(Silhouettes person human via Pixabay)
At universities up and down the country, students participate in a variety of extracurricular activities. Some take part in sport, enjoying the health benefits as well as weekly social gatherings, others join more academically focused groups. One such activity, is the Model United Nations (MUN), allowing students to take on the roles of delegates for different countries and act out UN meetings, debating with each other. Whether or not you’re politically minded, joining the MUN could be a great way to enhance your job prospects.
The UK is currently experiencing a record level of employment and has increased by 28% (7.5+ million) in the past thirty years. This is largely due to sectors such as technology, administration and information communication. Advances in technology, as well as the changing nature of business since the 80’s, have lead to a growing demand in highly skilled professionals. So much so, that administrative and IT positions often ask for a degree level qualifications from their applicants. The model UN is a great way of standing out from the thousands of other university graduates. It’s a way of saying, I spent my time doing something that was not only challenging and thought-provoking, but that enhanced my skill set.
The activities included in the model UN are very transferable and relate to some the most sought after skills in employment:
Communication - Naturally, employers want someone who can verbally deliver information in a confident. clear and concise way. Involving yourself with the MUN is a great way of demonstrating to employers that you are not only able to do this, but you are also comfortable with public speaking.
Public Speaking - If you are one of those people who dreads public speaking, don’t panic! With a friendly, social atmosphere, the MUN is a great place to overcome any issues you might have. You will be around like-minded people who will all remember the sinking feeling of their first speech, and the elation and sense of achievement that came afterwards.
Leadership Skills - Debates, in order to function, require participants to take on certain roles. One of these roles is the chairperson, who is responsible for ensuring that the debate is as productive as possible. This means making sure that each country is able to speak throughout the conference. They are also responsible for giving awards to the best delegates, displaying evaluative skills.
A final reason why joining the MUN would be a good idea is that it’s fun! It’s not all sitting in a room theoretically talking about world issues. The conferences are a great way of networking with students from other countries and the social side to these events is always fruitful.