ISF Waterloo students shine at Italian Model United Nations

ISF Waterloo students shine at Italian Model United Nations

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Nine senior ISF Waterloo students joined the recent IMUN in Rome to practise their skills in a competitive environment and learn about the world — an opportunity that the school will continue to offer each year. [Contributed by ISF Waterloo]

Each year, ISF International school chooses a key issue or anniversary as a school theme. This year the United Nations was selected as it is commemorating 70 years of the service around the world. 

As a school, many different activities have been devised to celebrate this event. Just last month we celebrated the occasion by creating our own Peace tree in the school grounds. Each child from pre-school to A-level wrote their thoughts about peace on a card and hung it on the tree. The middle years students have been working on cross-curricula activities based on UN protected geographical and historical sites. 

Nine senior students were also given the opportunity of a lifetime — to travel to Rome in January to attend the Italian Model United Nations simulation. 

The IMUN is an extra-curricula activity where students role-play delegates of the United Nations and simulate UN committees. Thousands of high school, and college students from around the world participated in IMUN in January in Rome. This requires substantial researching, public speaking, debating, and writing skills, as well as critical thinking, teamwork, and leadership abilities for all the students involved. At the end of the conference, outstanding delegates in each committee are recognised. 

“I found myself leading a group of developing countries on the topic of LGBT (lesbian, bisexual, gay, transsexual) and human rights. This meant that I had a group of nations that have started developing rights for the LGBT community but had not finished doing so — countries such as Bolivia," said Usman, a participating ISF student. 

Each of our students received a country to represent in the meetings and set the task of debating real issues on the UN agenda. As ‘delegates’ during the simulation they were required to participate in discussions, take part in speeches, prepare draft simulations and recommendations addressed to other states, organise and negotiate with allies, resolve conflicts and learn to move within the rules of the procedure. 

“This experience taught me to appreciate more what the United Nations does for the world, l met new people and got to practice other languages. It gave me a better view of how things work and how decisions are made," Gemma Tranquillini, a 16-year-old ISF student said.

We were happy to see that all our students eagerly participated with Usman Bilal Ahmad being selected by his committee to represent their paper and speak at the final full committee. ISF Waterloo is very proud of the students who set a shining example of teamwork, friendship, positivity and respect.

Usman stated that,"The whole experience was outstanding and really did open my eyes to what it's like to participate in a more competitive environment with other people who are equally as interested in politics as I am.” 

The days were long with many hours spent in the conference, but no time was wasted as it was a great opportunity to visit Rome. As much of the city was explored as possible, visiting historical sites as well as tasting new foods. 

The trip was so successful that ISF Waterloo will continue to offer this opportunity each year to all senior secondary students.

Contributed by ISF Waterloo

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