Becoming a Model UN nerd was most likely the second best decision that I have made in college. As ludicrous as it may seem, it has really impacted my life more than most people would imagine. There is so much room for growth and understanding that you cannot gain through other groups and organization. Here are just a few reasons that everyone should try Model UN regardless of you major.
1. Public speaking becomes your best friend.
Some of the quietest people I have ever met are in the club and are some the most eloquent speakers that you would ever meet. One learn how to give an educated and through speech in front of hundreds of strangers that you will spend only a few days with. You speak about the most mundane items such increasing speaking times and how many questions people should ask you. It allows one to gain confidence in speaking in front an educated group of peers. This is a skill that will extend into many aspects of the future. It is a lesson that anyone entering the work force should be able to do. Gaining the confidence to speak without stuttering and nervous ticks is one of the amazing advantages of joining model un.
2. Becoming worldly.
Model UN students and club members are able to step outside of their shoes of being an American citizen and embrace a new history and culture that is not always familiar to your life. Within varies conferences, I have been able to represent the United Kingdom, Pakistan, Tunisia, and Russia. All of these countries have different perspectives and policies on many issues that are available within the work of the United Nations. By representing these countries, one is able to learn about the culture and the areas that they need to improve. It allows one to understand the culture and the struggles, and recognize the importance of small growths and improvements in developing countries. It allows one to see the problems faced globally, and the issues that is affecting the world today.
3. Meeting amazing people at conferences
Since I have started participating in Model UN, I have attended four big conferences. Each conference I was able to meet people from all across the United States. These people have become friends and connections that span globally. These people become some of the people that you may work with in the future. It is expanding your network, and opening doors you have not arrived at yet. It is probably one of the perks of conference. Not only do you meet these people, most have common interest and majors.
4. Experience dressing in Business attire
At the beginning of my experience as a Model UNer, the worst part was the dress code for conference. Most conference requires western business attire. This usually includes a professional look and the need for a lot of black, gray, and navy. The silver lining of the situation is that it is practice for the real world, and the expectation of most modern employers. They expect you to have class and dress well for any occasion. Although it is not the greatest waking up an hour and half earlier to make sure that your clothes have no wrinkles and you look the part, one is able to know the feeling of being in business attire for more than eight hours. Now as I am about to experience my last couple of conferences, I have come to enjoy dressing the part and have incorporated many of the items into my daily wardrobe such as my blazer and pencil skirt.
5. Learn to properly Research
Research is one of the most valuable lessons that can be taught during the experience. Finding out other nations foreign policy is not always a simply task. It is analyzing speeches, actions taken about the countries, treaty agreements, and press releases. Sometimes in a different language. Researching can be rather difficult especially when a country does not have much on the topic. There is finding concrete information and there is trying to figure out an appropriate position based on the research that you have found.
6. Writing ability maximized
The entire conference has two main components or skills that used throughout the entire time, speaking and writing. There is so much writing involved within the conference. From position papers, to resolutions, and even reports, there is no escaping at least some writing during the process. It shows a new form of writing that is not common within the academic setting. It is creative and unique but also straight to the point. It includes things minimizing an entire foreign policy to fit on one sheet of paper, resolutions with perambulatory clauses and operative clauses, and reports that are similar to those made in a business setting. Needless to say, you either learn to write or adapt to a new writing style.
7. Model UN family
One of my favorite aspects of the whole experience would be your fellow students becoming your family. We all travel together, share beds, and create memories that will last a lifetime. These people will always have those inside jokes that no one will understand, and a connection that can never be described. In the process of fixing the problems that face the world you are bonding, making inside jokes, living life to the fullest with people that may not have been your best friend before the conference. We all become one dysfunctional family that has contains the serious one, the inappropriate one, the know-it all, the person who stays in character, the social butterfly, the resident alcoholic, the comedian, the “leader”, the outspoken one, the newbie, and so many more personalities. As you get back to campus, you realize that you have friends outside of the your “usual” group, and people that you created some of the greatest college memories with, the memories and stories that you will talk about for years to come.
The aspect of traveling to big cities across the world is another highlight of the conference. Traveling from Toronto, New York, Chicago, among many other cities is another great perk of being a part of the club. You are able to explore cities in a way that you will never be able to again. Eat amazing food. During one conference there was a major protest within the city only a block away from the hotel that we were staying at. We were able to be a part of history and experience what the real world is really like.
Being a Model UN nerd has changed my college experience in so many ways. It has opened up so many opportunities that range from meeting new people, seeing new places, and experiencing life around the country. It has helped decide and change my path in the future and learn so many new skills that will carry with me into the real world. Model UN may not be for everyone, but it is worth given a try. It will be an unforgettable experience that will be discussed in the years to come.