By Eve Jamilkowski
On November 11, Bellbrook’s Model UN club, supervised by social studies teacher Mr. Parks, traveled to University of Dayton’s Model United Nation Conference to participate in a Model UN debate that featured area high school groups.
Sophomore Dani Vermillion, a participant in the competition, was one of many first timers at the event. “There were a ton of different high schools there. We got to meet a whole bunch of different types of people and students, and it was a good experience to interact with people who have different personalities than you,” Vermillion said.
According to Vermillion, preparing for the competition was a lot less stressful than she thought it would be. Each student from the club was given a random country two to three weeks prior to the event. They were then told the topic they’d be debating on, and everyone had until the day of the competition to research their assigned country’s opinion on the topic. They had to prepare notes as well as a battle strategy.
Once arriving at UD, every student from each school was divided into teams, with the hopes of students breaking out of comfort zones and interacting with new people. Groups went into separate rooms with college student judges to debate problems acting as their given country’s leader to ultimately brainstorm a solution.
Each of the ten different teams, also called committees, awarded four prizes to competitors: two for Best Position Paper, Best Delegate, one for Commendation, and one for Outstanding Delegate. A student was then selected for each category by the college student judges and awarded a certificate. Bellbrook students took home two wins that night, with senior Kirsten Thomas taking Best Position Paper, and junior Ben Pursel receiving Commendation.
The next Model UN event is scheduled for March at Miami University, followed by the first-ever competition held by Wright State University in April. There’s also time to sign up for the event in February in Chicago, where students will travel and stay locally for four days as they debate at Model United Nations at the University of Chicago. See Mr. Parks for details.