusiasts across the globe to participate.
MUNs provide a pedestal to students for upskilling and networking, essential for law and management professionals. MUNs are one the most diverse events when it comes to utility and soft skills necessary to carve out an advantage in niche fields. Model UN teaches you to remove your personal emotions and look at problems rationally and objectively.
The exposure enhances the employability factor of students, as they feel much more confident in putting forward their ideas and working with new people.
“Model United Nations conference is a wonderful forum for students to understand global issues. Students study the intricacies of the issues, the history, and the resolutions thereof. It helps students gain leadership skills, debating prowess, knowledge of law, international relations, diplomacy, research, report writing, consensus-building, conflict resolution and cooperation. Insights into global issues and problems motivates youngsters to think about solutions,” explains Dr Vinita Singh, Associate Professor, UPES School of Law, and Convener, UPES MUN Club.