Alumni Stay in Touch

Model United Nations

— By Miranda Chinichian and Kyle Libby

Cal Poly Model UN
Model UN Team competes in Brasilia, Brazil, led by
coach Craig Arceneaux. Team members included:
Brandon O’Rourke, Chase Dean, Joanne Paucar,
Diana Nguyen, Luana Mello, Miranda Chinichian,
Aurora Chavez on Refugees.

Model United Nations (MUN) has served as the focal point of several college careers. At the surface MUN is an opportunity to explore international crises and long standing issues among different countries. We studied the institution at length, learned the importance and role of diplomats, and reviewed historic resolutions that have molded the UN to what it is today. But, the experience goes beyond the classroom. Like true diplomats, we attended conferences in San Francisco, New York, and Brasilia, Brazil. These conferences were the true application of Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing philosophy. At these conferences, we represented Germany, India, and Sudan while working with between 20 and 100 students on committees such as the General Assembly, Security Council, High Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, and the World Bank. 

Cal Poly Model UN
Model UN Team touring Brasilia

We took the knowledge we learned in the classroom and applied it in a range of different settings. Committee topics covered nuclear disarmament, sustainable development, and human rights, to name a few. After hashing out the details and particulars of simulated global politics, we then attended our final committee meeting at the UN General Assembly. There, we discussed all the resolutions that had been drafted over the week and voted on them in the very chamber where actual UN delegates cover the same issues.

Cal Poly Model UN
2017 Model UN Team competing in New York. Team
members included: Kyle Libby, Meagan Holt,
Rodrigo Rico-Gonzalez, Kelly Martinez,
Sayaka Tsugai, Michael Dyar, Luisa Tembo,
Rachel McLean, Katherine Tinder,
Miranda Chinichian, Georgina Bailey.

Behind the scenes, participating in MUN allowed us to explore beyond the UN experience. For instance, MUN is where we have made some of our closest friends. It allowed us to study, travel, and explore together. Each trip consisted of a new delegation of Cal Poly students, but by the end of every conference we all became a family connected by our passion for international relations. Also, these conferences stretched our networks of friends and colleagues as they now consist of students from all over the world. Without Cal Poly’s MUN program, we wouldn’t have been able to experience or even afford such trips. These experiences are something we are beyond grateful for. Ultimately, what MUN means to us cannot be adequately summed up into words.

Related Content