Emory’s Model United Nations (MUN) team won three awards at the National Collegiate Security Conference at Georgetown University during fall break.
This conference was the first of three that Emory’s team will participate in this fall. In the past, the team has participated in one conference per semester.
College sophomores Gina Chirillo and Dan Ziment, Wheel sports editor, won honorable delegate awards representing the United Kingdom in the Union for Mediterranean committee and Costa Rica in the United Nations Peacebuilding Commission committee, respectively. Chirillo is a Wheel
College freshman Ross Slutsky won the outstanding delegate award representing the state of Dihar in the India Parliament.
Slutsky said that in his committee, he was one of two students who won an outstanding delegate award.
“It came to me as a pleasant surprise,” Slutsky said. “I was in the largest committee with 90 people — I did not expect to come in with no prior experience and get that award.”
There are four types of awards given at MUN conferences including verbal commendations, honorable mentions, outstanding delegates and best delegate. Typically there is one best delegate award, one or two outstanding delegate awards, three to four honorable mentions and just a handful of verbal commendations per committee, according MUN Co-President Aaron Collett.
Although this is Slutsky’s first year in MUN, he said that lack of experience was not an issue. He said that he began to build that base in high school by reading more newspapers and publications such as The Economist.
“Preparation depends vastly on the individual,” Slutsky said. “Information is essential. Whatever information you can put out there is good — whatever background you can get is going to help.”
According to Collett, it was impressive for the team to win three awards with 12 participants, especially among larger teams that won fewer awards. For larger conferences, such as a conference at the University of Pennsylvania later this fall, the team will consist of about 20 members.
Schools like Harvard University, University of Pennsylvania and University of Chicago were also in attendance.
Slutsky said that he was honored by the award and proud of his achievement, but he is still reaching for more.
“Outstanding delegate is still not first place,” Slutsky said. “Next time I’m going to want that — I want the gavel.”
Collett said that accomplishments speak for MUN’s growth, but that they are not the main focus of the club.
“We don’t really focus on awards,” Collett said. “I see MUN as a way to learn about something that’s stimulating; it’s about education.”
— Contact Alice Chen