CSUN Model United Nations delegates win big

Kantreal Daniels

CSUN’s Model United Nations delegates took home nine out of 17 awards at this year’s California Model United Nations conference Oct. 21.

The Pan American Model United Nations hosted the California Model United Nations at The Clarion Hotel in Anaheim for the one-day conference.

Nineteen various colleges and high schools in California attended CALMUN.

“When they were announcing the winners I kept hearing Cal State Northridge repeatedly,” said Leonard Wong, a member of CSUN’s M.U.N.

Among the winning CSUN delegates were Sara Barrett, who won a research award representing Sierra Leone in the Organization of Islamic Countries; Wong, who won a Distinguished Delegate Award representing Palestine in the Organization of Islamic Countries; Danae Busby, who won a research award representing the Russian Federation in the International Law Commission; Aaron Montan, who won a research award representing Finland in the European Union; Tim Lovestedt, who won a Distinguished Delegate Award representing Afghanistan in the General Assembly; Dan Monteleone, who won a research award representing Palestine in the General Assembly; Ben Fathi, who won both a research award and an Outstanding Delegate Award representing the Russian Federation in the Security Council; and Malte Humpert, who won an Outstanding Delegate Award representing Sierra Leone in the General Assembly.

The Model United Nations can be described as the same way it sounds: It models after the real United Nations and they simulate an actual United Nations conference.

Each member represents a different country. When they are given a country to represent, they have to research it and present it for the chair members of the conference.

The awards given are based on research the representatives do, work submitted, participation, presentation (appropriate to the country), committee’s opinion, and the chair of the committee’s decision, said Nathaniel Stiles, former member of CSUN’s M.U.N.

“Eighty-five percent of the time the chair decides who will receive the awards,” Stiles said.

PAXMUN is one of many Model United Nations programs that host multiple conferences throughout the southern and western United States.

The conference was a way for CSUN students to become more familiar with regulations and measures that the members of the real United Nations encounter.

Prior to the conference, the participants in the event are able to get help from chair members, since they had previous experience with M.U.N., said PAXMUN’s Web site.

Unlike in previous years, PAXMUN and CALMUN Secretariat required the delegates to present “Policy Statements” one week prior to the conference. The policy statements were required to be one page that briefly described the background of the topic, United Nations and/or Regional Actions regarding the topic, country policy, and important treaties and other documents passed or signed in the last five years.

Model United Nations is an upper division course offered at CSUN for political science majors. This course is split into two parts, Model United Nations I and Model United Nations II. The first course is offered in the fall semester and allows students to develop a greater understanding of foreign policy and the role of the U.N. in world politics. In addition, this course includes a one-hour seminar and four hours of group presentations and simulations. The second course is offered during the spring semester. A political science major must complete the first course before moving on to the second.

The second course offers a more in-depth look into the United Nations. During this course, students prepare for a Model U.N. conference.

“Most people enjoy their experience in M.U.N.,” Wong said. “It allows for networking, leadership experience and negotiation skills.”