This year‘s Model United Nation was influenced by great changes among global collaborations and political opinions. With the election of Donald Trump as 45th President of the United States of Amerika, 2017 started as a year of promises, disruptions and major uncertainties. As we sat in the conference room in the Sheraton Hotel where we were welcomed to this year’s NMUN, we could all feel the anxiety and tension in the room, especially, when the NMUN President explained that not all nations will be represented this year, since some weren’t allowed to enter the US anymore.
Model United Nations is about peace and freedom and human rights for everyone which represents a sharp contrast to the entry ban for 7 Muslim countries that was just introduced by the new President. In this context, two UN deputies explained the importance of the work of the UN to handle such inequity and educate people around the globe to stand up for their rights and to make a change.
At the end of the session, one could say that after such encouraging speeches everyone felt responsible to work as hard as possible to achieve outstanding resolutions, show diplomacy, make compromises, interact and respect the others in order to show the need to change the current situations around the globe.
Crucial Changes due to the administration of Trump could also be seen with regard to this year’s committee topics, especially in terms of nuclear disarmament and environmental issues.
Talking about global changes, at this year’s NMUN we could also see the benefits of newly developments. For the first time, the organization team made use of technological advantages in introducing an IT platform which we used to coordinate, to ensure to be on time and to have an overview over what other committees are working on. Becoming a broad overview also helped within the own committee since everyone could pre-read interesting topics and find groups to work with on similar ideas.
As we represented the People’s Republic of China we felt slightly ambivalent, since China represents in many aspects different opinions to other nations, to the US but also to Germany, which made it hard for us to stay in character. However, since China plays a huge role in the international community we had the chance to be heard and to show real diplomacy in negotiating with other countries.
Being well prepared and taking actively part in the committee sessions is what differentiates a nice NMUN from a great NMUN. Getting into the topics, understanding the role and opinions of the country you’re representing on the issues at hand is truly exciting and even leads you to put up with 10 hours of hard work and late night sessions.
However, New York is not only about the four-day conference. We arrived seven days in advance to New York in quite a chaos with huge masses of snow on the streets and the sidewalks due to a blizzard in the area of New York which also leads to many flight cancellations so that some of us had to come a few days later. Although the weather could have been better, we spend the first days sightseeing and strolling around the city visiting the Rockefeller Center, the Central Park, the High Lane, Museum of Modern Art and Brooklyn.
Since we all came along well, which isn’t necessarily the fact regarding a group of 40 people, we also went to dinner together, to bars and clubs and really enjoyed our free days before the preparation workshops and the conference started.
All in all, we had awesome 11 days in New York getting to know the city and the United Nations and meeting so many different people. This trip was an experience which won’t be forgotten and as we managed to take home two individual and one group award, we were very proud of what we achieved. With everyone pushing to the limit, we were exhausted and tired after those 11 days, but I guess everyone would agree that it was definitely worth it.