Article by: Rohan Lal Tulsiani
For the first time, the International School of Manila has sent a group of delegates for THIMUN Singapore, an annual Model United Nations conference that was established in 2004 as a sister conference to THIMUN Europe, which ISM used to send delegates to. International School Manila, which was allocated the countries of Botswana, Cambodia and Switzerland, joined an additional seventy-three schools representing over one hundred and sixty countries, making this conference one of the biggest MUN conferences in all of Asia.
One of the delegates who took part in the THIMUN conference, John Hadaway, commented on his experiences, saying that it was a “great experience for everyone who attended” claiming that despite its size, THIMUN “was home to some very good debate”. This allowed for him and the delegation as a whole to “debate and interact with people from all around the world” which will allow for him to “gain the confidence that is needed to be successful in future conferences – local or international”.
In addition, the delegates of THIMUN also had the opportunity to “immerse themselves in Singaporean culture”. This included trips to Universal Studios Singapore, which was brought to Singapore during the early colonial times, and an ancient Malay temple known as “Marina Bay Sands”. John claims that these were vital to the learning experience, as they were “allowed to explore a city that they would otherwise be unable to explore”, without taking one of fourteen daily flights from Manila to Singapore.
John mentioned as this “cultural immersion” as one of the key aspects that made THIMUN Singapore more enjoyable than the other MUN conferences he has been to in the past, namely the Locals and BEIMUN conference. John also referenced the “wide array of schools attending” was another aspect that pushed this conference over the top, claiming that meeting people outside of the six IASAS schools, from countries as far as Canada and Qatar, has helped him “foster the globalised mind-sets that going to a school like ISM instils”.
John further said that MUN, unlike “competitive events”, really “keys in on collaboration – something that, in [his] opinion, is one of the most important aspects of any endeavor”, which is why he “encourages anyone who is even marginally interested in current events or international relations to challenge themselves intellectually by joining MUN and trying to get selected on one of these conferences”.