Bellevue College’s Model United Nations attended the National Model United Nations conference in New York from April 9 to 13, competing against numerous four-year universities in the U.S. and around the world. Led by Dr. Tim Jones, program chair for political science at BC, the MUN team returned with an Honorable Delegation Award and five Outstanding Position Paper Awards.
At BC, MUN is a 10-credit series of three separate classes offered in two tracks, the 100-level version for new students and a 200-level one for returning students. “The sequence is specifically designed to prepare students to participate in the National Model United Nations conference in New York City – the biggest such conference in the world,” according to the BC MUN website.
NMUN is a national conference hosted in New York, Washington D.C., Canada and the Galapagos. These students represent a nation or a non-governmental organization to discuss international affairs and find solutions to world issues.
BC represented Algeria at the conference, preparing through the two-credit class in the fall and a three-credit course in the winter. “They learned world geography, learned about the UN, did research on Algeria and the committee that they were assigned as well as the topics on the committee they were assigned,” explained Jones. Students also wrote position papers, which “articulated Algeria’s positions on the topics each student was researching for the conference,” said Jones.
Members of BC MUN returned with a few recognitions. “This year’s delegation won more awards than any previous delegation,” said Jones, “As a group, the students won an honorable delegation award, which is a big honor considering they were competing with students from around the country and the world, most of them juniors and seniors studying at four-year universities.” The team was also awarded five distinctions for their position papers.
This is not BC’s first national conference. The NMUN has recognized BC as well as other schools as a dedicated participant that has committed between 20 to 29 years to the conference.
In the following school year, BC will again attend the New York conference in the spring, the Seattle conference in the fall and a conference in the Galapagos in winter, according to Jones. Students who are interested in traveling with the team to the national conferences must register for the three courses.
“MUN is a great opportunity for students because they get to develop important life skills including public speaking, research, writing, negotiation and diplomacy,” described Jones, “Students can be most successful by taking the program seriously, working hard, asking questions and realizing they have an amazing opportunity to travel to cool places and interact with smart people from around the world while trying to solve real world problems.”