Special Interview with NAMUN’18
1.MUNTurkey.com: Hello NAMUN 2018 Team! It is our utmost pleasure to serve NAMUN’18 as Media Sponsor! This year it is going to be the 7th edition of NAMUN! We all want to know better the strong team behind this spectacular organization. Could you please introduce the academic and organization teams of NAMUN’18?
Ilayda Korkmaz, Secretary General: The academic team is composed of 10th and 11th grade IB students from our school. They are all MUNers with experience and achievements in their past conferences. The secretariat includes the Secretary-General and the Deputy Secretary-General. I, İlayda Korkmaz, am the Secretary-General, and Bora Göbekli is our Deputy Secretary General. We have 8 academic assistants all chosen in accordance with their academic abilities. Alphabetically they are Ada Sayal, Cemrenur Erdal, Dilara Naz Çiçekci, Meltem Dönmez, Mete Kerem Çalışkan, Metehan İpek, Özgür Alkın Karaçam, and Sena Gül Hazır. Cemrenur Erdal has written the study guide of UNCTAD, Meltem Dönmez the study guide of NATO, Mete Kerem Çalışkan the study guide of the Roman Senate, Metehan İpek the study guide of UNWHO, Özgür Alkın Karaçam the study guide of UNCOPUOS, and Sena Gül Hazır the study guide of ECOFIN; Ada Sayal and Dilara Naz Çiçekci are writing the study guide of UNHRC which has recently been added due to high demand. They are an integral part of the academic mechanism of our conference. In addition to his work as an academic assistant, Metehan İpek is also our Head Crisis and will perform incapacity of this duty during the conference.
Beliz Belgin, Director General: As for the organization team, we have a Public Relations team composed of 6 people. The Head of our Public Relations Department is Venüs Baysal. I’ve known Venüs for 3 years now and we started going to MUNs together, and I think she was tailor-made for this position. The Deputy-head of Public Relations is Güneş Ekmekçi and we have 4 associates; Lal Cebeci, Duru Hızarcıoğlu, Zeynep Şenoğlu, and Bilge Şenol. This team is the best Public Relations Team I could’ve wished for. The Business Department is composed of 4 people. The head of our Business Department is Damla Baran, we’ve been friends for 5 years and I couldn’t wish for a better person to work with, she is the best when it comes to management, and soothing my nerves when I’m having a mental breakdown over NAMUN issues. Her associates are Doruk Aygün, Berk İmre, and Yaşar Arslan. The Press team is composed of 3 people. The Head of Press is İdil Ulu, she is the most talented person I know when it comes to photography and design in general. Since we’ve been friends for a very long time, I can trust her and ask her for help no matter what. Her associates are Elif Naz Erdem and Yiğit Sarı. The logistics team is a core team of 2 people. The Head of logistics Emre Polat is the most patient person I’ve ever known in my life and I couldn’t have asked for someone better than him for this position. Our head of IT, Mehmet Ali (Brusk) Bozyel has just joined our team but he is doing an amazing job and keeping up very well. Our head of Internal Affairs, Ozan Yaranlı is helping everyone on organizational matters, he is a lifesaver. The Head of Administrative Staff, Deniz Zeynep Bilen is the best when it comes to multitasking so she can help anyone in the team with anything at any time. And last but most definitely not least our Deputy Director General Bora Saygaç, even though he is a senior doing the IB Diploma Programme and has a very busy schedule, he accepted my offer to be the Deputy Director General of NAMUN 2018 and I know for sure that I can trust him with anything. Our organization team consists of the 10th, 11th and 12th graders of Nesibe Aydin Schools.
2. MUNTurkey.com: This year it is going to be the 7th edition of NAMUN and it is one of the most essential MUN conferences in Turkey. Having lots of experience must definitely make an immense difference. Could you please tell us more about the previous editions of NAMUN? And what kind of things are waiting for the participants of NAMUN’18?
IK: First of all thank you! We, as a team, appreciate your and our attendees’ recognition of our efforts. NAMUN has always had a strong academic side due to the diligently chosen members of the team who give this conference their best efforts, and the care taken when selecting the committees and their agendas to ensure their originality and importance. Last year I, our Deputy Secretary-General, and one of our Under Secretary Generals had the opportunity to take part in the process as academic assistants and got to experience the magic. We worked very hard, as did all-academic teams that preceded us, and strived to produce a conference of high academic quality, I like to think that we achieved this goal. This year, deriving from our past experiences, we aspire not to break the tradition of academic excellence and improve it. NAMUN’18 will be our first conference with 7 committees, as opposed to 6 of the previous editions of NAMUN, and has the largest academic team of ours to date. Participants can expect intelligent debate on decisive issues that plague our global community; inter-committee cooperation which will increase the realism of the experience; as well as many crises. Even one of the agendas of UNWHO will come as a crisis which will not be disclosed until its emergence. We endeavour to surpass what is considered to be the norm for most MUN conferences and provide our participants with an extraordinary experience.
BB: I was introduced to the MUN community in 2016 with NAMUN and it was one of the most amazing conferences I’ve ever been to. I think the biggest impact on me was made by the Secretary-General of NAMUN 2016, Işık Vera Şenel, she thought me everything I know about MUN today and she motivated me to keep doing MUN no matter what. We also had learned a lot of from NAMUN 2017. I was both the Head of Administrative Staff and the Head of Crisis, working with both the academic and the organization team at the same time. This enabled me to understand how things work and how everything should be in a successful MUN conference from different perspectives which also helped my progress a lot. The fact that NAMUN is a student-oriented conference and that we learn from each other’s mistakes and make everything a little better step by step every year is what makes NAMUN great. This year, since we’ve gained even more experience as both the organization and the academic team, we are fully confident, have big hopes and high expectations for NAMUN2018, and will try our best to satisfy our participants as much as we can.
3.MUNTurkey.com: NAMUN’18 will be held at Nesibe Aydın Okulları in Gölbaşı, Ankara. Could you please give us more information about the venue and attractions around the venue?
BB: Not only our campus, but we will have the first day of the conference at Ankara Plaza Hotel. It is located in Bestekar Street near Tunali Hilmi, so there are lots of activities to engage in at all times and many cafés, restaurants, parks, pubs and stores. As for our school campus, it is very big and very suitable for an MUN conference to take place. We will have shuttles taking our participants to the venue in the morning and taking them from the venue to Ankara Plaza Hotel, which is the place our participants from out of town will be accommodating at, in the evenings. As for our participants living in Ankara, the hotel is located in a very central spot so public transportation is available at all times.
4. MUNTurkey.com: We know that you have created new committees that have never been organized in Turkey. Could you please briefly explain us the academic side of the conference? What committees do you have and what are the newest and the original ones?
IK: As the secretariat, we have strived to choose the best committees with the most meaningful agendas for our conference and we direct the academic team. NAMUN strives to have a strong and original academic side. This year we have 7 committees which include the Roman Senate, ECOFIN, NATO, UNCOPUOS, UNCTAD, UNWHO, and UNHRC. I would say that it is rare to see the Roman Senate, UNCOPUOS, and UNCTAD in MUN conferences, especially in Turkey. Roman Senate will focus on the Catiline Conspiracy: truly a tumultuous and fascinating time in the history of Rome; UNCOPUOS will have 2 agendas both which are not discussed sufficiently by MUNers, they will be concerned with land ownership and asteroid mining in outer space as well as armament of space; UNCTAD will host discussions on the rights and regulations to be applied to Artificial Intelligence. Although they are viewed as more conventional committees, ECOFIN, UNWHO, and NATO will also have unconventional aspects, namely how the resolution of UNWHO’s first agenda, which is the secondary health effects of natural disasters, will be sent to ECOFIN to be taken into consideration when they discuss their second agenda: disaster relief. UNWHO will also receive a crisis as their second agenda. I cannot tell what it will be to avoid it being spoiled, but trust me when I say that it will be a very interesting one. NATO will be an open agenda committee, and this will ensure that the participants will get to pick from a diverse list of agendas and discuss something that matters to them. This is expected to eliminate dissatisfaction with the topic that is discussed in the committee which is, frankly and unfortunately, a problem that MUNers sometimes have to face. Due to high demand, we have added a 7th committee: UNHRC. It will focus on women’s rights violations. More specifically on the topics of sexual and reproductive rights of women (with an emphasis on female genital mutilation and child marriages), and of another which will be announced soon.
5. MUNTurkey.com: There are a lot of MUN conferences around the world recently. To be honest, MUNers have started to choose the MUN conferences they want to attend and everybody looks for a good reason. So, why should people attend NAMUN’18?
IK: In my opinion, the main reason to attend NAMUN’18 is its academic strength. Due to our wide range of committees and their aforementioned qualities, we offer many opportunities for valuable experiences that will help our participants in their future MUN careers and beyond. All of the academic content has been carefully cultivated and has passed many controls by our experienced team. We meticulously pored over many global issues and selected the agendas which will provoke the most stimulating, and enjoyable debate on topics worth discussing. We strive for perfection of all of our academic materials and hope that all participants will thoroughly enjoy them all.
BB: NAMUN is one of the most essential conferences in Ankara and Turkey. I think since we have learned the basics of MUN from the people who’ve created NAMUN and carried it to the top, we, as both the organization and the academic team, are very committed. We are very confident in terms of MUN procedure and organization process, we try to make everything perfect, even the small things like badges, folders, pens, everything is designed to satisfy our participants and stand out in general. I don’t think anyone one would regret attending NAMUN. We provide a memorable experience in all aspects.
6.MUNTurkey.com: Can first-timers attend NAMUN’18 or you only accept advanced-level and experienced delegates? And can university students attend NAMUN’18 as well?
IK: When we chose our committees for NAMUN’18, we were careful to select committees suitable for a large variety of delegates with different levels of experience, therefore it is safe to say that we have something for everyone ranging from beginners to MUN veterans; consequently everyone is welcome to apply and attend NAMUN regardless of their experience. We expect to have committees such as ECOFIN & Roman Senate to be composed of experienced university students since they require expertise in economy and law, while UNWHO and UNHRC will in all likelihood have a majority of first timers and other delegates with little experience.
7.MUNTurkey.com: We know that the IB programme has become very popular in Turkey. Can the delegates of NAMUn’18 use the certificate of NAMUN’18 in their CAS activities or lessons?
IK: MUN is one of the most suitable extracurricular activities for IB students. In fact, most members of our teams, including the entirety of our academic team, are IB students. Attending conferences in different positions is a wonderful way to log in CAS hours, so yes all attendees of NAMUN will be able to use their certificates for CAS.
BB: MUN is a lifesaver for me when it comes to CAS. Organizing NAMUN is the biggest CAS project I have. I think IB students should all be attending MUNs in general because it is a CAS activity and it helps develop your English language skills while teaching you a lot about being diplomatic, politically correct and how formal language should be used which is going to be very useful in the future when you have a career, or for when you are doing interviews for universities and jobs. It is an activity that helps you gain a whole new perspective on our world’s issues, which is one of the IB’s main goals as well.
8.MUNTurkey.com: Could you please tell us more about the organization and logistics of the conference? What kind of social events are you planning? Will there be any trips for advisors? Which hotel will the participants be staying at during the conference?
BB: Our participants will be staying at Ankara Plaza Hotel in Bestekar, I think the location of the hotel is great since it is very close to some great restaurants, clubs and also the transportation will be very easy for our participants as I have stated before. We are planning a social event for Saturday night and the details for it will be announced very soon. We provide airport shuttle services on the first day of the conference at 9.30am and shuttles for the 2nd and 3rd days to our school campus and from our school campus.
9. MUNTurkey.com: As you know, we have started a new project named MUNFashion! We are curious about the dress code. Could you please briefly inform us about the dress code of the conference? Furthermore, what else can you say about the fashion of MUN?
IK: NAMUN will only permit western business attire at the conference. A rule of thumb to make sure that one stay within the boundaries of the dress code is to ask oneself if one would wear this to a job interview and only wear it if one gives an affirmative response to that question. That being said, it is a great idea to express oneself with splashes or lack of colour, statement pieces, and creative combinations of clothing items. I personally like to create my outfits out of classic and classy pieces. One can never go wrong with a well-fitting pantsuit or an elegant dress when they are used together with dainty accessories. My best advice would be not to wear high heels to the first day of the conference, because that is the day when most lobbying is done and everyone inevitable stands up for a long time during the registration process; but this advice, of course, doesn’t apply to people who really are equally comfortable in heels and in flat shoes. It could be a good idea to carry around flats when one wears heels, just in case. I also like to carry a tote bag with me which can hold everything that I may need during the conference.
BB: We see the dress code as a very important part of MUN and are actually really strict about it this year. Our participants have to wear Western business attire, we won’t be allowing jeans, sneakers, t-shirts, sweatshirts, etc. The fashion of MUN is a great project giving direction to an essential part of these conferences’. I believe MUN fashion has become a little less formal compared to when I first started doing MUNs, but that does not change the crucial role it plays since it is how you present yourself to other delegates and participants.
10. MUNTurkey.com: Thank you very much for this great interview. We are sure you would like to add more about yourself or MUN world. And, last but not least, what can you tell us about MUNTurkey.com? Do you think MUNTurkey.com contributes to the development of MUN conferences and students’ self-improvement?
IK: I have always been interested in debate and in global issues, and MUN for me is the one place where I get to surround myself with others like me. Seeing others’ efforts to produce solutions for such significant problems truly gives me hope for the future. In my opinion, MUNTurkey.com has become a significant part of the MUN community in Turkey. It forms the backbone of the MUN advertisement business and I always find interesting conferences when I visit the website. The articles published there is also a terrific tool to be used when it comes to preparation for a conference and to self-improvement of delegates. The jokes that you occasionally post on your Instagram page are also always good for a laugh. Thank you for this interview.
BB: I think MUNTurkey is a wonderful platform because it helps people who all love doing MUN reach out to each other. Everyone should check it out before attending a conference since there are some very useful tips from studying a study guide to what you should wear at conferences. I think it has a very big impact on conferences since it is one of the biggest MUN platforms in Turkey. We thank MUNTurkey for helping us reach out to a bigger audience and always supporting us throughout the preparation stages of NAMUN 2018. You can check out our website www.namun18.com for further information and reach the contact information of all of our team members. We are looking forward to having you join the world’s heartbeat with us on December 14-15-16th in Ankara!
As MUNTurkey.com PR Team, we thank all NAMUN’18 Team for making this amazing interview possible! We invite all MUNers to the 7th edition of NAMUN in Ankara!
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