Opened Doors

Opened Doors

My heart must have been pounding a million-miles-a-minute. I began to pace up and down my living room because today was the day. The day my seventeen classmates and I have been waiting and preparing all semester for. Today was Model United Nations -- a simulation of the United Nations efforts to reach diplomatic solutions to international issues. Thousands of students from all over the world poured into the nation's capital for this weekend long conference. I don't think any amount of preparation could prepare you for the tiresome, nonstop, exciting and amazing experience that model United Nations provides. I have to tell you that this was probably one of the best and most rewarding experiences of my life. From opening sessions of the conference, which took place on Capitol Hill, I was fortunate enough to do something most people will probably never get the opportunity to do -- maybe never knew existed. I used the underground tunnels of Capitol Hill as well as, stood on the Speaker's balcony and gazed across the National Mall. My experience in D.C. truly continues to get better and better; I'm so amazed at all of the things I've been fortunate enough to do while being in D.C. I'm honored to be a part of a program that has opened so many doors in my mind.


View from the Speaker's Balcony on Capitol Hill

 

 

Tunnels under Capitol Hill

 

My mind has been opened to a whole new world that I was not accustomed to. Literally, a whole new world. My weekend was spent with some of the most brilliant minds of our generation, at model United Nations D.C. I encountered individuals from Russia, China, France, India, Mexico, Africa, and so many more places around the world. From the beginning of this program, the other 17 Ford Global Scholars and I have been tirelessly preparing for Model United Nations. Each delegation is assigned a country and placed into different committees focused on issues such as maternity health, nuclear nonproliferation and the list goes on and on. You completely immerse yourself in the country that you are assigned to and begin to do research on the country's history, culture and viewpoints on these issues. By the end on the conference your name is irrelevant. You are identified as your country's name. I represented the Philippines and by the end of the conference I even caught myself referring to myself as the Philippines. It was such an amazing experience. And to top off such an amazing weekend, my delegation, The Washington Center won the Distinguished Delegation Award -- as first time delegates. Also, I must add, the resolution my wonderful team worked so tirelessly on in our committee passed. I'm so honored and so blessed to be in this position.

 

 

 


The Washington Model U.N. delegation

 

Before I never knew there was such a thing as Model UN. But now, all of the diplomatic, research skills and overall life lessons it's taught me intersect with my everyday life. I've learned through the preparation for this conference what it means to be a good leader and diplomat. I honestly have been fortunate enough to be placed in a program that doesn't necessarily align with my future career path. I don't necessarily want to pursue international development. But I have been inspired to engage in the conversation going on in the international community and step outside of the box of politics on the domestic front. I'm a firm believer that most things in life don't happen by accident. I was selected to be in this program for a greater purpose that is not completely clear to me yet, but I'm enjoying my experience and discussions of international affairs. Being a Ford Global Scholar has opened me up to a world of ideas. I feel so inspired by this program that I want to create a Model UN chapter at my school so other students can also benefit from the skills and opportunities provided by Model UN. But, by far the most valuable thing I gained is new friendships and mentors.

 

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