Gables Model UN’s Virtual Victories


Natalie Abrahantes

The Cavalier MUN team brought home various awards for their achievements during their first competition of the 2020-2021 school year.

Isabel Donner, Staff Writer

The Coral Gables Senior High Model United Nations team has kicked off their competitions with their first event of the season hosted by Vanderbilt University. This year, the three-day conference had to take place virtually. Despite having technical issues which created complications, the experience ended with the Gables team taking home several awards for its members’ performances.

The event lasted three days, starting on Friday, Nov. 13, and concluding on Sunday, Nov. 15. Unfortunately, students could not travel to Vanderbilt University this year and instead had to attend the conference through a virtual platform known as Gatherly. Although they experienced frequent crashing and computer troubles, the Gables Model UN team made the most of a difficult situation by exhibiting award-winning performances. The platform was user-friendly, however, and did well in emulating the typical Model UN conference experience.

“The three days of VUMUN were in general an enjoyable experience. Ignoring the issues with technology, the virtual committee environment was almost analogous to the in-person environment and did not in the slightest impact my performance,” sophomore William Hudson said.

The Cavaliers were successful at the competition. With a team of eight competitors, the Gables Model UN team won four individual recognitions and one team award. Senior Mia Crabill was an Honorable Mention in her Greek Gods of Olympus division, sophomore Beckett Schuchts being an Honorable Mention in the Human Rights Council and senior Jerrick Wong named an Honorable Mention in his League of Legends category.

Senior Isabella Rodriguez won Best Delegate—which is equivalent to first place—in her event. Rodriguez also competed in the Social, Cultural and Humanitarian Committee, in which she debated ways to eliminate global poverty during the COVID-19 pandemic. As a whole, the Gables team received the award of Outstanding Small Delegation.

It was a good experience despite the technical issues. I like debating, and I was still able to debate, so it is a win in my book. Gables had a really solid Model UN team this year and I expect great things. 

— senior Isabella Rodriguez.

The competitions were divided into sessions that featured opposing schools’ teams competing against one another. The conference kicked things off on Friday with a three-hour-long session which consisted of debates. On Saturday, the committee was divided into three different sessions of presentations lasting between two and two and a half hours each. The weekend finished with a two-and-a-half-hour session on Sunday.

Gables team members underwent extensive training in order to prepare for their competitions. For a significant number of the members, this conference would be their first, meaning practice was crucial in order for new teammates to perform at the level of MUN standards. Five weeks prior to the event, veteran members took extra time, in addition to the Thursday general club meetings, to fully educate newer members on Model UN conferences. The team went over Model UN terms and what they might encounter at the competition.

The Cavalier Model UN team used this experience as an opportunity to learn about diplomacy and international relations. Exhibiting their debate skills, they pushed through technical difficulties and were able to secure multiple victories. The results of their next competition, hosted by the University of Florida, are looked forward to as these Cavaliers are confident that they will continue to perform well in their future MUN endeavors.