The Cornerstones of My MUN Journey by Melisa Ceylin GÖNEN
I remember like it was yesterday when I joined my first MUN conference. Actually, before MUN, I went to a MUN-like conference which was EYF’16. I believe that it was the starter of this incredible journey. Because after it my English teacher told me about MUN and suggested me to participate in it and I thought to myself my not? My first MUN was IKUMUN’17. I was so excited, that I had no idea on what to do. Since I lacked from public speaking I didn’t raise my placard at all until the chair board sent me a message paper stating that I needed to speak. It was roughly 15-20 seconds but it felt like a lifetime for me. The second I finished I felt my heart is beating so fast and to be honest I got very nervous. This conference means a lot to me because I got a chance to meet new people, make new friends and strengthen the relationships I previously had. After the conference ended I knew exactly how I wanted to spend my time. I and my friends immediately started researching the nearest conference that we could attend to.
My second MUN conference, KALMUN’17, was a game changer for me. It was one of the best conferences I’ve ever attended to. Its memories I’ve shared with friends are priceless. We had our own little delegation of individual delegates. But the remarkable people that I met there are a big part of my life. Now, whenever I go to Kadıköy I always look forward to seeing someone! When I first went to KALMUN’17 I was excited because from previous experience I studied the procedure and knew enough to participate completely. However, I was in for a surprise when I learned that it was a different procedure. That was the first time I learned that MUN had two types of procedures; THIMUN and HARVARDMUN. But I believe that I learned it very quickly and it was still marvellous. The second shock I had was when I learned that I was an ambassador. I didn’t even know how to be a delegate, let along be an ambassador. The one thing I learned was that I needed to present an opening speech at the opening ceremony. Maybe for others, this is an easy task, for me, it was a challenge. Talking in front of a lot of people gave me a great scare. I practised speaking slower, clearer and calmer weeks before the conference.
When they finally announced my country to take the floor I already felt a feeling I can’t even begin to explain. When I finally finished I asked my friends on how I did and they said you did great. It was very encouraging for me. Most of the friends I have now, I met there. Each and every one of them is very special to me. Some of them have always been by my side in my proudest and happiest moments.
My first special committee was at HPALMUN’18 which was Game of Thrones! As a huge fangirl and nerd, the minute I heard about it I was very excited. I got to be Tyrion Lannister for four days which was an honour and extremely awesome! It was probably one of the best committees I had ever been to and is also one that I surely will never forget. It was the first time I actually wasn’t stressed and talked with having no difficulty. I participated in HISTANBUL with the advice of a friend and I have zero regrets! I had cramps in my stomach from laughing so much. Our committee always had some kind of action going which left us stunned!
In the same year, our school participated in RCIMUN’18 and I was one of the fortunate students who got the chance to take part in the delegation. It meant a lot to me because when I looked back to all the previous conferences I went to, the friends I made and everything I accomplished in that time, I was very proud and happy for myself. It was a turning point in my life for the better. And now before I go on, I would like to mention a few people whom I hold dear and are very precious to me. Selin and Batuhan, being my classmates since the 9th grade, and also the two people who have been with me since my first MUN conference. Starting this path together helped us grow in ways we never knew we could. Memories I made with these two are worth remembering (even the most cringe ones). Together we even encouraged other classmates and went to conferences as a huge group which was extremely fun!
Deren, was the first friend I made in MUN. We were in the same committee in KALMUN’17 and introduced ourselves in the last day which was a total bummer but still, we kept in touch and grew very close in IIMUN’18 and our friendship has been strong ever since then. Caba is one of my closest friends in and out of MUN. Although we were in the same school we had no idea of each other’s existence. After IKUMUN’17 we met and established a bond that is still continuing.
Deniz and Defne were both in KALMUN’17 (in fact I was in the same committee with Defne) but that isn’t the conference that we met! I became friends with Deniz a week before IIMUN’18, at a concert and then at the conference we were like friends who knew each other for a very long time. Defne and I were again the same committees, in RCIMUN’18.In the first coffee break when everyone was introducing themselves and getting to know each other we just looked at each other for a minute and then that famous MUN quote “You look so familiar, have I seen you in another conference?”Then we start counting the conferences we’ve gone to and found the connection! I met Emir the same way I met Deniz (at a concert) but didn’t really get a chance to keep in touch after that until we were in the same committee in RCIMUN’18. Then in KALMUN ’18 when me, Defne, Emir and Selin hung out together for five days we built a friendship and had a stronger relationship then we did before. There are so many people that have made my life a little better and I’m sorry I can’t write about all the amazing memories we had together.
I got most of my current environment thanks to MUN. They helped me improve myself in many ways. The information I learn in 3 to 5 days, the feelings that occur at that time, the memories that make me joyful and sad when I think about them mean more than anything to me.MUN is and will always be a huge part of my life. I know that in the future when I look back I will have tears in my eyes but an enormous smile on my face…
Melisa Ceylin Gönen
The Writer of MUNTurkey.com