Student Delegation Heads to Annual MUN Conference

An Update from Philidelphia, Friday 1-26-18

Greetings from the city of brotherly love (and diehard Eagles’ fans!)

The Besant Hill Model United Nations Delegation departed campus early on Wednesday morning for the 34th Ivy League Model United Nations Conference in Philadelphia, PA. We arrived excited but exhausted after a long day of travel. After a long night’s sleep, and a very filling breakfast at our favorite brunch place Green Eggs Cafe, the delegates spent the afternoon in training workshops on parliamentary procedure. After the Opening Ceremonies, all delegates went to their committees for the first of five committee sessions over this weekend.

This year, Besant Hill is representing the country of Kuwait on a variety of committees debating issues ranging from drone proliferation to the Yemen Civil War, deforestation of the Amazon to human trafficking. In addition, Besant Hill received two special seats this year: one on the elite Press Corps, where Ziqi Zhou ‘19 is acting as the news agency Al Jazeera for the entirety of the conference. Another special seat is filled by Clay Weisberg ‘18, acting as British politician Phil Wilson on a simulated 2020 British Parliament.

This morning, after a quick but delicious breakfast from the famous Reading Terminal Market, our entire group headed to the Eastern State Penitentiary National Historical Site for a tour of the famous American penitentiary designed and built in the 1830s. Combining historical exhibits with a thought-provoking contemporary exhibit Prisons Today: Questions in the Age of Mass Incarceration. This visit prompted many questions amongst our delegates on the ever-evolving definition of human rights, connecting this historical site visit to much of our work as Model United Nations delegates.

Late into this evening, delegates will be busy in their committees, building coalitions, and drafting working papers. We are all looking forward to a fun night out on the town tomorrow, complete with a huge Italian meal and ice skating under the stars at City Hall!

Cheryl MacPherson
Social Sciences Instructor