Village School’s Model UN
A tense silence floods the auditorium, fingers cross, hearts stop, and then… Village delegates erupt into celebration. The Village High School Model United Nations team had just won Best Large Delegation at the Houston Area MUN conference for the third consecutive year. HAMUN is the oldest Model UN Conference in the southern United States and one of the largest conferences in Texas and the Southwestern United States. The conference was created in 1975 when a Memorial High School world history teacher, Andrea Flynn, decided to create a simulation of the United Nations as an educational program for Houston high school students. From its small pool of 18 student delegates, HAMUN has grown to include many high schools in the Houston area and throughout Texas. Today, over 1,000 student delegates attend the conference.
The individual awards from Village are as follows (Best Delegate is 1st place, Outstanding Delegate is 2nd place, and Honorable Mention is 3rd place):
- Joao Guilherme Borges Herry as Angela Merkel, awarded Best Delegate in the European Union Council (Specialized Crisis Committee)
- Aditi Ramesh Iyer as Muhammad Mansur Ali, awarded Best Delegate in the Bangladeshi Liberation War (specialized Crisis committee)
- Angeli Zhao as Chile, awarded Best Delegate in General Assembly Plenary
- Jay Natarajan as Germany, awarded Best Delegate in SOCHUM
- Osarieme Mike Irabor as Germany, awarded Best Delegate in WHO
- Tanmay Rai as Germany, awarded Best Delegate in CSTI
- Aryan Shah as Albania, awarded Best Delegate in NATO
- Caroline Hsu as Lebanon, awarded Best Delegate in OIC
- Mauricio Espinosa as Chile, awarded Outstanding Delegate in SOCHUM
- Eddie Wang as Germany, awarded Outstanding Delegate in SPECPOL
- Nirav Mandhani as Germany, awarded Outstanding Delegate in Legal
- Selina Zhang as Germany, awarded Outstanding Delegate in Legal
- Darsh Jaganmohan as Norway, awarded Outstanding Delegate in NATO
- Alexander Ilacqua as Brothi, awarded Outstanding Delegate in Harappan Collapse (Specialized Crisis Committee)
- Daniel Itkins as Zoran Milanović, awarded Outstanding Delegate in European Union council (Specialized Crisis Committee)
- Hanaa Salemi as Armenia, awarded Honorable Mention in DISEC
- Rohan Bendapudi as Senegal, awarded Best Research in UNFCC
- Eshaal Merchant as Syria, awarded Best Research in OIC
- Tanmay Rai as Germany, awarded Best Research in CSTI
But winning a conference is not a first-time achievement for the team this year. VHSMUN has been the highest-ranking team across multiple conferences. Earlier this school year, from Friday, Nov. 4 to Sun., Nov. 6, 2022, our team competed at the Central Texas Model United Nations conference (CTMUN) hosted by the University of Texas at Austin. After sitting through several hours of conferencing, Village delegates were creative in their solutions and professional as diplomats, earning an unbelievable amount of individual recognition. The team took 35 kids to CTMUN and came home with 12 individual awards, including five best delegate awards (1st place), two outstanding delegate awards (2nd place), and five honorable mentions (3rd place). Aside from phenomenal individual victories, for many seniors, this was a heartfelt farewell to a conference and trip that has been instrumental to their high school experiences. For novices and underclassmen, on the other hand, these conferences are an opportunity to form friendships that last a lifetime.
“CTMUN is special because the team hypes you up,” said sophomore Leen Binnasser, a crisis delegate in the Harry Potter committee. “Via shared struggles of our committees, I get to form bonds with my friends that I can’t find on school grounds.”
Every year, CTMUN also awards a "Best Large Delegation" award to a school that has demonstrated exemplary leadership, the highest amount of individual committee recognition, and model diplomacy within MUN. This year, out of over 50 central Texas private and public schools, VHS was named BLD for the second consecutive year.
Individual accolades at CTMUN are as follows:
- Mauricio Espinosa Rondon as Pedro Carmona, Presidente de Fedecamaras, named Best Delegate in the Venezuela Crisis: Punto Sin Regreso
- Nirav Mandhani as Janet Yellen, named Best Delegate in WEF (World Economic Forum)
- Angeli Yining Zhao as Latvia, named Outstanding Delegate in General Assembly Plenary
- Sevastian Oti as Frank Konkowski, named Outstanding Delegate on the Chicago City Council Crisis Committee
- Aditi Ramesh Iyer as Andy Cooke Welling, named Best Delegate in INTERPOL
- Leen Binnasser as Peter McLagen, awarded Honorable Mention in the Harry Potter: Year at Hogwarts simulation
- Eshaal Merchant as Lybia, awarded Honorable Mention in DISEC (Disarmament and International Security)
- Akshat Kumar as Philippines, awarded Honorable Mention in ECOSOC (Economic and Social Council)
- Caroline Hsu as China, named Best Delegate in ECOSOC (Economic and Social Council)
- Uzair Jinnah as Chad, named Best Delegate in UNEP (UN Environmental Programme)
- Rahman Ovezov as Morocco, awarded Honorable Mention in General Assembly Plenary
- Alexander Ilacqua, awarded Honorable Mention as Lucius Aruntius in Special Crisis Rome: War of Actium
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