Turkey, Bulgaria, Germany – these are only some of the nations the delegates of the Bayern Model United Nations Conference (BayernMUN) 2017 came from.
Over 140 young people from more than 20 different countries gathered at Heilig-Geist-Spital in the heart of Nuremberg.
Simulating the United Nations General Assembly, they discussed international security and terrorism. By cooperating in coalitions, the delegates evolved substantial proposals on how to tackle these issues. Obviously, they were to consider the topic at hand by maintaining the perspective of the countries they were representing. In the impressive medieval city hall where the conference took place, the young men and women had the chance to show and to further improve their rhetoric and negotiation skills.
The three days of BayernMUN were intense. Nonetheless, having fun also is an important factor at any MUN conference, which is why a lounge at Nuremberg’s biggest cinema was reserved for the participants. After the second – and most challenging day – had passed, the delegates could enjoy some drinks and get to know each other on an informal level in a delightful atmosphere.
Before the conference, some of the participants took part in the “Blockseminar”; a preparatory course for students of Friedrich-Alexander University. This seminar continues increasing in scope. So what is it that makes BayernMUN so attractive for so many young men and women? Obviously, it is a practical soft skills training, which many students deem an appropriate addition to their courses of studies.
But apart from the individual benefits, any MUN conference raises the delegates’ awareness of global issues. International terrorism, the rule of law, freedom of religion – no matter which topic the delegates choose to discuss, they will inevitably learn about the complexity of these issues. And they are likely to realize that none of these challenges can be faced unilaterally by a single state; neither during the simulation nor in reality. Considering current developments such as the dreadful renaissance of nationalism – this is a truly valuable lesson to learn.
Therefore, MUN in general and BayernMUN in particular is not only an individual learning experience. It is also a societal relevant contribution to fight the sinister ghosts of the past, which rightwing populists consider to be the future.
von Valentin Held
Bildquelle des Vorschaubilds: UNSN e.V.;