Model United Nations Society board meets with the JCU alumna Elena Ravano and the classmates who founded the JCU MUN 14 years ago.
By Julissa Castro-Ruiz / Matthew staff
On Oct. 14, the JCU Model United Nations Society board met with the JCU alumna Elena Ravano and some of her classmates who founded the JCU MUN in 2007. As JCU alumni shared their MUN experiences, the current board listened awestruck to how the Society was formed and its beginnings. Members’ experiences ranged from getting stuck abroad due to a snowstorm to participating in various MUN conferences.
The current MUN Society has more than fifteen active members, making it one of the largest organizations at JCU, with its members participating in conferences throughout the globe. However, it was not always like that.
Back in 2007, as Elena Ravano and her classmates embarked on this journey, its members had little to no experience in MUN. Nevertheless, their passion for international affairs and debating brought them together to form the Society. Through bakes sales and other activities, they raised money and participated in the 2007 Harvard MUN. They recall the event as being mind-opening and thrilling. University students from around the world came together to debate foreign policy and international relations, preparing months in advance for this event. The 2007 JCU MUN Society members treasure this experience and regard it as an inspirational moment. The meeting between past and present generations was filled with laughter, anecdotes, and advice. Becoming a successful exchange between both boards.
In turn, the current board members shared the progress the Society has made since its founding. For example, the MUN Society offers its members scholarships to participate in conferences abroad, which incentivize participation and involvement in the group. At their weekly meetings, they do workshops and mock sessions to successfully prepare their members to participate in the conferences. Apart from the JCU MUN Society, JCU holds its annual MUN Conference, which partners with universities across Europe—bringing attention to both the university and the Society and creating networking opportunities for their participants. The members also collaborate with other JCU clubs to expand their outreach and fully develop every area of it.
At the encounter, the alumni proudly congratulated us, happy to see the fruits of what they founded 14 years ago. As both alumni and current students gave their closing remarks, they all felt hopeful for the future of the Society and its impact for not only the current students but also the alumni.
“My experience in MUN was mind-opening, thrilling, and challenging. As for the future of the Society, I hope that it continues to thrive, make us proud, and remains as a pillar for the JCU community.”
– Alumni Elena Ravano
“Coming from JCU, we are already used to a multi-cultural, international scene, so I felt right at home…I think the MUN experience has given me more tolerance towards news about seemingly odd foreign policy, constantly reminding me to check a country’s history and track record for possible explanations. Post-COVID, I hope the members keep going to interesting MUNs and raise awareness of American overseas colleges. Maybe you will inspire someone to also spend some time abroad and learn more about the world first-hand rather than from a book.”
– Alumni Sophia Wiik