Accomplished and passionate debating marked the second Model United Nations (MUN) Conference at Gordon’s, West End, Woking at the weekend. Attracting some 100 students from seven schools across the country – including Beaconsfield High; Canford; Reading Blue Coat and Weydon together with Humboldtschule in Germany, the delegates were professional to the last.
Debates included ‘the question of USA embargo against Cuba’; ‘income and distribution in developing economies’; ‘human organ trafficking’; ‘sustainable fisheries’ and ‘armed aggression in the DR Congo’. Opening the Conference, Gordon’s Head Teacher Andrew Moss drew attention to it coinciding with the first day of Brexit and said there could be no better time for the school to be hosting a MUN Conference. He also reminded delegates that 2020 is the 75th anniversary of the founding of the United Nations.
A formal dinner was held for all the delegates with Sir Andrew Parmley, former Lord Mayor of London and former ex officio Vice President of the Gordon Foundation who gave the key note speech. Sir Andrew, the current Headmaster of the Harrodian School stressed the importance of diplomacy and making the most of opportunities.
Model UN encourages young people to think about social concerns and issues in the world around them, which would be discussed by the real United Nations. Through MUN, young people build on their communication and debating skills, whilst also learning to think on the spot, learn rational thought despite emotive discussions, and build on their confidence.
Secretary General Grace Keyes from Gordon’s was instrumental in deciding on the countries and committee questions. She said: “There’s something very special about MUN, this sort of persona that you adopt as a young person taking on the issues that really seriously affect the world today, and of course meeting new people that are all just as passionate.”