Opinion editorials, reviews and personal essays
By Jessica Wu
Hi there! I’m Jessica Wu, I’m a junior here at SASPD, and I had the utmost honor of serving as one of the Secretaries-General of SHASMUN VI. Over the weekend of November 10-12, the SASPD Model United Nations program hosted its sixth annual SHASMUN conference on the theme of the Slanted Mirror. But for me, along with the other six members of the SHASMUN VI secretariat, SHASMUN preparation began long before then, sometime around late April earlier in the year.
From the moment that we received an email offering congratulations for being selected as the secretariat, preparations for the conference commenced with vigor. It was my first time in the secretariat, and I had never fully realized the sheer number of tasks that needed to be completed and aspects of the conference that needed to be addressed. We discussed a theme, we discussed possible topics, and we discussed the selection of student officers. We sent emails to invite other schools, sent emails to reserve venues, and sent yet more emails to set up facilities for our event. We ordered food, we ordered special paper, and we spent countless hours afterschool printing, reprinting, and sorting badges, placards, and certificates.
Needless to say, after dealing with crisis after crisis by the time the actual conference rolled around, the secretariat was nowhere near confident or certain that it was going to be a success. There seemed to be countless loose ends, confusions, and just THINGS that were still out of control.
I wish I could say that as schools started to arrive at our campus and the opening ceremony began, the stress and pressure subsided. But that would be a lie. Every moment of the conference for me was spent in fear that something was going to go wrong and undermine all the effort and time we had spent in preparation.
My one reprieve was when I went around to sit in on some of the committees to observe debate. Seeing the passion of the speakers, the diplomacy of the delegates, and the competency of the chairs up close reminded me of why I had joined the MUN program back in the seventh grade, and why I continued to give so much to this program. Seeing real people in action reminded me that all of the stress and work that the secretariat had put in over the course of six months was ultimately worth it. SHASMUN VI was worth it.
I’ll need to take a breather for a few weeks, but after that I’m throwing myself back into the MUN game with as much enthusiasm and excitement as when I eat food!