On Saturday, February 3rd, 2018, the Riverside City College Model United Nations (MUN) team hosted its first practice academic conference of the year for all college and high school MUN teams alike to attend – named the Inland Empire Conference MUN (or IECMUN).
This conference consisted of three committees. The United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) – for college students – focused on setting global environmental policy. Security Council (SC) – also for college students – focused on maintaining international peace. And the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) – for high school students – focused on supervising subsidiary and expert bodies on economic, social, and environmental fields. In these committees, students were able to discuss urban development as it relates to ecological restoration, women in security, and sustainable energy for all.
When asked to comment on the topics chosen to discuss at the conference, RCC MUN student Skylar Fisher commented that she, “was incredibly happy to have an outlet in which I could talk with other issues that have global problems.”
The amazing thing about this conference – and all conferences run by the RCC MUN team – is that it was completely student run. Not only did members chair the conference in individual committees, but also worked behind the scenes in order to ensure the best experience for all attending delegates. Delegates such as Gamaliel Perez, Amy Maciel, and Jasmine Brown helped students through chairing within committee by reviewing working papers and giving valuable feedback. The conference had Rachel Lennox fill the role as Secretary General, a step ahead of the actual UN which has never had a conference headed by a female..
But this is something not surprising for the RCC MUN team as it is an incredibly diverse team; teammates consisting in culture backgrounds from nations including, Sri Lanka, Mexico, and Indonesia. The extreme diversity works as a centrifuge for the team in a way which pushes the team to be more culturally aware and become global citizens. Having different perspectives not only led to the resounding success of the running of the conference but pushed RCC delegates to succeed in having a better international perspective as well.
Within the individual committees, students were able to give passionate speeches in the perspective of one of the 193 UN Member States they were representing at the time along with discussing practical solutions to global problems relating to the committee they were in. After working together for several hours, all committees had several draft resolutions that were voted on to become resolutions through being voted on by the committee.
The conference was opened with team member Tony Ramos who spoke about the importance of engaging youth into all forms of politics. In conjunction with this, he also vocalized on how much MUN had helped him open the door for more opportunities, having come from an immigrant family. At the end of the conference, in the closing ceremonies, Amy Maciel wrapped things up with a speech on unity in adversity and the importance of solidarity for global students.
After giving his speech , Ramos lamented that, “it was a great feeling to be chosen to speak at a conference which I had been able to win an award at the year before and it was an especially touching moment when I was able to speak to a body of students who were beginning the journey that I was fortunate enough to take as well.”
The RCCMUN team looks forward to next year’s conference and will be hosting another this coming November – our annual PACMUN conference. You can find out more about PACMUN on our website.