My name is Alexa Hernandez, and I am a third-year studying Political Science and International Affairs with a certificate in Applied Politics at the University of Georgia. Since my first semester here at UGA, I was lucky to apply and be accepted to the Model United Nations team! I applied to this team on a whim, but quickly have found my family on campus that fits under the umbrella of my majors and the School of Public and International Affairs. I had participated in my high school’s Model United Nations team, but I quickly learned that the things that I knew about the high school version of the club was not at all what it is like in college. The high school Model United Nations is most like the typical United Nations proceedings, where each person represents a country and debates about a certain topic. While there is a subsection of this type of committee on the collegiate circuit, the most prevalent type of committee is called a Crisis committee. It has the same general idea of the General Assembly style, but Crisis is where you portray a character and make up a bunch of crazy plots in order to fix (or wreck) a problem or situation; we represent a country or character, and debate a modern political, historical, or story-based topic.
During my second year on the team, I was representing a politician named Eamonn during the Irish Rebellion of 1916 called Easter Rising. I knew nothing about Irish history prior to this competition, but I had such a blast at Florida State competing against other college students who were in the same boat as me. Typically, when we go to competitions, there are teams from all across the country! I have made friends that go to Emory, University of Florida, and even Columbia in New York City! As a team, we travel to two to three conferences during the year: one in the fall and one in the spring. For the spring, we love to take our team and travel to new places! In the past, we have traveled to New York City, Chicago, Tallahassee, and even stayed local and competed in Atlanta at Emory! We are all really sad that we can’t travel to compete this year, but all of the conferences we usually go to are being really accommodating and doing everything online. Additionally, in the same boat as going to competitions, the UGA Model United Nations team hosts our own conference for high school students! During our yearly high school conference, UGAMUNC, we had a committee last year that was set in the world of Harry Potter. It was such a fun experience, because students from all across the state of Georgia come to the University for a weekend and get to experience our campus and what Model United Nations is like! We always joke with our members and the students that our conference is a great way to recruit students to the University and to SPIA, but we also get to recruit for Model United Nations. This club does a lot for the Athens community, and I am so glad to call myself a member!