BY NUHA ISLAM
In an increasingly interconnected world, it is important to be a world citizen, not just an American one. On January 16 and 17, the National Honor Society (NHS) and Model United Nations (MUN) will be partnering to put together a mock debate showcase for high school students that propels this idea forward.
“As high schoolers, we are incredibly close being able to vote,” MUN Co-President Shaddi Abdala said. “It is imperative that students be informed of the greater world around them.”
In the auditorium, pressing foreign policy issues the nation faces will be brought to the forefront and conveyed in ways that students will find simple to understand.
The first interest meeting will be held on December 6 to assign roles to those willing to participate. The United States, Russia, Venezuela, Syria, North Korea, United Kingdom and France will all be represented independently. The chosen appointees will conduct extensive research to understand the country’s’ stance and best advocate solutions for them.
Along with country delegates, other jobs are needed, including moderators, assistant speech preppers and decorating committees.
Everything from the refugee crisis and Russian collusion are on the docket for discussion. The mock debate is an attempt to help young adults develop unique viewpoints and learn new perspectives.
“In tournaments we hear about various problems from different countries points of view. It has taught me a lot about how to empathize with others and create compelling arguments,” MUN member Sabrina Rapaport said. “The goal is not to teach people what to think, but to give them all the tools they need to make informed decisions.”
Local impacts of global issues is one of the key ambitions of this year’s presentation. In prior years, the mock debate aligned with the presidential election or the primaries. With no election cycle occurring during the school year, discourse of foreign and domestic policy will take up the bulk of discussion.
“Contrary to the candidate debates, these are ongoing topics. The presidential elections are useful to use to elect the leader who will be at the forefront of these issues,” NHS Academic Coordinator Alex Katsotis said. “The way they carry out operations is just as worth our considerations.”
The current and future policies enacted by those we elect are often times not examined closely by the general public, which may cause issue as without a general understanding of what something entails, the people may be subject to policies that they may disagree with.
That’s why it’s important to open up discussion among students and give them the information they need to formulate their own opinions.
“Diversity in discourse is excellent,” NHS member Michelle Adelman said. “However, no matter which political party or viewpoint you agree with, it is crucial to go in informed of the situation before you make your judgement.”
Photo by Lariat photography