Model United Nations club teaches foreign relations


Courtesy of MUN

Emanuela Gallo, Editor-in-Chief

Model United Nations is an organization at Baruch College dedicated to the discussion of international issues and the development of its members.

“We strive to unify people,” said Raisa Binte Afiz, BMUN’s treasurer.

“Because of different ideas and beliefs, it’s hard to create a peaceful compromise that everybody will be happy with. We want to maximize the effectiveness of a resolution and how it can help most people in the world.”

The club works to improve public speaking and research skills. At their weekly meetings, members are taught parliamentary procedures, trained for debates and practice their argumentative and problem-solving techniques.

BMUN’s traveling team attends several conferences a year, such as a conference at McGill University in Montreal, Canada and the upcoming NYU Crisis Conference.

“At the NYU conference, students go into committees that are formed after the Security Council, instead of the General Assembly. It’s a lot more fast-paced,” said the club’s president, Anacaona Rodriguez Martinez.

In April, members of the team will head to one of the biggest MUN conferences in the world, where they will represent the United Kingdom.

MUN also holds open house debates, where any student at Baruch can participate in a discussion about global issues.

“It’s interesting to see how our returning students get really excited about the debates, and how people who have never heard of or tried MUN get excited as well,” Rodriguez Martinez said.

The club is open to those of all majors and backgrounds, deeming their intellectual diversity as an advantage to the team.

“We get ideas from all these different sectors,” Binte Afiz said. “This builds a great community where you feel comfortable not only sharing ideas but getting good feedback on how to build on those ideas.” Members have different motives behind why they joined MUN.

“I’ve been doing Model UN since sophomore year of high school,” said Neel Hatwar, a finance major. “I enjoyed working on issues that were so important, for instance, solving the nuclear crisis or working on issues to eradicate poverty.”

In addition, the club fosters the personal and academic lives of its members. Students are able to depend on others and develop at their own pace.

“Others were so willing to help, even when I stumbled or messed up. It was a great learning environment, which is why I got a grasp of it way faster than I thought I would,” Binte Afiz said.

This is a shared sentiment among BMUN members.

“It made me come out of my comfort zone and taught me to be able to communicate clearly,” Rodriguez Martinez said.

BMUN also contributes to its members’ professional lives.

“When you go to the business setting, you can apply these skills.” Hatwar said. “It teaches you so much about real life and an insight into how these things work. It’s one of the reasons why I love MUN so much.”