Model United Nations teaches students diplomacy

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By Ulises Vargas

(Model United Nations)

By Ulises Vargas

he Model United Nations is an organization known across America consisting of a group of students who travel the country to debate and gain diplomatic knowledge of other countries.

Riverside City College’s MUN program began as a small organization in 1956 and has grown to be recognized across the country.

“We try to mimic the United Nations from delegations to committees,” said RCC Model United Nations student, Elsa Rodriguez.

“Our goal is to give students diplomatic skills, right wording and many more useful skills and prepare them to debate against other colleges as a part of a mock United Nations meeting,” Rodriguez said.

The program prepares students in diplomacy, negotiations and international affairs.

Students take courses about international organizations and then participate in simulations similar to actual U.N. meetings.

An MUN conference is a simulation of the real U.N. where each school represents a foreign country.

Students learn about their country, world events, as well as the operations of the U.N. itself.

In 1993, RCC’s MUN began to hold national conferences in New York.

Since then, this organization has won several awards and recognitions.

This past April, the MUN received Outstanding Delegation representing the country of Ireland at the 2008 National Model United Nations Conference.

The MUN is split into different committees and sub-committees who attempt to tackle the difficult problems in the world today.

“We do proposed resolutions to current events such as poverty, terrorism and human rights,” said Ward Schinke, MUN advisor.

“All the students that join gain much needed experience in multilateral diplomacy,” Schinke

Each year, MUN holds the Inland Empire Conference Model United Nations in the Bradshaw Cafeteria.

“We get many delegates from area colleges and high schools,” Rodriguez said. “We try to model it as a national conference and it ends up being very successful and organized.”

“These conferences provide an amazing learning experience,” Schinke said. “Aside from traveling the country, students gain professional, life-changing experiences. It opens up many opportunities.”

“It’s challenging, yet rewarding,” Rodriguez said. “We get a lot of interested students.”

Rodriguez herself has had a fulfilling time at Model United Nations.

“I was an ESL student, and was very shy,” Rodriguez said. “When I heard about MUN, I was a student of Dr. Schinke’s. I got interested with all the different cultures and decided to join. With MUN, you do a lot of speeches and that helped me do a lot that I didn’t know I could do.”

The MUN organization is well respected and highly recognized nationally by major colleges and universities.

The MUN does several presentations on campus throughout the semseter to encourage students to get involved.

“RCC’s MUN is committed to excellence,” said Aiskell Roman, MUN delegate. “MUN will teach you many life skills and diplomatic skills.

But most importantly, it will increase your knowledge about the world and how you can make a difference. And after hard work, you travel for free!”

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