The 2011 Montessori Model United Nation got off to a bang Wednesday night when nearly 850 students from all across the globe gathered together in the Brooklyn Marriott Ballroom for the opening ceremony. The ceremony began with a parade of flags: one by one all of the nations represented at MMUN came into the ballroom, flags held high. The excitement was palpable as the crowd applauded and music played.
MMUN founder Judith Cunningham spoke to the unique opportunity the students had to inspire peace and understanding at such an early age. She also commended the students for being unique themselves — deciding on their own to make a commitment, study the UN protocol and the positional stances of their representative countries, and make the journey to NYC for the MMUN conference. Cunningham also introduced the schools who had come from around the globe: schools from Sweden, China, Ghana, Mexico, Canada, Hawaii and across the continental United States. The school from Japan got a resounding round of applause after Cunningham noted that they had felt aftershock earthquakes on the way to the airport.
Prior to the opening ceremony, our MSR students explored Brooklyn and Manhattan. They set off into a drizzly day, exhausted from the early flight and travel, but excited to be in such a vibrant city. The Middle School students made their way into Manhattan by subway and met with an actual UN representative at the UN’s Mexican PermanentMission. A young woman named Isabella spoke the the Middle School students about how she got involved early with Model UN programs and went on to work for the Mexican government in the United Nations General Assembly. Our Middle School students (who are representing Mexico at the MMUN) were able to ask questions about Mexico’s stance on various international relations.
Stay tuned for more information as the conference unfolds.
~ Reposted from the MMUN blog by Jay Cullis