By Staphany Hou

On Saturday, October 13, over 800 delegates from 15 middle and high schools attended the Cerritos Novice MUN Conference, held at Cerritos High School. For many delegates, this was their first or second experience with MUN, and the air was filled with nervousness and excitement.

The day began with a short Opening Ceremony, followed by the announcement of all 20 committees. The 20 committees covered a wide range of topics and included every major committee found in the United Nations, including General Assemblies and Economic and Social Committees. About 40 delegates and two dedicated Cerritos MUN chairs were in each committee. Following the first session of committee, the delegates broke for lunch, and many returned early to continue working on resolutions with their groups.

Because this was a novice conference, Cerritos adopted a Live Tally System, so delegates and their advisors could check the number of speeches, comments, and caucus points that had been made. This allowed advisors to see if delegates were actively participating in the committee and ensured that mistakes in the tally sheets could quickly be resolved. Most importantly, this helped the chairs of every committee make sure that every delegate was given an equal chance at making speeches and comments.

Overall, the conference had a strong focus on learning about the process of Model UN, and the day ended successfully with an Awards Ceremony. Rather than the standard Commendation, Outstanding, and Best Delegate awards, Cerritos opted to present Awards of Excellence to qualified delegates to reduce the focus on awards. Delegates and advisors were still able to see how they did in the context of their committee by looking at the point sheets, posted online. By 6pm, both the chairs and the delegates had all returned home from a successful day of speeches, debates, and resolutions.