The School Newspaper of Winston Churchill High School.

The Observer

The School Newspaper of Winston Churchill High School.

The Observer

The School Newspaper of Winston Churchill High School.

The Observer

WCHS Model UN crafts diplomatic triumphs

Photo courtesy of Krishna Gupta
From left, WCHS students Mira Wedam, Sneha David, Pavania Durbhakula, Anjali Tatavarthy, Anchal Sharma and Riya Wedam pose on the last day of the four-day conference for a congratulatory photo, holding their respective awards.

Their hearts race and their voices shake, as their anxiety slowly creeps up. Public speaking is a skill that is imperative in today’s world, yet the average high school student despises these situations. Despite this, there are still many people who enjoy these types of conditions, including those a part of WCHS’s Model United Nations (UN) club. This month, they have a chance to showcase their skills at Georgetown University, where they will compete in one of the biggest conferences in the nation: the North American Invitational Model United Nations (NAIMUN) conference.

“The main reason why I signed up for Model UN is because I am really interested in the world outside of us,” WCHS Model UN member and junior Krishna Gupta said. “People do not realize that there are bigger problems happening in other cities, and not just ours. Participating in NAIMUN is a way to voice these opinions.”

The annual NAIMUN is the most important forum that WCHS will be participating in, in which they have been looking forward to these dates since the start of the year. Because a successful conference is what all delegates aspire for, preparing for it is taken very seriously.

“While I have been researching, I have also been doing a lot of other things that would help me do my best at NAIMUN,” Gupta said. “I have been creating note cards to help memorize some of the main points that I want to present, as well as writing research papers that will increase my knowledge about the topics being discussed.”

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Not only have members of the club been preparing for this individually, but the club has come together in the past month to help maximize their time. With NAIMUN being right around the corner, the weekly “MUN-day” meetings have helped set everyone up for success.

“We have meetings right after school on Mondays [and] we discuss different ways that will help improve our speaking and communication skills to the next level,” WCHS sophomore Aryan Majmudar said. “We talk about different speaking strategies, practice simulations to help get a better feel for the conference and interact with one another to help get a better feel for the topics that will be presented.”

While the preparation for NAIMUN requires a lot of academic work, club members also always look forward to the conference for the social aspects it offers. Staying at Georgetown University gives students the chance to gain a preview of a typical college experience and be with their friends in the city for three nights — something that every teenager dreams of.

“It will certainly be exciting to see students from all over the nation travel to this conference,” Gupta said. “NAIMUN is one of the largest conferences of the year, so there will definitely be a diverse group of students there… I am looking forward to meeting new people.”

WCHS Model UN plans to represent WCHS the best that they can at NAIMUN on Feb. 15-18, 2024. Both its officers and members stress that those who are considering joining WCHS Model UN should not be deterred by their lack of public speaking abilities, as these skills will be developed over time. Public speaking is an art that comes differently for everyone, and students should always try to be persistent and confident in whatever they do.

“I would say to always keep trying, no matter what,” Majmudar said. “If you mess up during a speech, assignment or even anything in life, do not worry about it. Everyone has been in the same boat as you, so trusting that you will respond correctly to the challenges that you receive is very important.”

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