Model UN returns from DC

Model UN returns from DC

Jenna Liu

This past Sunday the RBHS Model UN team returned back from a three-day long experience at the North American Invitational Model United Nations (NAIMUN) in Washington D.C. The team brought back four Verbal Commendations, the equivalent of a fourth-place award, from the conference. This was a remarkable achievement given that the vast majority of the team consisted of rookies, said senior team member C.J. Phillips.
“The team was mostly new people, which was exciting,” Phillips said. “I think as a team we were really successful and I think we learned the ropes so I expect us to be even better next year.”
Junior Michael Pennella, who was one of only three returning team members, likewise echoed the importance of education, which was heavily emphasized in the RBHS Model UN team’s rebuilding year. 
“We didn’t come here with the intention of automatically trying to beat everyone,” Pennella said. “We came with the intention of learning what Model UN was about and using that knowledge for the future.”
Nevertheless, the team still managed to bring back some hardware, with Phillips in particular earning a Verbal Commendation for portraying Sen. Patrick Leahy in a simulation of the U.S. Senate. As this was Phillips’ first year attending NAIMUN, he said the experience was much different from what he was expecting.
“I didn’t expect it to be as much of a community as it was,” Phillips said. “It was very friendly and I met a lot of people that I really liked and am Facebook friends with now.”
With NAIMUN just a week gone, Pennella said he will always remember the conference as one of the best experiences of his life.
“It was just the most exciting time I’ve had in a long time,” Pennella said. “I not only learned a lot about myself but also about how to be a good leader. I think anyone who wants to do Model UN should definitely try it because it is one of the best extracurriculars available.”
By Jenna Liu