Students attend UT annual CTMUN conference


Julia Bychowski

Students watch the mayor deliver his speech. CTMUN experienced the largest amounts of delegates to date during their 2022 conference.

Julia Bychowski, Editor

On Nov. 4, the Model United Nations program participants attended UT’s annual Central Texas MUN (CTMUN) conference. Throughout the weekend, students attacked issues ranging from preserving endangered languages and dialects, to balancing power within ancient Rome and Egypt. 

“The people that you’re meeting here today are brand new people that are similarly interested in the skills of debate and research,” mayor of Austin, Steve Adler, said. “There are people that are joining you in a celebration of democracy, a celebration of having impacted and changing the world around you.”

During CTMUN’s opening ceremony, the mayor came to deliver a brief speech highlighting the importance of the youth’s participation in global change. Students then dispersed to their various committee rooms located around the UT campus. 

“So, basically, I found myself accidentally working with a mafia,” sophomore and treasurer, Noya Vainbrand, said. “Now, I’m besties with the mafia.”

Model United Nations [more commonly known as Model UN] is essentially a simulation in which students roleplay as delegates from certain countries, or sometimes historical figures or made up characters. 

“CTMUN is always really exciting every single year because it’s such a big conference with so many like minded individuals,” junior and vice president, Arianna Brar, said. “And, it’s a really great place to practice debate speech.”

Not only did CTMUN, as a whole, experience the largest number of delegates to date, but the Vandegrift delegation also had the most participants so far with 19 students signed up for the conference.

 “This year, they’ve expanded on the novice committees, and they have more than they’ve ever had,” junior and MUN communications director, Josh Kincheloe, said. “So, [there are] lots of opportunities for different skill levels.”

With 29 different committees offered to delegates, CTMUN provided a wide variety of topics and skill levels. For Vandegrift’s delegation, novice members participated in both on-level committees and a novice-level committee that was focused around a year at the fictional Hogwarts from Harry Potter. 

“It’s been a good conference, and we’re really excited to see the future of this club and see how our performance ends up here at CTMUN,” Kincheloe said. “And, we think this is going to be probably our best year on record.”

By the end of the conference on Nov. 6, the Vandegrift delegation brought in two awards: outstanding delegate for junior Vishnu Banda and honorable mention for sophomore Veertana Vemuri.

“It’s been really fun and very exhausting,” Vainbrand said, “because I have to spy on a bunch of people – and I’m really poor.”