Schreiber hosts Long Island schools at Model UN Conference

Student delegates debate global issues at club conference

Jamie Levin, Contributing Writer

On March 15 and 16, Schreiber High School hosted its seventh annual Model United Nations conference. More than 200 students from all over Long Island participated, an exponential increase from past years. Over the course of two days, students were able to debate, discuss, and resolve conflicts currently plaguing the world.

All 200 students who participated in Port’s conference were placed into one out of the 10 UN committees running at the conference, where they would spend their two days of debate. This year, Port hosted an array of UN committees, including the General Assembly, Interpol, Security Council, Special Political and Decolonization Committee, World Health Organization, and Ad Hoc Security Council. Each committee at the conference was chaired by at least three members of the Schreiber High School Model United Nations Club.

Chairs spent the weeks leading up to the conference preparing to run their committees. Every day after school, Port UN chairs would spend time creating intriguing background guides for their committees’ topics of debate, type crises that their committees would have to face during the conference, and practice running their committees in various classrooms. On the final week before the conference, Port MUNC members made their annual trip to Costco to collect the supplies necessary for each committee. The trip was a success as usual, with hundreds of folders, pens, note pads, and post-its purchased by the Port club.

Many of those who participated believe that their hard work and preparation truly paid off with a successful conference. All of the committees ran smoothly, and Port MUNC received ample amounts of positive feedback from Model UN advisors of other Long Island schools. The delegates from these schools praised Port MUNC’s value for relevant topics occurring around the world.

They especially enjoyed the World Health Organization’s discussion of LGBTQ mental health care rights, the anti-vaccination movement, and access to abortion care.

“When crafting the topics for World Health Organization, we believed it was important to include relevant issues,” said junior World Health Organization chair Priya Chainani.  “Probably the most pressing one was the anti-vax movement, especially because throughout the conference and even in the days after I was getting notifications on my phone about a measles outbreak, or the recent banning of un-vaccinated students from a NYC school. It’s interesting to debate the possible solutions to real life problems, and how the purpose of MUN contributes to a greater cause.”

Many of these delegates also enjoyed participating in this year’s Historical Security Council. Using interactive videos and crisis events, the Historical Security Council was able to simulate the National Convention at the time of the French Revolution. Delegates across Long Island had a blast simulating the discussions that took place in the Convention as the Reign of Terror in France became inevitable.

This was the last Port MUNC conference for seniors Megan Day and Josh Gitman.

“Above all, the Port Model UN team should enjoy what they made happen,” said Day.

Not only was the conference a success in many aspects, but it could not have happened without the organization and accessibility of Gitman and Day.