University students propose solutions to global problems in the MiMUN-UCJC Model United Nations

Young university students from 17 Spanish and international universities met this week for the fourth  MiMUN-UCJC, Madrid International Model United Nations, which began today at the University Camilo José Cela Almagro building and which will conclude at the Madrid Assembly on Friday 26 October. The Model United Nations is sponsored by Banco Santander through Santander Universities and Catergest, and with the collaboration of UNICEF.

This educational-cultural project, with the authorisation and support of the United Nations, is an excellent opportunity for young people to lead this initiative and achieve agreements on and solutions to the most relevant issues on the international agenda. Using different debating and negotiating skills and techniques, students simulate the work of the representatives of the member states that make up some of the bodies in the UN system.

At the opening ceremony, the President of SEK Education Group, Nieves Segovia, participated today; the Vice-Rector of UCJC, Sonsoles Escribano; and the General Secretary of MiMUN-UCJC, Borja Pampillón. Nieves Segovia highlighted the need to encourage critical thinking in society in general and in young people in particular, “a great value that calls for the resistance of civil society”.

On the other hand, Sonsoles Escribano highlighted the pride of belonging to University Camilo José Cela, an area of work and effort, which inspired by the writer himself, gives prominence to the written word to help “students to express themselves in a spirit of nonconformism”.

Taking part in the closing ceremony were, the Chair of the Madrid Assembly, Paloma Adrados; the Rector of UCJC, Samuel Martín-Barbero; the General Secretary of MiMUN, Borja Pampillón; the President of Foundation UCJC, Ignacio Sell and Emilia Parejo of Santander Universidades.

Paloma Adrados, Chair of the Madrid Assembly, congratulated the SEK Group and University Camilo José Cela for their educational work and for promoting initiatives such as MiMUN-UCJC, where debate is an exercise in listening and critical thinking. “Every year I am surprised by the conclusions that come out of MiMUN-UCJC”, she said.

Samuel Martín-Barbero highlighted in his speech the importance of human development and solidarity of each of the students participating in MiMUN-UCJC, beyond the diplomatic learning and cognitive skills developed at the Model. “We, at UCJC and through MiMUN in this case, are not part of the Spanish university system to discipline university students with a single recipe to adequately prepare them for the present, rather our contribution entails educating citizens freely so that they are able to be their best in the future, it being both our moral duty and our vocational conviction”.

The universities represented in this 4th MiMUN-UCJC were the Universidad CEU San Pablo, Colegio Universitario de Estudios Financieros-CUNEF, Universidad de Deusto, International Black Sea University (Georgia), University of Ghana, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Universidad Complutense, Universidad de Granada, Universidad Loyola Andalucía, Universidad de Salamanca, Instituto Universitario Superior Juana Manso, Universidad Francisco de Vitoria, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Universidad Pablo Olavide, Universidad País Vasco and Universidad Rey Juan Carlos.

Characteristics of the MUN Models

MUN projects aim to foment a critical attitude and encourage student participation in the acquisition of the principles, values and mechanisms necessary for the peaceful resolution of conflicts. They also contribute to understanding the current international situation.

MiMUN-UCJC (Madrid International Model United Nations) is the Model United Nations organised by Camilo José University, which took place for the first time in October 2015.

The project is directed by a group of students and teachers with a rich experience in Model United Nations. UCJC can count on the previous experience of SEK Educational Group, which has run Model United Nations at its schools for the past ten years.

Since 2007, SEK Education Group has organised SEKMUN Model United Nations at its schools. They are for Year 4 ESO (Mandatory Secondary Education) students and for Year 1 Baccalaureate students belonging to SEK schools and other invited international schools. Over the course of the model, students reflect and work on current affairs and international politics within the framework of the United Nations, using Spanish and English as their working languages.

The rules of procedure of MiMUN-UCJC have been drawn up along the lines of those of WORLDMUN, an organisation that originated in the University of Harvard, and to which other prestigious universities, such as Yale, Oxford, La Sorbonne et alia also belong.

Banco Santander, which has been supporting this and other University Camilo José Cela academic initiatives for years, is the world’s leading private investor in education support (Varkey Report / UNESCO-Fortune 500) and through Santander Universidades, has over 1,100 collaboration agreements with universities and institutions in 21 countries. More information at www.becas-santander.com

More information about the United Nations Model MiMUN-UCJC

READ THE FULL SPEECH BY SAMUEL MARTÍN-BARBERO

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