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Winchester High School Model UN team hosts 7th annual conference

The staff team of the Winchester Model UN Conference. COURTESY PHOTO/NOAH MULCAHY

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On April 28, the Winchester High School Model United Nations team hosted its 7th Annual WinMUN Conference — short for Winchester Model UN Conference.

With over 150 student delegates from 17 schools across four states attending, WinMUN holds the prestigious title of one of the largest student-led, public high school Model UN conference in New England.

The General Assembly Dias, left to right, Vice-Chair Renee Lubomirski, Chair Gauri Bansal, and Vice-Chair Diya Patlolla. COURTESY PHOTO/NOAH MULCAHY

Back in September 2023, preparation for this monumental conference began. Executive Board Members of the club, Harper Lindsay, Anya L’Esperance, Georgia Keeler, Gauri Bansal, and Aden Huang, began selecting committee topics and staff members. The goal was to have a diverse array of opportunities for participants to thrive.

Soon enough, four committees emerged: a General Assembly on food insecurity and child marriage, a Specialized Committee on the “Free Britney” movement, a Joint Crisis Committee on the era of Prohibition in 1924 Chicago, and an Ad-Hoc committee about the world of Marvel.

Over the course of seven months, the WinMUN staff took time out of their busy high school schedule to make the conference a reality. The team collaborated to write 20-page background guides for each committee that outlined critical knowledge and also created character dossiers.

Not only that, they made material for each of the workshops, printed and folded placards and name tags for each delegate, and most importantly, fostered a supportive environment where all delegates' unique perspectives would be welcomed and included.

A delegate in the Joint Crisis Committee: Chicago, 1924 writing a note. COURTESY PHOTO/NOAH MULCAHY

On the day of WinMUN, delegates shuffled into the WHS auditorium for the opening ceremony, eagerly listening to the Secretariat speak as a thrilling day full of debate, diplomacy, negotiations, and collaborations awaited ahead of them. Following the opening ceremony, delegates entered various workshops ranging from beginner to advanced, before officially entering committee sessions.

Between the two 3-hour committee sessions, delegates flocked to downtown Winchester and up Main Street for lunch, helping support the local businesses simultaneously. After debate concluded, the award ceremony commenced with plenary speakers from each committee recapping the day.

Beyond debate, WinMUN supported Casa Myrna for this year’s philanthropy charity in an effort to spread awareness regarding domestic violence and alcoholism. Casa Myrna is a nonprofit organization based in Boston dedicated to providing services to domestic violence survivors such as financial literacy education, children’s services, housing assistance, etc.

Last year, WinMUN was able to raise $460 for the Elton John AIDS Foundation. This year, a new goal was set: $500. By the end of the day, the conference crushed the goal and raised over $500 in donations, all of which would be sent to Casa Myrna.

Specialized Committee: Free Britney Vice-Chair Eddie Stewart pied. COURTESY PHOTO/NOAH MULCAHY

An incentive awaited each milestone to the goal — whether it be hot seat, or a prank call by the chair. The committee with the highest funds per capita had the opportunity to pie their chair in the face, which ended up being Specialized Committee Vice-Chair, Eddie Stewart!

Looking back on another successful year of WinMUN, the incoming WHS Model UN Executive Board Members strive to reach the same level of excellence and elevate the standards for WinMUN VIII. The team hopes to spread the word and is excited to see new students attend next year!

For more information, visit www.thewinmun.com

Renee Lubomirski, Aden Huang and Noah Mulcahy are all students at Winchester High School.

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