Victory At MUN


MUN President Alex Sukles holds the flag of the country AHS will be representing. Photo by Emma Cobb.

MUN President Alex Sukles holds the flag of the country AHS will be representing. Photo by Emma Cobb.

Last week Ashland High School Model United Nations Club returned from their annual spring conference with great success and the honor of representing a Big Five country next year.

Model United Nations, MUN, is offered at Ashalnd High School as a club while other schools in Oregon offer it as a class. MUN gives students the opportunity to present themselves as delegates from a member nation in the UN and uphold the ideals and wishes of that country. To participate in this amazing experience, one is only expected to write a few short, informational papers on the year’s agenda topics. These range from sovereignty to international trade, climate change to peace and common understanding in such nationals as the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. It is a brilliant learning experience to open one’s eyes and mind to the world that we live in.

This year, with the representation of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Kazakhstan and Yemen, the MUN group performed and gained valuable experience and inspiration that lead to their success in the “Big Five Bid.” This so-called bid is the proposal of a school for one of the elite countries in the United Nations: United Kingdom, French Fifth Republic, the People’s Republic of China, the Russian Federation, and the United States. These counties are counted as the “Big Five” because of their influence in the United Nations, their permanent membership on the Security Council and their power to veto any substantive resolution. With eight schools vying for the five spots, Ashland, along with Spray High School, was able to get the spot of the United States for next year from the inspirational speeches given by the leaders of the MUN and other participants. Freshmen Brielle Preskenis commented, “I really enjoyed it, and it was really interesting to argue another country’s point of view and broaden my point of view as the Islamic Republic of Iran. Even though we did not get our first choice of the Russian Federation in the “Big Five Bid,” I am really happy to get the US and have such a different view of MUN next year with the opposite views I practiced this year.”

The last Big Five country that AHS represented was the People’s Republic of China in 2010, and the last time Ashland represented the U.S. was in 2008. This is an exciting prospect for next year, for the Big Five hold immense influence in the preceding of the conference and are some of the best countries to be when going to the conference held at the University of Oregon.

If you are interested in joining MUN for next year please come talk to the presidents of MUN (Alexander Sukles or Emma Cobb) or one of the advisers (Matthew McKinnon, Bill Gabriel or Kathi Bowen-Jones), because Ashland’s unique privilege of representing the United States brings the necessity of more numbers and dedication.

“MUN is a fun experience,” Emma Cobb states. “It gives you insight into how our world works.” One should not cower from this opportunity; as the Secretary-General David Choi stated this year in his opening speech, “This is a chance to bring glory and to fight for your country.” The United States is our home and country; though Ashlanders’ opinions often differ from the majority’s, we have the chance to truly reveal and epitomize what a true American is.