Written by Aayush Dubey
The Model United Nations (MUN) club has taken recent success in attending the Stanford conference and hosting their own conference at Gunn in October.
According to club president senior Varun Narayan, the club faced delegates coming from schools around California and schools across the nation at the Stanford conference, and still managed to win the Best Delegation award. Additionally, students from Gunn received Best Delegate awards from their respective committees at the Stanford conference, some of whom include juniors Michelle Klets and Ben Lee, sophomore Isha Gupta and senior Esther Kozakevich. Many more student delegates from Gunn captured other prizes and research awards.
Narayan talked to other leaders from the Santa Clara Valley MUN conference to find a way to organize the Gunn conference. “I thought that it would be really interesting and fun,” Narayan said. “The members were definitely enthusiastic about it.” According to Narayan and Undersecretary General of Fundraising senior Julian Moran, hosting the Gunn conference was important for giving students a greater opportunity. Moran said that the conference allowed high school students to expose themselves to attending an event usually meant for college students.
In addition, the leaders felt that the conference allowed Gunn MUN to become more popular. “Once you start to put your name out and your conference gets a good [reputation] then you can build it more and more each year,” Narayan said. “Santa Clara Valley [High School] doubled from 350 to 700 students only over the last five or six years; it definitely shows how rapidly our conferences are able to grow.”
The two leaders felt that the big issue with MUN over the years has been accessibility. Moran felt that members didn’t attend many conferences in the past years specifically because of the cost, but believes that the Gunn conference opened up more ways to allow more members to attend. “Having a sustainable revenue from the conference opens up the possibility of lowering the cost for students: in turn making MUN more accessible.” Moran said. “The best thing for Gunn MUN is to make it more accessible because there’s certainly lots of talent at this school.”