MUN gives students international perspective

by Alejandra Cruz
Staff Writer

Debate and negotiation will surround San Francisco when delegates from more than 100 colleges, including the University of La Verne’s Model United Nations (MUN) representatives, meet in a mock United Nations conference.

Six members of ULV’s MUN group will travel to San Francisco April 10-14 to represent Nigeria. Other UN members will also be represented by colleges and universities throughout the United States.

“We are very happy to represent Nigeria. We like controversial countries,”said Dr. John Jang, MUN adviser, professor of history and government and director of the International Studies Institute.

According to Dr. Jang, a team’s success is exhibited by the country they are assigned. If a team is considered successful, it is assigned major countries in the security council. In the past, ULV has represented the Soviet Union and Israel, both members of the security council.

Members must prepare by researching every aspect of the country and defending the position the actual UN officials take on the issues discussed.

The success of a team is determined by the number of resolutions they sponsor or co-sponsor. The teams’ position on issues discussed must parallel those given by actual UN representatives in their country. Students must also defend their country’s viewpoints on every topic.

Although the conference is not judged, Dr. Jang says individuals attending the convention can tell whether a team is successful.

“If a country is attacked and they can’t defend themselves, then it is obvious that the team is not successful,”said Dr. Jang.

Of the 12 MUN members at ULV, only six were chosen to attend the conference due to budget complications and amount of preparation each student displayed.

“I wanted to appoint students who were well prepared and actively involved in the club,” said Dr. Jang.

The students are Cynthia Harmon, Cynthia Wong, Noritaka Terada, David Randall, Chad Davis and Gabriella Tempestoso, all seniors.

As a result of decreased funds received from ASF, students have to help pay for their own hotel rooms in addition to food expenses.

However, the club is working on raising money to help make up the difference by selling greeting cards.

Despite the financial setback, Dr. Jang says the team will still attend the conference and is confident in their performance.

“We’re successful considering we are a small school,” said Dr. Jang.

Dr. Jang, who has been the adviser of ULV’s MUN chapter for 28 years, began his affiliation as an undergraduate student at UCLA. He has continued his involvement as an active West Los Angeles United Nations Association charter member.

“[MUN] provides better understanding of the international scene,” said Dr. Jang. “Students are able to appreciate our society and culture as well as other countries.”

Alejandra Cruz
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