During the weekend of March 9-11, 2001, eleven students of Developing Virtue Girls School attended the 49th Berkeley Model United Nations (BMUN) Conference. This was the second time a DVGS student team participated in this conference. The conference took place at the campus of University of California, Berkeley, and was organized by the Berkeley students. Three DVGS teachers accompanied the team, and local lay disciples of the Venerable Master graciously housed the students over the conference weekend.
The Berkeley Model United Nations is a simulation of a formal United Nations session where high school student teams from all over California represent one or more countries. This year the DVGS team represented Finland and Iceland. During the conference the student delegates discussed current issues such as international peace and security, disarmament, poverty eradication, and technological change. They also drafted resolutions that outlined possible solutions to these problems. In the process the delegates learned about international diplomacy and the arts of cooperation, compromise, and peaceful resolution of conflicts. All participants found the BMUN conference a challenging but enriching educational experience.
Excerpts from the students' comments after the conference:
... The time was managed well... I learned something from BMUN. —Peggy Tsai, 12th grade
... This year I started to understand and follow what was going on. A lot of people in there were very serious about this stuff... —Yu-han Kao, 11th grade
... It has changed the way I see several things and people as well... —Amy Bernacki, 10th grade
... You could really learn a lot from it: the issues at hand, and how delegates representing different nations compromised to come up with resolutions in a matter of a few hours. —Cintya Kandahsari, 10th grade
... I was amazed at how sophisticated and intelligent their resolutions, statements, and comments were. At one point I couldn't really believe they were high school students. I learned to caucus, interact in a businesslike way, make resolutions and vote the UN way... —Huei Ong, 9th grade
... We learned how to attend a formal meeting, communicate, interact with other delegates, and compromise on various solutions... —Shirley Wu, 9th grade