It's a record year for Concordia’s Model UN!
Concordia’s Model United Nations (CONMUN) has smashed its previous record of 28 awards, earned over a four-year period from 1998 to 2002, bringing home a total of 25 awards this academic year. And there may be more to come.
The student group participates in a number of UN simulation competitions, where delegates are assigned countries and placed in committees to debate and propose solutions to hypothetical political situations.
Last month, delegates from CONMUN won three awards at the Harvard World Model United Nations (HWMUN), held last month in Montreal. With more than 2,000 delegates, it's one of the largest, and most internationally diverse college-level Model UN conferences.
CONMUN sent 21 delegates and Concordians Laura Galvez and Eleni Gkesoura took away top awards for diplomacy, representing Colombia and the USSR respectively. Annelies Coessens and Adrianna Marrocco received a joint verbal commendation for their performance in the Special Political and Decolonization Committee.
Attendance in CONMUN has soared this year, with participation in drop-in training sessions increasing from about 40 to 170 people.
Andrei Bochis is the CONMUN president and a student at the John Molson School of Business (JMSB). He attributes the growth to several factors, including a strong executive team, a new and exciting in-house selection process for conferences that revolves around try-outs and more affordable conferences. Two were offered to delegates free of charge this year.
Bochis adds that the eclectic variety of majors represented at CONMUN, ranging from journalism to political science to business, contributed to the group’s success.
Fall training sessions are geared toward people hoping to be picked for conferences, while winter training sessions are aimed at students who want to improve debating skills or hope to participate next year. CONMUN is an undergraduate fee-levy organization and any undergrad student can join.
From diplomacy to debating skills
“CONMUN equips students with skills and knowledge not learned in the classroom,” Bochis says.
This includes diplomacy, negotiation, problem-solving and teamwork. Moreover, students must become intimately acquainted with the politics, health care, laws, financial system and customs of the country they are assigned.
He adds that learning how to speak in front of 200 to 300 people can help people suffering with stress and anxiety.
“This can also help in your career later in life.”
CONMUN’s last event of the year is a conference at Vanier College taking place on April 29 and 30.
Find out how to get involved with Concordia’s Model United Nations.