Model UN Virtual Again


Nick Pickel, Staff Writer

The defining project of the sophomore class’ Collegio experience is in full force: Model United Nations. Unlike many years prior, it will be completely virtual again this year for the second time.

Librarian, Ms. Borgen, who works with librarian Ms. Lovejoy, teachers, and students on the Model UN project said, “Most of our materials were already digital, but the library had to purchase or find alternatives to the few that aren’t online. We also migrated our learning materials from an outside website into OneNote and refreshed all the links and video tutorials, with the hope that students could find information more easily when working remotely,” in response to a question about how the project had to be changed for the online nature of this year’s project.

The Model UN project offers students a glimpse into how the United Nations operates, interacts, and solves problems. Students are assigned a country for which they will be a UN delegate with a partner. They will do research into a problem of their choice that faces their country and then move on to the second stage of research where they are assigned a committee with delegates of different countries to solve a certain global problem. Committees include population and human settlement, health, peace and security, women and children’s rights, environment, and global development.

Research takes the form of Noodletools notecards, which many students have a love-hate relationship with, as, “It doesn’t make research organization completely painless (it’s inherently a messy process),” according to Borgen, “But we’re confident the underlying principles (citing your sources, paying attention to the author’s credentials) will serve students well beyond Prep.”

When asked about what UN issue Borgen was interested to see be resolved, she said, “I’m really interested to see what COVID-related resolutions come up, seeing as it’s such a timely topic and completely brand-new this year.” She also noted that while some issues being resolved in Model UN can feel slightly removed to us in the United States, “[They] are not only issues developing in real-time, but they directly affect all of us.”

As of now, students are working on the resolution phase of Model UN. During this, they will write pre-ambulatory clauses and activating articles which will allow them to describe the issue with key terms, UN documents, statistics, and past actions, and then persuade that action is necessary.

Committees will present their months of hard work in June at the virtual Model UN conferences, which the librarians say they are, “Excited to see!”