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For 4 days they met in their respective committees as representatives of New Zealand. The committees ranged from the General Assembly 1st-3rd committees, the Special Committee on Peacekeeping and the Economic and Social Council, to the UN Development Programme, UNEP and UN Women. One of their fearless leaders, the then Vice President (yours truly), entered the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference committee to cover for students who could not attend. Despite having last been in committee over a year ago, and only 2 weeks worth of studying and research, I was excited to enter committee again.
Our team trains to be committee leaders and consensus builders, much like the diplomats you'll find at the UN. Not only do we make sure to do as much research as possible and understand the topic in depth, but we make sure our students can give speeches on the spot, can incorporate others into the writing of the working paper/resolution, handle tough-to-deal-with delegates and especially "alphas", and maintain their composure and energy for the whole week. After multiple sessions, so many speeches, sleep deprived nights, unhealthy amounts of coffee, lots of time in caucus, negotiating on the peaceful use of nuclear energy, and my teammates on racial discrimination, women's empowerment, environmental sustainability, peacekeeping, and the Post-2015 development agenda, the conference came to a close on March 26th. We were tired, but we were glad that we came out winners: nearly all of our resolutions passed, and my committee in the NPT adopted 6 out of 7 by consensus. And just when we awaited the close of session, they announced the Position Paper Awards. *Cue Drumroll*
Our team won 5 out of 10 Position Paper Awards, the highest our team has received to date! We received one in each of the following committees: General Assembly 2nd Committee (which discusses economic and development issues); General Assembly 3rd Committee (which discusses social and humanitarian issues); Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC); UN Development Programme; and the Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference committee!! Considering I had only a few days to prepare the paper, I was ecstatic to hear the Directors of my committee considered it award worthy. All of our award recipients were sooo happy, we went out to a Japanese Karaoke bar to celebrate hahaha! It was a very fun night.
Of course, the good news would continue the next day when we were awarded the Outstanding Delegation Award, the highest honors your team can receive at a NMUN conference! You can all imagine what is was like to have all the months of preparation, all of our hard work, recognized by NMUN.
Which is why I am also proud to say that the Division of Student Affairs awarded our organization the Bayless Group Leadership Award! This award is given only to one student organization on campus each year that has demonstrated a commitment to student leadership, both from its members and Officers, and has contributed to the development of future leaders at UCR. If you thought we were happy to have won all those awards before, you have no idea how happy it made us that we received this honor from our school. We are truly blessed to have so many hard working members who made this year, and my last year as a UCR undergraduate, the best year ever!
From all of us, and from me especially, thank you for reading and may you as well find success in your MUN career. :- )