Langley Model UN hosts its first VIMUNC

Laura Coffey

Langley alumnus, Greg Adams, Chairs with Co-Chair sophomore Audrey Fahlberg in the Vietnam War: American Presidential Cabinet at VIMUNC.

Katherine Rohloff, News Editor

At Langley’s first ever Model UN conference on Friday and Saturday March 21st and 22nd, the entire world, except for the United States, was turned communist and tragically, the beloved Harry Potter was murdered.  Throughout the two days of the conference, Langley’s hallways were filled with wizards, diplomats, prime ministers and presidents as Langley’s award-winning Model UN team hosted its very first conference, VIMUNC.  Over 700 students from middle schools and high schools around the D.C. Metropolitan area as well as schools from Richmond participated.

VIMUNC is unique from other MUN conferences because the entire conference was run by the Langley students with help from Physics teacher, Mr. Scott Stone, and Spanish teacher, Ms. Jennifer Stocks.  Each of the twelve committees was chaired by a Langley MUN alumnus as well as current Langley MUN-ers. “There’s really a lot to do as a chair especially in crisis committees because you’re not only dealing with the delegates within committee but effective communication skills with your staff and crisis director are important. Everyone needs to be on their feet and ready to go at any time. But all in all, I learned so much, it was so much fun,” said junior Rachel Kim, Co-Chair of Dumbledore’s Army Committee. As co-chairs, students were in charge of moderating the caucuses (meetings in which ideas are discussed in MUN format) and also grade the position papers that the students completed after the opening ceremony about their assigned country’s position in order to help determine awards.

In addition to committees, other Langley MUN-ers ran crisis committees. These are special committees in which students are presented situations from fictional novels, movies, or historical eras, and instead of choosing a delegation, they choose a character or historical figure. Students are then hit with crises and are asked to work together to respond to these crises.  “What I liked most was creating surprising crises and seeing how the delegates uniquely came up with clever ways to deal with them,” said junior Arjun Dwivedy, “…we made the whole world communist except for the USA.”

MUN-ers communicated with each other through a variety of ways in order to bridge communication between the committee rooms. One way this was done was by having some Langley Mun-ers deliver notes from debaters and co-chairs to their recipients. In addition to that, Co-chairs kept in constant contact with the crisis committees through Google docs. These crisis committees then would answer the questions by looking up facts, creating new crises on request and delivering messages to debaters.
Besides running committees and bridging communications, Mun-ers also sold candy grams throughout the event; they sold around hundred and fifty.  At first they were going to donate the profits from the sales to a charity, “…but unfortunately Langley can only approve a limited number of charity projects every year and we didn’t make the cut. The profits are going to go toward running VIMUNC next year, so hopefully we can put on an even better conference,” said Chief of Staff, senior Grace Sununu.

During the awards ceremony, over hundred individual awards were given out to debaters who showcased exceptional skills such as diplomacy and presentation, speaking and writing skills, and most importantly, leadership. The schools that won awards were:

The Joseph R. Colingo Award for Diplomacy which was named after Secretary General, senior Natalie Fahlberg’s grandfather who passed away the week before, was given to the most diplomatic school: Henrico High School

Best Large Delegation: Maggie L. Walker Governor’s School

Outstanding Large Delegation: WT Woodson High School

Best Small Delegation: The Sidwell Friends Upper School

Best Small Delegation: Loudoun Valley High School

Best Middle School: Kilmer Middle School

After the conference, one of the attendees, Colleen Mulrooney from Robinson High School, messaged Director of Registration, junior Katherine Cassidy, and said, “I have been doing MUN for three years. I have been to local and national conferences. And might I just say, VIMUNC was my favorite conference out of all of them. You guys did an amazing job!”  After months and months of planning, VIMUNC was an overall success.

“I think it went very well for a first conference. We were well-organized and everything was put together quite nicely. Despite a few kinks, it worked out well,” said Fahlberg.

Sophomore Ameen Al-Dalli , Co-Chair for the United States Cabinet addressing the North Korean Conflict ,  added, “Looking forward to hosting VIMUNC II next year!”

Photos By: Laura Coffey