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During this February half term, 11 Marling students and Sixth formers were offered the opportunity to travel to London and take part in a Model UN competition at Westminster School. For those who don’t know, a Model UN competition entails delegates from different schools congregating in one place and debating on global issues, such as corruption or provision of clean water. The unique thing that makes Model UN events stand out from other debating events is the requirement for delegates to personally represent a nation and engage in the debate taking a stance based the opinions of that country. As you can imagine, this can lead to some amusing, if controversial situations, with Saudi Arabia taking a leading view on gender equality at the Model UN in London. This year 3 teams of delegates went from Marling, representing Thailand, Iran and Yemen. All delegates thoroughly enjoyed stepping into their given countries’ shoes, taking leading roles in all debates and leaving a solid impact on the proceedings at Westminster. The event itself was very well organised, with a small team of seven students creating a full experience highly reminiscent of the actual UN, which furthered the event for all involved. Additionally, participants were treated to talks from lawyers and ministers, including an inspiring speech from the Baroness Anelay, who is the Minister of State for the UK and our actual representative to the UN. After the four day trip, one year 11 commented “It was the best debating competition I've been to” and another mentioned “In my opinion I loved the atmosphere and how friendly everyone was, I was made to feel welcome and I learnt a lot”, a sentiment echoed by other members of his team.


While there, Marling students and the Sixth Formers performed to an excellent standard, especially considering many of our representatives had near to no prior experience debating. This resulted in commendations for students from the Thailand and Iran teams, and an award for best delegation for the Sixth Formers representing Iran. This is a great achievement, and so thanks must be extended towards all delegates for participating, and special thanks towards Jamie Arthur in the Sixth Form and Mrs Southwell for planning and organising the trip. The event is expected to happen again next year, and after the resounding success of this year, we wholeheartedly recommend any students above year 9 to sign up and form delegations to go next year. 
Jasper Newport, 11F



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