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22 February 2023

Model UN - Our trip to Boston

Model UN - Our trip to Boston

The weekend before half term was one of the most eventful ones for some of our Sixth Formers: Five EIC adventurers flew across the world for a three day Model UN conference in Boston, accompanied by Allan, our Principal. 

EIC is not new to this yearly event in Boston; in fact, before the last couple of lockdowns in recent years, other groups from our College were lucky enough to join the Model UN conference in the American city, where students are invited to become Global leaders for a weekend, and role-play as delegates from the United Nations of different countries. 

Here, through debates, committees, and collaborative group work, several current global topics are discussed, and the students are invited to share their views, which sometimes results in a fresh point of view to old times debates. 

Model UN is a great opportunity to widen the students’ horizons and reflect on how global issues affect other countries, whilst also improving public speaking, teamwork, and critical thinking skills.

The students who joined from Ealing Independent College were chosen based on their previous interest in the Bellevue Debating Competition, as similar negotiation and exposition skills were required to succeed and make the most of the event in Boston. 

Thus, Aavani, Mary, Louie, Theo and Umberto packed their bags, flew across the Atlantic, and had the honour of being the only international group to join the Model UN in Boston in person. 

On their first day in the US, our EIC students decided to use some of their free time to visit the Harvard University Campus. Aavani and Mary were extremely impressed by the size and atmosphere of Harvard, going so far as to consider moving to the States after completing their A Levels here at the College. 

Then, the Conference opened its door to all its participants. 

Our students were divided into different groups, depending on the topics that had previously been assigned to them. In fact, before the trip, the students had already done some background research on their team topics and each student wrote a paper - more or less a one page essay - which served as a starting point during the debates and group presentations. 

Aavani and Mary’s topics were the Mistreating of criminals and Uncompensated labour

After each debate, the students from different colleges were able to relax and have lunch/dinner together, which was a great opportunity to make friends, as well as discuss their progress in the debates.

Finally, on Sunday an Award Ceremony took place, in which Aavani was awarded best Position Paper for the topic she had discussed. 

The girls, Mary and Aavani, shared their views on how this conference has enriched them, both in terms of personal skills and educational experience. 

Aavani appreciated the teamwork and group efforts that had to happen in order for the team to come to a resolution; she admits that: 

Whilst debating on the first topic, I was focusing on “enforcing” rather than “suggesting” new ways to solve the issue of the mistreatment of prisoners. But I learnt that I had to leave more room to compromise with the other’s ideas, rather than only exposing my detailed plan. 

Mary, instead, mentioned how interacting with the American students made her more confident, as she could learn from their straightforwardness and friendliness. 

But not only those ones who flew over to Boston were allowed to join the conference. 

Indeed, Model UN also welcomed several virtual guests, amongst which one of our Y12s, Ryan. 

Ryan is passionate about events that promote critical thinking and debating skills; indeed, his dream is to study Political Science or Law. Thus, it is not uncommon for our Y12 students to join online competitions, conferences or events - this month alone he joined one event a week!

After enrolling to attend the Model UN conference, Ryan was sent a link that allowed him to join the interactive virtual debate, which works in the exact same way as the face-to-face event. 

Ryan’s topics were the Regulation on Cryptocurrency and Reducing the Wage Gap, and he was representing Bangladesh. 

Surprisingly, in Bangladesh, women get paid more than men. Therefore, it was challenging to represent a country where everything works differently, and I had to do a lot of research to be prepared on the topics. 

[...] I encourage everyone to join some events of this kind, even online, as they might discover a new passion, like I did myself, and also make friends that have the same interests. 

Well done to all the students that joined the Model UN conference, in every way and format. It makes EIC so proud to see the amount of interest and efforts that the students put forward these initiatives…. And, of course, it was great fun, too!

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