What are MUNs?
Model United Nations started in the U.S. somewhere around 1950. In India, MUNs gained popularity in the early 2000s and institutions in all the states started organising MUNs around 10-15 years ago. Students deal with global issues and come together to find solutions for them while playing the role of representatives of different countries in a UN like simulation. United Nations Information centre allows schools and universities to collaborate with them while organising MUNs upon request. They partner with many conferences that include more than 20,000 students. MUNs are the stepping stones into the global sphere. Read more to find out why and how you should organise MUN conferences. This article includes everything to give you a head start.
Why Your School/College Should Start Organising MUN Conferences
Gives Recognition to the School.
While organising MUNs in your school, you invite delegates from multiple regions and states. This puts you in the highlights and provides recognition in the industry.
Hosting such conferences increases the school’s credibility. Such events bring sharp minds to the organisation and sharpen the minds of those who are already participating.
Awareness About Global Issues.
MUNs help the students get acquainted with global issues. The school gives the students the platform to become well informed about what’s going on in the world.
Weight to Resume.
Participation in multiple MUNs shows that the student has leadership skills, communication skills, and confidence. It adds more weight to college applications and resumes.
It gives the children of the school some amazing first-hand organising experience. It helps them hone their management skills for the future.
Steps involved in organising MUNs-
Attend a few conferences and learn.
It would be better for you to get the general idea of how these conferences work.
Scheduling the conference
Location: Finding a welcoming location with a quiet and warm environment is necessary for ensuring a nice experience for the delegates. You need to analyze if your school/college building is big enough to host the conference. If you’re inviting delegates from other states, there should be a lodging facility nearby.
Date: You need to decide on an appropriate date for your Model United Nations conference. This step needs special attention because you can’t change the date once everything has been scheduled.
Size: For your first conference you should host a smaller conference for the experience. Decide on the number of delegates you want to invite and the number of committees you want to keep.
Fees: You will also have to decide on how much you’re going to charge your delegates. You should keep the fees just enough to cover your expenses but feasible enough for the participants.
Once you’re all set with scheduling your conference, you need to decide which committees you want to set up. Also, you’ll need teams like Hospitality, Finance, Executives, etc. for the smooth functioning of your event. Then, you have to figure out whom you want to give the responsibility of Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson and Rapporteur, i.e. the Executive Board in the same hierarchical order. Secretary-General is at the top of the leadership hierarchy.
Secretary-General: Responsible for supervising all board members and staff. They are also in charge of all administrative activities.
Chairperson: Responsible for keeping the committee running and is the highest authority after Secretary-General.
Vice Chairperson: Assist Chairperson in all the activities going on in the committee.
Rapporteur: Perform all the procedural duties, like adding speakers to the speakers’ list, organising working papers, etc.
- Decide on all the committees and their dais members. There are different types of committees, and you should choose General Assembly committees for your first time, along with a few Special Committees.
- Choose people with experience for Dais responsibilities.
- Research and come up with agendas for every committee.
After you’ve decided all the prerequisites for a conference, you need to start with registrations. Make sure that your registration process is as simple as it can be.
For the conference to be successful, the promotion has to be extensive. Try advertising in all the local schools and colleges as well. Use social media as an effective tool and exploit all the marketing opportunities.
Contact every school and convince them that sending delegates to your conference is going to be beneficial for them. Do the same for individual delegates as well.
Promote your dates and especially call the schools that already have MUN teams.
Provide training to your Secretariat and leaders of the General Assembly.
This is important so that they are well versed in all the rules and procedures.
Assign countries to all the participants to avoid any kind of confusion and ensure order.
Schools sometimes send teams of delegates that work together. In these cases, a country is assigned to a team of students.
Send details to the delegates.
Delegates should receive basic research and necessary guides regarding the format of position papers, deadlines of submission, conference programs, etc.
Set deadlines for the submission of position papers and provide guidelines for these beforehand. These papers should be carefully reviewed by Chairpersons.
Prepare MUN kits.
MUN kits should include basic things like a pen, notepad, a folder, a conference program, and guidelines of the conference. These keep the delegates at ease with everything easily accessible.
You’ll need a lot of volunteers for assistance in every aspect of the conference.
Few common awards include Best Delegate, Best Position paper and Honourable Mention. You should add more awards and certificates according to your resources and the size of the delegation.
On the day of the conference-
1. Start with the statement of Secretary-General.
2. Then a few minutes of meditation or silent prayer.
3. Introduction of the Agendas.
4. At the beginning of each committee meeting, Chairperson should tell the delegates the conference program.
5. An informal meeting at the end of the day to review the draft resolution.
6. End the conference with a formal award ceremony.
Organising MUNs can be a lot of work, but it’s also very rewarding. Here’s a checklist for you to ensure that you don’t miss anything and your conference is a success.
|S. no.||Pre-conference||On the day of Conference|
|1||Location, Date, and Fees of the conference||Make sure all the things are in place before the arrival of delegates|
|2||Number of committees||Brief your staff|
|3||Define Agendas of all the committees||Begin conference with the statement of Secretary-General|
|4||Registrations||Brief the delegates about the conference|
|5||Deciding on the members of the Executive Board||Begin the first meetings of all the committees|
|6||Promotion and Marketing|
|7||Assign countries to the delegates||Award Ceremony|
|8||Send basic research and information regarding the rules and procedure to the delegates|
|9||Decide and inform deadlines|
|10||Prepare MUN kits for the delegates|
|11||Get certificates and awards ready|
|12||Give training to everyone involved in organising|