Hossam HMUN: Committees

Specialized Agencies

The Specialized Agencies (SA) is home to the most creative and imaginative committees of HMUN 2019. Traditionally, committees in the SA are smaller and more intense than those of the other organs. They require all delegates to respond quickly and decisively to crises, and allow each member of the committee to play a critical role in advancing his or her own interests, fashioning meaningful debate, and crafting effective responses to the crises faced by the committee. The SA committees together span a wide range of topics, time periods and regions of the globe, and individually move very quickly due to their small size and generally more experienced delegates.

The application for the Specialized Agencies has closed at this time.

Class Year: 2021

Concentration: Sociology

Hometown: York, NE

Why HMUN? Harvard Model United Nations allows high school students from all around the world to come together and collaborate with people of different backgrounds and experiences. Having the experience to learn from others so different from you while discussing some of the world's most pressing issues is truly a remarkable experience that I wish all high schoolers could have, and HMUN gives over 3,000 students that opportunity.

Advice for New Delegates: Put yourself out there! It isn't always easy to speak in front of a large group of people or insert your new ideas into a directive, working paper, or draft resolution, but I promise it pays off. HMUN is a place to challenge yourself in new ways and grow as a public speaker and collaborator!

Fun Fact: Ryen is in an a cappella group and also in the process of recording an album with some friends!

Dear Delegates,

My name is Ryen Diaz, and I will be serving as the director of this year’s United Nations Security Council. Through this committee, we will be introduced to the difficulties of multiparty presidentialism and many concerns facing emerging nations. So that we may best work together in conference, however, let me first tell you a little more about myself.

I am currently a Sophomore at Harvard College. I was born in Orange County, California, but moved to rural Nebraska when I was ten years old. Since then, I have also spent time living in Spain and Morocco, which is what first got me interested in international relations. I have a multitude of different interests, ranging from Arabic and Spanish to singing in my a cappella group here on campus! Outside of my role directing for HMUN, I am the director of business and marketing strategy at HNMUN, our college conference, a director at HACIA Democracy, a Latin American conference put on by Harvard, and a delegate myself with Harvard’s travelling team, ICMUN. I also really enjoy going to lots of concerts and playing tennis when I get the chance. I am currently planning on concentrating in sociology with a secondary in ethnicity, migration, and rights, but also love photography and film.

With regards to HMUN 2019, my hope is that each of you to come out of this committee with more knowledge about the current crisis in Sub-Saharan Africa and the ramifications it is having on both regional citizens and the rest of the world. I also hope that committee will lend itself to active participation and collaboration that will help develop substantive debate and solutions. The topics we will be discussing are very sensitive and impact the day-to-day lives of many Congolese and other citizens around the globe, so I expect everyone to remain mature and sensitive throughout the course of the weekend. I look forward to seeing innovation and collaboration from each and every one of you over the course of the weekend.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any questions that may arise from now until conference. I am excited to see where you all take committee and cannot wait to work with each of you over the course of the weekend!


Ryen Amora Diaz
Director, United Nations Security Council

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to HMUN 2019! My name is Klaus Ashorn and I am proud to be your Crisis Director for the United Nations Security Council.

I am a Junior at Harvard studying Economics and Applied Mathematics. I’m Finnish by nationality, though I have also called Hong Kong home before coming to college here in the United States. At Harvard, I spend a lot of (read: too much) time on Model UN: I am the USG Finance of HNMUN, and a director and the Chief of Staff at HMUN China. I have also competed with Harvard’s travelling MUN team, and staffed multiple committees at our conferences in Boston and internationally. Outside of MUN, I enjoy piloting sailplanes, reading Andy Borowitz, and attempting to make every meeting as short as possible.

I am thrilled to work with Ryen and to shape the crisis element of the Security Council. Our discussion of Central African issues is sure to be informative, inspiring, and challenging. I wish you the best as you prepare, and invite you to get in touch if you have any questions about crisis or the committee in general.

Until HMUN 2019!


Klaus Ashorn
Crisis Director, United Nations Security Council

Class Year: 2020

Concentration: Economics and Applied Math

Hometown: Helsinki, Finland

Why HMUN? You get to have four days of fun while meeting great people from all over and learning a ton of new things!

Advice for New Delegates: We're all rooting for you to do well, so try to take it easy and ask us any questions you have.

Fun Fact: Klaus took a year off before Harvard to serve in the Finnish military.

The Situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo

The Democratic Republic of Congo has lived in tension ever since the 1994 Rwandan genocide, a tragedy that caused massive spillover of both Rwandan militia groups and citizens into the DRC. From 1998 to 2003, the Congolese government fought against many of these rebel groups, resulting in the death of 5 million people. When a peace treaty was finally signed and a transitional government was formed, it resulted in a weak and corrupt government that has continued to contribute to the violence in the region. Now, much of the mineral-driven economy is used to fuel this ongoing violence while the government takes little to no action in resolving its multitude of humanitarian violations.

As of April 2018, there are at least 70 armed militia groups that have taken root in the Democratic Republic of Congo. These militia groups have continued to grow in numbers, despite past UN actions, and have began governing in weaker parts of the nation. Millions of civilians have fled and are continuing to flee due to the fighting. Not only has the chaos been caused by the abundance of armed groups, but President Joseph Kabila added to the fire when he postponed the 2016 Presidential election that was to occur after his term came to an end. This has led to mass protest combated with governmental violence and tensions between the police and civilians has continued to increase. Not only is this political unrest and group violence resulting in the displacement of the Congolese citizens, but has also raised major issues of sexual violence, child soldier recruitment, witchcraft accusations, and several other major human rights violations.

As committee looks towards building a resolution, the Security Council will have to address larger governance and economical instability that have contributed to the violence, but also have to consult ways to combat the human rights violations occurring as a result of this violence. The Security Council must act quickly to protect the Congolese people before the violence spills over into surrounding regions, taking away the lives of millions more.

Class Year: 2021

Concentration: Undeclared

Hometown: Deerfield, IL

Why HMUN? HMUN is about living the dilemmas and crises faced by international leaders today and in the past. In the process, HMUN encourages delegates to hone their creativity, confidence, and character.

Advice for New Delegates: Take risks, do not be afraid to participate, and know that the staff is always here to support you!

Fun Fact: His grandmother's full name, Relli Miller, is a palindrome!

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to HMUN 2019! My name is Matthew Miller, and I could not be more excited to serve as your Director for the Historical Security Council, 1979. In this fast-paced committee, we will simulate pressing situations related to intervention in other countries as they arose in this pivotal year for world history. As Director, I will be throwing countless challenges your way that the Security Council certainly faced as it debated when it is just to intervene in other countries, or rather, when it is just to intervene to correct for other countries’ interventions.

Before I talk more about the committee, I want to introduce myself. I was born in Chicago and moved to Deerfield, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, at the age of two (most definitely my prime). I grew up with a Guatemalan caretaker who has taught me Spanish for the past eighteen years. Her personal stories sparked my interest in the Guatemalan Civil War. I’ve tried to take the gift of this language with me around the world. I spent the past two summers teaching English, computer literacy, and elementary school classes in the Dominican Republic. I’ve built houses in Costa Rica. Most recently, I spent my past summer in León, Spain, taking classes on the socioeconomic and political history of Spain since the Franco dictatorship.

I became involved in Model UN during my sophomore year of high school after a friend told me to apply for the team about 45 minutes before the application deadline. Though my procrastinative habits haven’t changed, my life otherwise has changed since joining. I loved the challenge of representing positions that often contradicted my personal convictions, the exposure to new mindsets on international relations, and the opportunity to debate and meet other students facing these same challenges. Last year, I served as an Assistant Director in Johnson’s Cabinet and SOCHUM at Harvard’s high school and collegiate conferences in Boston, respectively. Last spring, I joined the travelling Model UN team at Harvard, which has been a great experience.

In addition to Model UN, I also direct communications for the Harvard Political Union, work as a tour guide, and play several Intramural sports to stay in shape including soccer, basketball, flag football, volleyball, tennis, and yes, even ping pong. Academically, I still have not yet decided my major, but I know that I want to minor in Computer Science and Spanish. In the end, I will likely end up combining a STEM field with a humanities field for a double major.

In this committee, we will be navigating a turbulent, uncertain, and pivotal time in international relations. The larger questions that I hope to raise through the crises you face and the decisions you make in committee are questions of national sovereignty: when is it just to interfere with another country’s autonomy? When is it right for the international community to intervene to remedy aggressive expansion? We will live these challenges firsthand.

I am incredibly excited to see each of your ideas. Finally, if you ever have any questions about this committee, please do not hesitate to reach out!


Matthew Miller
Director, Historical Security Council, 1979
Crises in International Autonomy

1979 is a year rife with countries infringing on each other’s independence. National sovereignty, diplomatic immunity, and neutrality in extraterritorial conflicts are becoming terms of the past. In this year, Russia invades Afghanistan, which triggers an international conflict of interest to control the ideology of Afghanistan’s government that would have implications for decades to come. Additionally, Iranian revolutionaries take 66 Americans hostage at the US embassy. Finally, in this very same year, a bloody Civil War rages in Guatemala that would see powerful countries take proxy sides in the conflict.

The Security Council is the only body in the United Nations endowed with the ability to take concrete action to resolve these difficult conflicts related to sovereignty and intervention. The committee will face each challenge as it comes, which will call for bold, creative measures that ensure a neutralization of international conflict. Additionally, seeing as the P5 nations, or the nations whose unanimous consent is required to take any action through the Security Council have their interests inherently tied to many of these crises of sovereignty and often in opposition to one another, this committee while require especially intricate diplomacy to avoid World War III. Thus, the mission of the delegates in this committee will be not only to respond to the conflicts of sovereignty embodied in the Russian incursion into Afghanistan, Guatemalan Civil War, and Iranian Revolution, but also to set a precedent of the international community’s response to infringements on sovereignty that will leave a lasting impact on world history. How will a peaceful agreement be reached that takes into account the interests of all countries involved? Will it be possible to do so?

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to HMUN 2019! My name is Frankie Hill and I will be serving as your Crisis Director for the Historical Security Council. Welcome to HMUN 2019! My name is Frankie Hill and I will be serving as your Crisis Director for the Historical Security Council.

I am a Senior here at Harvard, studying Government with a citation in Spanish. I’m originally from Western Michigan and I’m very excited to meet you all. In my free time, I enjoy overanalyzing the political climate of fictional movie universes, writing poems, telling stories, and listening to 1960s protest folk.

Along with HMUN, I also staff Harvard’s College Conference (HNMUN), our On-Campus Conference (MSC), and travel on our Competing Model UN Team (ICMUN). Two summers ago, I taught Model UN at Best Delegate’s Model UN Institute. In general, I spend far too much time simulating international diplomatic crises.

This past summer, I worked at the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, investigating solutions for real, modern conflicts.

I’m very excited to be working with Matt this year to bring you into the world of 1979. This is a busy time at the height of the Cold War. Conflicts abound; from revolution, to invasion, to genocide, the Security Council grapples with questions of intervention and sovereignty. Your actions at HMUN will help to establish a precedent for the future of the Security Council.

I can’t wait to meet you all at HMUN 2019. Good luck!


Frankie Hill
Crisis Director, Historical Security Council, 1979

Class Year: 2019

Concentration: Government

Hometown: New Era, MI

Why HMUN? HMUN is a powerful force for education in the lives of thousands of High Schoolers. I didn't get the chance to do Model UN when I was in High School and I'm very enthusiastic about being able to provide it to other people.

Advice for New Delegates: Speak - Nobody ever got anywhere by staying silent. The whole reason you're here is to better yourself; no matter how nervous or scared you are, I guarantee you can provide some level of insight. Make yourself heard.

Fun Fact: In Frankie's own words: "A group of caterpillars is known as 'an army,' but a group of butterflies is not known as 'an air force'!"

Class Year: 2021

Concentration: Economics

Hometown: New Orleans, LA

Why HMUN? I am directing at HMUN because I would love to get to know an awesome group of high school students. High school is such an important time in a person’s life for self-discovery, and I hope that the delegates will be able to find something out about themsleves at conference.

Advice for New Delegates: Relax and have fun! Conference is such a great way to meet a diverse group of people and make new friends.

Fun Fact: As a kid, Cici was obsessed with all things Star Wars!

Class Year:2020

Concentration: Government

Hometown: West Des Moines, Iowa

Why HMUN? In my two years of staffing HMUN, I've never had a dull moment or boring day. Every single time I've walked into a committee room, I've been blown away by the level of debate and interest expressed by the delegates. On top of that, the staff is truly world-class, and I've made some of my best friends through working for HMUN. I wouldn't trade the experience for the world!

Advice for New Delegates: Always try and raise your placard and speak! The whole idea of the conference is to debate and discuss important topics, and if you never take the risk and speak, then why come? Even if you don't think you're a very good speaker, Model UN is one of the best ways to learn and improve your debate skills in a safe and supportive environment. I know I personally would never have the speaking skills I have now were it not for MUN!

Fun Fact: Sam nearly passed out while performing at Carnegie Hall!

Dear Ministers,

I am Cici Williams, and I will be your chair, W.E.B Du Bois. In this committee, we will explore the challenges that African nations faced after decolonization and will form the charter for the Organization for African Unity. I am looking forward to seeing all of you in committee and listening to all of the great solutions that you will come up with. Now, I’ll tell you a little bit about myself.

I am a Sophomore at Harvard College and a southerner at heart. I am originally from New Orleans, Louisiana, but I spent time living in quite a few other states after Hurricane Katrina. Most notably, I spent a few months in Kansas and then Texas. My family finally settled in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, but we plan to relocate to Atlanta soon. At school, I am studying economics and statistics. Outside of the classroom, I am involved in quite a few clubs. I am a volunteer for Harvard’s Small Claims Advisory Service, a director of administration at HNMUN, compete on Harvard’s Model UN team, ICMUN, and will be your director for HMUN. In my free time, I like to paint occasionally and read classic books. I love sitting down on a comfy chair with a good book and listening to some 40s jazz.

After I finish college, I would like to go to law school and adopt a sphynx cat or two. As of now, I’m interested in either corporate or contract law, but I’m open to just about anything. I would love to have a job that allows me to see the world, so I’m leaning toward corporate law. I love talking through problems and meeting new people, so my career path will hopefully suit me well.

At HMUN 2019, I would like for everyone to have fun while learning about a much glossed over piece of world history. This will be a committee that heavily emphasizes cooperation amongst groups of people with conflicting interests. In committee, your abilities in diplomacy will be challenged, but this will be a great opportunity to master your skills in persuasion and public speaking. I hope that everyone leaves committee on Sunday having learned about the diversity of culture and ideas on the African continent and with a greater sense of confidence in their personal strengths as a debater and diplomat.

In this committee, I want you to expand your knowledge of this part of history beyond the small paragraph it receives in history textbooks. The Pan African movement influenced many civil rights movements around the globe and was a major part in forming African identity. If I do my job right, you will become familiar with the complexities of the nation that you represent and different interpretations of what it means to be African while also having a blast. I hope that I can make this conference the best possible experience that I can for you. Let’s make HMUN 2019 memorable!


Sienna "Cici" Williams
Director, Formation of the Organization For African Unity, 1962

Dear Delegates,

My name is Sam Throm, and I will be serving as Crisis Director for Formation of the Organization for African Unity, 1962. I can’t wait to see all the different crisis plans you will all undoubtedly bring to the debate as we explore this truly unique period of history and its consequences for the world at large. There are more crisis plans than miles of African coastline, and I’m sure you will keep me on my toes!

I’m originally from West Des Moines, Iowa, although my interests have always been on what lies beyond the long midwestern horizon. I am a junior in Harvard College studying Government and French, and I have always been interested in international relations and diplomacy. The Harvard International Relations has become my home on campus, where I participate in both HMUN and our sister conference, HNMUN while competing in our travel Model UN team. I also teach international relations topics with the Harvard Program in International Education, and remain an active member of the Harvard Political Union, the oldest debate union in the country. After college, I’ve looked at everything from working with the US State Department to the American Olympic Committee, so the skills and experience learned in the committee room will serve quite well in the future!

While the substantive debate in the committee room is the heart of every Model UN committee, I believe the crisis elements are where delegates can really shine in letting their creativity and improvisational skills run rampant on history and committee. Decolonizing Africa is a fascinating time of hope, possibility, and change, and delegates should be aware that they’re not the only one planning surprises! While I do appreciate any and all creative crisis plans, delegates must always be aware of the cultural context and implications of their plans, especially as we engage with important historical debates of independence and dignity. Likewise, I encourage all participants to use this committee and their crisis plans as an opportunity to explore diverse viewpoints, both in debate and outside the committee room. HMUN brings people from all around the world to debate pressing world issues. Nothing offers the level of engagement with people with vastly different backgrounds except Model UN. Who knows? Maybe another delegate from across the globe has the best crisis plan you’ve heard!


Samuel "Sam" Throm
Crisis Director, Formation of the Organization For African Unity, 1962
Forming the Organization for African Unity

African countries faced severe oppression and resource depletion under colonization. In 1960, dozens of these were liberated. With this new liberty came instability, and African countries scrambled to erect autonomous governments. This led to the rise of the Pan African movement, which aimed to increase the unity of African people as a whole. Although Pan Africanism was popular, there were questions about what African unity meant. Some, like the Monrovia Group, preferred a type of unity similar to the United Nations. More radical groups, like the Casablanca Group, were interested in a model resembling a confederacy. These ideas divided the already unstable continent.

In addition to the issue of African unity, the continent faced several infrastructural and humanitarian issues. With many burgeoning governments came new ideas, and socialism was an attractive option for the fledgling African states. Around the globe, other movements for equality arose, drawing attention to racial and economic disparities in African countries. Within the continent, many ethnic conflicts continued post-decolonization, especially near borders. At this meeting, the Casablanca and Monrovia groups must work together to preserve both the autonomy of individual states and the future of Africa.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application is now closed.

Class Year: 2020


Hometown: Fargo, ND

Why HMUN? I really want to further an educational experience for high school delegates that may present a more creative form of learning and debate than is usually taught to them.I think HMUN is an incredible organization devoted to doing so, and I am eager to partake as a result! I also love this topic and wish a lot of people knew more about it.

Advice for New Delegates: Take this first and foremost as a learning experience, an opportunity to process a new topic in an usual way, and don't be discouraged if it is difficult or confusing in the beginning. It is the process that counts!

Fun Fact: For the first four years of her life Nada lived in the UAE and Egypt!

Suez Canal Crisis

After the British granted Egypt de facto independence in 1922, Egypt continued to have British-appointed rulers from the Ottoman Empire for three decades. Now, in 1956, your president is the first to overthrow British control via a coup d’etat. It is the first time in Egypt’s history that Egypt has a ruler from its own common people- and it is your job as the members of that leader’s cabinet to ensure Egypt’s continued independence and free Egypt from de facto independence. President Gamal Abdel Nasser, your leader, has just declared the nationalization of the Suez Canal and denounced any French or British shares in the canal.

There are rumors that the governments of Britain and France, both aggravated by this economic loss and also show of bravado by the Egyptian government, are in talks with Israel for military operations to take the canal back to its colonialist history. Your options are to either pursue military defense against Britain, France, and its ally Israel for continued nationalization of the canal, attempt diplomatic negotiations with the aggravated countries, or adopt a hard-line nationalist stance by striking a deal with the Soviet Union-a previous ally of yours- in order to secure arms to attack your former colonialistic powers. It is important to keep in mind the historical and political context of this nationalization when moving forward; specifically, the Arab-Israeli conflict and the pan-Arab nationalism movement will be vital in determining the appropriate way for Egypt to move forward, both as a nation and as a peoples, in order to secure its independence far past this moment into the coming decades.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application is now closed.

Class Year: 2019

Concentration: Statistics and Computer Science

Hometown: Philadelphia, PA

Why HMUN? Manav loves teaching high schoolers, whose shoes he was in not too long ago, about relevant international issues!

Advice for New Delegates: If you're inexperienced in crisis, don't worry! We are excited for you to take on this fast-paced Model UN simulation and learn about how to make quick decisions while staying abreast of what those around you are thinking. It will be a great lesson in diplomacy, analytical thinking, and policy-making at once. Make sure your goal is to learn, not to win, and you will succeed as a delegate.

Dear Delegates,

My name is Nada Attia, and I will be serving as President Gamal Abdel Nasser of Egypt, and director of the Egyptian cabinet of 1956. In this cabinet, we will be exploring the historical, political, and cultural context surrounding Nasser’s decision to nationalize the canal; including the Arab-Israeli conflict, British and French colonialism in the region, and Egypt’s previous relations with the Soviet Union in the 1948 arms deal with Czechoslovakia. Via this committee, you will learn the struggles that a formerly colonized state faces in its final push for real-not de facto- independence. I myself am deeply interested in the process of decolonization, especially the difficulties of pursuing decolonization as a country who has not had a leader from its own people in the entire history of its making. Beyond my own academic interest in British and French colonialism in the region of the Middle East, I also do have a personal connection to this committee- which I will tell you about in my introduction of myself!

I am currently a sophomore at Harvard College, but I have lived the majority of my life in Fargo, North Dakota, the biggest city in the state but still a tiny place in the Midwest. However, my parents came with my siblings and me, at 4 years old, from the small city of Talkha, Egypt. Thus, I have a personal interest in Egyptian history, and I love this committee as it allows me to learn more about the country of my parents- and my own country, as a dual citizen of Egypt and the United States. Beyond HMUN specifically, I am the Under Secretary General of Crisis and Historical Committees for WorldMUN-a community at Harvard which I absolutely love engaging in and was my first introduction to MUN. Beyond MUN entirely, my academic interests are primarily in medicine and sociology, specifically studying how social determinants of health like income or race affect health outcomes. I am very interested in how health disparities are made and maintained in and by the United States healthcare system.

After college, I hope to obtain a medical degree and/or a master’s in public health in order to further pursue my desire to address the institutional factors creating health disparities in the United States. I am not sure where I will be necessarily, but I do know that I would eventually like to also work to address institutional gaps in Egypt’s healthcare system- and would love to spend some time in Egypt in both the near and distant future. Keep in mind none of these plans are for sure, just really cool ideas that I would love to work on if I get the chance!

As for my plans for this committee of HMUN 2019 in particular, my primary goals are that each of you learn more about Egypt’s history of colonization by Britain and France-and apply the implications of Egypt’s process of decolonization to other independence movements and coups that are happening or have happened across the Arab world. I hope that, with your experience in this committee, you will learn skills of effective communication- including improving your skills of public speaking and negotiation. My primary goal for this committee is one of collaboration-ensuring that all delegates in the room have a voice and are able to actively contribute and engage with the subject and material present. I look favorably upon strategic thoughtful tactics-as opposed to only shows of pure military force or backstabbing tactics. Those less covert tactics can also be used, but not to the detriment of creating thought-out strategies that can ensure Egypt’s connections and alliances as a fail-safe for maintenance of its independence in the future. My primary goal is to ensure that you all have both an educational and a fun experience! Looking forward to meeting you all!


Nada A. Attia
Director, Suez Crisis, 1956

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to the sixty-sixth session of Harvard Model United Nations. My name is Manav Khandelwal, and I will be serving as your Crisis Director in the Suez Crisis, 1956. Along with your director, Nada Attia, we’ll delve into the action-packed world of the 1956 Suez Crisis, which tackles issues of nationalization, European imperialism, the Arab-Israeli conflict, and Cold War tensions. We hope you will learn plenty about Egyptian history, the politics of 1950s Middle East, and how to effectively work with others to handle international conflict.

A brief introduction about myself: I’m a current senior at Harvard studying Statistics and Computer Science. I am also extremely interested in history of all kinds, from 20th century American military campaigns to the Roman Empire to post-colonial India. I’m originally from the suburbs of Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, and am a passionate sports fan (supporting all Philly teams, A.S. Roma, and Manchester United). In addition to crisis directing for HMUN 2019, I will serve as Director-General for Harvard World Model United Nations 2019, an international college conference that changes location every year, and was the Director for the International Monetary Fund at Harvard Model United Nations India 2018.

Outside of Model UN, I have a number of interests that I’ve chosen to pursue at Harvard. I am on the Executive Board of the Harvard Financial Analysts Club as well as a sports editor for The Harvard Crimson, our daily newspaper. I am also heavily involved with dance, choreographing for the South Asian cultural show, Ghungroo, and performing in the hip-hop company, Expressions. I also serve as co-Social Chair for my residential community, Quincy House. I hope to pursue a career focused on creating and developing new technologies to better serve the needs of people around the world.

It’s almost inconceivable to think that HMUN has been around longer than my parents, but it is a testament to its immense purpose for our delegates. The names and faces may change every year, but our role as a dais does not: we have the opportunity to educate high schoolers, many of whom remind me of myself, on an important topic that will broaden their understanding of the world. I cannot wait to meet all of you, and I hope HMUN and this committee are incredible experiences for each and every one of you.


Manav Khandelwal
Crisis Director, Suez Crisis, 1956
Suez Canal Crisis

After the British granted Egypt de facto independence in 1922, Egypt continued to have British-appointed rulers from the Ottoman Empire for three decades. Now, in 1956, your president is the first to overthrow British control via a coup d’etat. It is the first time in Egypt’s history that Egypt has a ruler from its own common people- and it is your job as the members of that leader’s cabinet to ensure Egypt’s continued independence and free Egypt from de facto independence. President Gamal Abdel Nasser, your leader, has just declared the nationalization of the Suez Canal and denounced any French or British shares in the canal.

There are rumors that the governments of Britain and France, both aggravated by this economic loss and also show of bravado by the Egyptian government, are in talks with Israel for military operations to take the canal back to its colonialist history. Your options are to either pursue military defense against Britain, France, and its ally Israel for continued nationalization of the canal, attempt diplomatic negotiations with the aggravated countries, or adopt a hard-line nationalist stance by striking a deal with the Soviet Union-a previous ally of yours- in order to secure arms to attack your former colonialistic powers. It is important to keep in mind the historical and political context of this nationalization when moving forward; specifically, the Arab-Israeli conflict and the pan-Arab nationalism movement will be vital in determining the appropriate way for Egypt to move forward, both as a nation and as a peoples, in order to secure its independence far past this moment into the coming decades.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application has now closed.

Class Year: 2020

Concentration: Mathematics and Philosophy

Hometown: Gurgaon, India and Tucson, AZ

Why HMUN? All of us at HMUN are really passionate about making committee as substantive and interesting an educational experience as possible. You shouldn't have to worry as much about politics in committee, instead focusing on honing your understanding of the historical content.

Advice for New Delegates: Don't spend your time thinking about what criteria I might be looking for to decide awards. Instead, focus on immersing yourself into the experience of your character as much as possible, and playing your part in committee as authentically as you can. Have fun with it, research is supposed to be both frustrating and rewarding.

Fun Fact: In the spring of his freshman year, Jay had a bowl of cereal with every single meal that he ate, and it proved to be suprisingly difficult to break this powerful habit!

Class Year: 2020

Concentration: Math and Computer Science

Hometown: Houston, TX

Why HMUN? I love working with high schoolers to help broaden their horizons and develop my own abilities in exposing people to interesting aspects of history and international policy.

Advice for New Delegates: Make sure to start off strong, both in persuasiveness and substance of speech!

Fun Fact: Anirudh considers himself to be the least Texan person from Texas, but is stil a diehard Houston sports fan!

Dear Delegates,

My name is Jay Gopalan, and it’s my pleasure to serve as the Director for the Committee on the Future of Dravida Nadu this January! I think this committee will offer us the opportunity to simulate really interesting, fast-paced events, while also debating complex general themes that are prevalent in any post-colonial state.

I’ve spent much of my life moving back and forth between the United States and India. I went to middle school and half of high school in Gurgaon, and graduated from high school in Tucson, Arizona. Growing up, I heard the conflicting calls of my parents, teachers, and my own desires pulling me between disparate fields, so I’ve decided to have my cake and eat it too, by double majoring in both Math and Philosophy. Besides MUN, I like to play piano, and teach both independently and with a few organizations on campus.

I see this committee following the major events in the struggle for an independent state for Dravidian-speaking peoples history post-independence, with the goal of highlighting the complexities of secessionist movements across the world. As the group of individuals endowed with the responsibility of establishing a state for Dravidian-speaking peoples, you should act creatively and tactfully to further the interests of South Indians, as well as your character’s personal political goals. Given the long time-frame with several major developments, you will be representing some of the most influential leaders from around the given era.

As we know, in reality the movement for an independent Dravida Nadu was not successful. As such, I expect committee to deviate significantly from the actual history––you should come with some of the main problems with the actual movement identified, and be ready to correct them with your actions in committee.

Why am I being so vague? Partially because the uncertainty in this time period is important! India is an enormous, enormous country, and anybody who claims to understand it well is assuredly lying. We’re focusing on just a handful out of the many ethnicities in the country, and just one movement in those ethnicities’ histories spanning thousands of years.

One of the wonderful things about Model UN is that it provides a context that’s both fun and serious to approach important questions in committee. I look forward to meeting all of you, and I look forward to hearing everything you have to say about this fascinating topic.


Jayant "Jay" R. Gopalan
Director, The Future of Dravida Nadu

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to the sixty-sixth session of Harvard Model United Nations! My name is Anirudh Suresh, and I’ll be your crisis director in the Future of Dravida Nadu committee. I’m especially excited for this committee because of both its interesting political themes and my own connection to the topic. As someone of South Indian heritage, I have always been curious about the history and culture of that region of the subcontinent. Most accounts of Indian history and culture prioritize the North, concentrating on such historical periods as the Mauryan and Mughal Empires and the federal government in Delhi post-independence and neglecting topics from the Chola Empire to politics in the modern-day South. This committee aims to tackle the latter area by providing us with a lens with which to view the development of politics in the South today. In addition, by delving into one of many separatist movements--in particular, one that doesn’t get much coverage--in post-partition India, we will be able to understand the scope of dissent, conflict, and cooperation in a newly post-colonial world.

A little bit about myself: I’m currently a junior at Harvard studying Math and Computer Science. My academic passion for these technical fields is only matched by my interest in international relations and intercultural learning, which has driven toward conferences and organizations like HMUN. Proudly born and raised in Houston, Texas, I’m probably the least Texan person out there, but I love my roots and am a huge Houston sports fan! I love chatting about anything from global politics and interesting mathematical results to popping new rap music and professional soccer, and I look forward to the interesting conversations that we’ll share at conference!

Jay and I have been working hard over the past several months to make sure your conference experience contains a wide variety of interesting debate, novel insights, and takeaways on how to effectively conduct oneself in a crisis simulation. We see this committee as one that not only emphasizes contextual awareness and expertise but also underscores the importance of collaboration, discretion, and a clear vision of the bigger picture. Through this committee and your experiences with a diversity of delegates at conference, I firmly believe that you will come away from conference with a better idea of how to apply the knowledge you’ll gain toward critically analyzing and improving upon the world around you.


Anirudh Suresh
Crisis Director, The Future of Dravida Nadu
Nationalism and Ethnic Tensions in South Asia

The state of India as we know it today is a postcolonial device based on British convenience. India contains many different nations and peoples, often distinct in history, language, culture, and religion. Violence between Hindus and Muslims has overshadowed much of what is considered “communalism,” but the divisions in a country like India run much deeper––with six major religions, 22 official languages falling in four language families, and a fractious political history. This becomes even more complicated when one remembers that the ethnic groups in India are far from self-contained––stretching across India’s borders to other states in South Asia, and with ties extending through diasporas across the world.

As a structurally unitary state, India takes care in maintaining a strong federal government, deferring only limited powers to its states. After a long debate and dramatic riots across the country, India reorganized its states in 1956 along linguistic lines. While the intention of this act was to balance decentralization with a centrally-aligned framework, this structure leaves the country vulnerable to religious and socioeconomic tensions building up between states. Many different subnational groups have become militant at different points in Indian history––it’s a testament to human political brilliance that through all this, the nation’s borders have remained unchanged.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application has now closed.

Class Year: 2021

Concentration: Joint Concentration in Materials Science and Mechanical Engineering

Hometown: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

Why HMUN? HMUN brings together a truly unique group of talented and thoughtful youth, unlike any other conference she has seen and she is thrilled by the chance to be part of this process. Growing up as the daughter of a diplomat, she cannot attest more to the importance of building relationships and fostering an exchange of ideas between communities and individuals.

Advice for New Delegates: She attended header first conference at HMUN China in 2014, and almost all she remembers is how incredibly nervous she felt. Her advice to the new delegates is what she wishes she had known then - the participation of every delegate is so valued and so necessary to the success of committee, so please let your voice be heard. She also encourage delegates to get to know their fellow delegates as real people, because they will all be such interesting people. She still keeps in touch with friends she made during conferences from over 4 years ago.

Fun Fact: Egshiglen holds a Guinness World Record, but she'll keep it a secret unless you ask her about it!

Dear Delegates,

It is my honor to welcome you to our committee, the Mongol Empire, 1227, at the sixty-sixth session of Harvard Model United Nations.

My name is Egshiglen Chuluunhuu and I will be serving as your director. I am currently a Sophomore at Harvard College, studying Materials Science and Mechanical Engineering with a potential secondary in Sociology. I am from Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, but I have also lived in Turkey, Australia and the United States. My first experience with Model UN was HMUN China 2014 and, although it was very demanding at times, it was also one of the most meaningful learning experiences I had in high school. Since then, I have been pulled deeper into Model UN by the passionate and welcoming community here at Harvard, serving as an assistant director at HNMUN and HMUN 2018 and joining the competitive Model UN and debate team.

I am humbled to bring you a committee that joins together two of my greatest interests , Mongolian history and international diplomacy. As a delegate, you will have direct influence over the largest contiguous empire in human history, thus every decision that you make here as a delegate and as a committee has the potential to change the course of history as we know it. Although the Mongol empire is most known for its continental military conquests, this committee provides an opportunity to explore in depth the complex social, economic and geopolitical issues of the time, so I hope that you think broadly about your strategy as you prepare for committee.

Our Crisis Director, Sanchir Boldoo, and I will seek to bring you a dynamic, challenging crisis where your talents as a tactician and schemer will be tested. While everyone should work to advance their interests, remember that the heart of all committees are rooted in diplomacy and collaboration. As Genghis Khan’s mother once told him, “One arrow alone can be easily broken but many arrows are indestructible.”

I wish you the best of luck and I look forward to meeting you all in January!


Egshiglen Chuluunhuu
Director, The Mongol Empire, 1227

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to the sixty-sixth session of Harvard Model United Nations. I am Sanchir Boldoo, and I will be serving as your Crisis Director in the Mongol Empire, 1227. Your Director, Egshiglen Chuluunhuu, and I have devoted a lot of this past year to planning and preparing a committee highly relevant to world history. From dealings with Chinese and Persian dynasties to interactions with the papacy and Abbasid Caliphate, there will be no shortage of interesting material to engage with. As one of the few Mongolian students at Harvard, Egshiglen and I will do all we can to ensure that this committee provides an unforgettable experience.

I am currently a junior at Harvard College studying Applied Mathematics in Economics. While originally from Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, I spent some of my formative years in New York City and Washington D.C. From travelling through the boundless steppe of the Mongolian countryside to navigating the concrete jungle that is Manhattan, a diverse set of experiences has provided me with an appreciation for learning more about the world and meeting people of various backgrounds. I have worked on the SA Organ of HMUN for its past two iterations and will be a Director for Business of HNMUN 2019, HMUN’s sister conference.

My involvements outside of Model UN include working as the Social Media & Publicity Chair of the Harvard College Law Review, debating for the Harvard College Debating Union, and advising high-school students on college admissions. Outside of school, I love watching soccer, singing karaoke, and traveling to interesting places.

Both prior to conference and during committee sessions, I sincerely hope that each and everyone of you gain an understanding of the challenges that faced Eurasia and the Middle East in the 13th century. This moment in history provides us with foundational knowledge and an extraordinary lens to perceive following events like the Renaissance and the making of the modern world itself. During our journey across the Silk Road, you will intricately address questions and nuances pertaining to the legitimacy of rule, ideological identity, technological and cultural exchange, religious dissemination, and geopolitical strategy that can either lead to conflict or cooperation.


Sanchir Boldoo
Director, The Mongol Empire, 1227
The Mongol Empire, 1227

Born on the Central Asian steppe, Genghis Khan united hundreds of different tribes and dynasties to form one of the largest empires in human history. It is the year 1227 and the Great Khan has passed onto the next world, leaving behind his empire in the hands of his sons and daughters. If the Mongol Empire is to survive, the new leaders must now transition from a era of conquest to an era of rule.

The members of this council will be tasked with creating a modern system of governance to fit a nation spanning continental Asia. If they choose to unify the empire, the descendants of the Khan must secure economic stability along the Silk Route, the first driving force for globalization, and must answer the problem of a national identity among the countless cultural and ethnic fractures existing within its borders. Balance individual interests with the future of the empire wisely as every decision made in this moment will reverberate through world history.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application has now closed.

Class Year: 2019

Concentration: Applied Mathematics

Hometown: Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

Why HMUN? HMUN is an outstanding event that brings together students from a wide range of representations and cultural backgrounds. The conference serves a pedagogical purpose in promoting substantive debate on relevant issues facing our world today, but it also functions as a platform for the forming of wonderful memories and new friendships. It is my sincere pleasure to try and help contribute to this overall experience.

Advice for New Delegates: Start participating in committee as soon as possible. Once you put aside those early jitters, you can really start engaging with the substantive material that you had been preparing for so extensively. Even a small amount of momentum can be the catalyst that drives you forward for the rest of the conference. In addition, it is important to remember that the committee staff are dedicated to ensuring you have a wonderful time at conference. Please reach out to the dais regarding any questions or concerns you may have prior to conference or during committee session!

Fun Fact: The upper half of Sanchir's face has appeared behind Jake Tapper on CNN once!

Class Year: 2019

Concentration: Government

Hometown: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Why HMUN? HMUN is a space where students broaden their view of the world, learning in practice the value and necessity of respecting diversity and being tolerant. Having said this, it doesn't hurt that HMUN contributes to a better understanding of how political theory and political practice can come together in real life. This often gets overlooked in school and it's essential for high schoolers to develop these skills as early as possible.

Advice for New Delegates: Delegates -- HMUN will be one of the most amazing and life-changing experiences of your life. My main advice for you is to let go of positional bargaining and come prepared to compromise. In the long-run, negotiation skills and background knowledge in your topic will take you much further than simply trying to convince everyone that your opinion is right. Learn to listen attentively and I assure you that you will get the most out of this opportunity.

Fun Fact: Mariam is the only undergraduate who speaks Georgian!

Class Year: 2019

Concentration: Social Studies

Hometown: San Jose, CA

Why HMUN? There's nothing greater about Model UN than the opportunity it affords to delve deep into topics in international relations and explore them in a highly social and engaged setting. HMUN, with the energy of the delegates and the focus it has on education, embodies this for me. I'm honored to have this opportunity to participate in Harvard's MUN conferences, which have such a long tradition of quality and diversity, hefted higher by the insightfulness of its delegates.

Advice for New Delegates: There's nothing greater about Model UN than the opportunity it affords to delve deep into topics in international relations and explore them in a highly social and engaged setting. HMUN, with the energy of the delegates and the focus it has on education, embodies this for me. I'm honored to have this opportunity to participate in Harvard's MUN conferences, which have such a long tradition of quality and diversity, hefted higher by the insightfulness of its delegates.

Fun Fact: Sidney played Egyptian general Abdel Fatah el-Sisi in an Egyptian Revolution committee back in 2012, by the end of which he had taken over Egypt in a finely orchestrated coup and ousting of the nascent government. Less than half a year later, the exact thing happened in real life Egypt!

Dear Heads of State,

Welcome to the Summit on the Creation of the European State! My name is Mariam Topeshashvili and I will be your director for this committee. In this summit, you will have be tasked with drafting a Constitution for a new and unified European State and then applying the laws in this Constitution to real-life situations. Suffice to say, both of these steps will present huge challenges for all of you, so negotiation and diplomacy skills will be of utmost importance.

Having said this, I want to share a bit about myself so that you can understand why I’m so excited to have you all in this committee.

As a Senior at Harvard College, I study Government with a secondary in Economics, and my main areas of interest are Political Theory and the Comparative Politics of the Post-Soviet Space. I was born in Tbilisi, Georgia, but I grew up in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Therefore, I grew up in a very conservative family living in a very liberal country. This combination, as one would hope, has made me really interest in peaceful coexistence and negotiation skills, as I often found myself debating ideas in my head by juxtaposing all that I heard at home with all that I heard outside. At the age of twelve, I was already discussed how Brazil was actually a hybrid state with traces of both market and state economy, and how the roots of inequality in Georgia differed from the causes of inequality in Brazil. My interest in Model U.N. is therefore not altogether that surprising -- it combines everything that I love: debating, sharing knowledge and learning how to coexist with different people.

In high school, I was a delegate in a few conferences held in Brazil. Now, in College, I’m the English Committees Director for another Model U.N. that hosts the largest simulation of the OAS in the world. As you can probably guess, I love reading, writing and editing papers, so I will potentially pursue a P.h.D in Political Science after I graduate from Harvard. Nonetheless, before that happens, I will have the pleasure of serving as your Chair. I cannot wait to see you theorize and then actually apply theory to practice in this Summit on the Creation of the European State! You will have to find a way to bring often extremely opposite world views into one cohesive and coherent document, that will serve as your Constitution for the remainder of the Conference. For the successful convergence of Western and Eastern Europe under one unified state, for example, I urge you to let go of positional bargaining and try to dig deep into political theory to find creative ways to reach a compromise with fellow delegates.

All in all, the goal for HMUN 2019 and this committee in particular, is that you all learn how to go from theory to practice, and the potential implications that may come about from that transition. I remember taking philosophy classes in high school and wondering if I would ever actually be able to apply my learnings from Plato, Hobbes, Rawls and Nozick in policymaking. Well, I’m still not quite there yet, but it turns out you are, even if for a few days. In the Summit on the Creation of the European State you will have a unique chance to make political theory come alive, by first, drafting a unique Constitution for all nations in Europe, and second, by actually negotiating how best to apply the rules set forth by the group to case-specific contexts. I’m confident that you will all have amazing moments of self-discovery, and I cannot stress enough how excited I am to help you in this journey.


Mariam Topeshashvili
Director, Summit on the Creation of the European State, 2025

Dear Delegates,

Welcome to the 66th session of Harvard Model United Nations. My name is Sidney Li, and I will be serving as your Crisis Director in the Creation of the European State, 2025. I met your director, Mariam Topeshashvili, at a Model United Nations conference in Latin America. Since then, she and I have discovered strong common interests in political science and political philosophy. We are so excited to be running such a creative committee with all of you, and we’re excited for the range of crises and topics that we will bring to reinvigorate your understanding of modern-day Europe.

A brief introduction about myself: I’m a current Senior at Harvard studying the philosophy of social and ethical knowledge. I am also currently an undergraduate Fellow at the Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics of Harvard University. I grew up in San Jose, California, the self-proclaimed heart of the Silicon Valley. At Harvard, I’m deeply involved in planning and competing in Model United Nations conferences. I am currently the Director-General of Harvard Model United Nations China, and I served as the Under-Secretary-General for the Economic and Social Council and Regional Bodies for Harvard Model United Nations 2018.

During committee, I hope that each of you gains a newfound perspective on the challenges government leaders face through a substantive, realistic, and hands on experience. This is your chance to explore how world leaders overcome, or fail to overcome, major global issues. The challenges we will discuss are pertinent not only to the European continent, but also to your understanding of core historical, political, and philosophical concepts: legitimacy, citizenship, nationalism, and modern governance.

I look forward to experimenting with new ideas and engaging in exciting crises with you. Along the process, I hope you collaborate closely with your fellow delegates and participate deeply in the educational role of Harvard Model United Nations.


Sidney Li
Crisis Director, Summit on the Creation of the European State, 2025
The Creation of the European State

It’s 2025. A group of European countries have voted to form, for the first successful time in history, a unified European state. However, many questions have been left unanswered, and a commission of Presidents of some of the major European countries has been formed to address these issues. As representatives of the European people, they have been tasked with framing a Pan-European Constitution and nurturing the nation through its early years. The highest-priority topics at hand include: navigating multinational representation, deciding on a form of government, planning the level of integration of the former European countries, redesigning the economy’s monetary policy and currency, managing new trade regulations, leading economic development, ensuring intra-european cooperation, regulating migration & citizenship rights, and deciding the future of old colonial holdings.

You are delegates with great power and great responsibility, and you should not be blind to the lessons of history. This committee will require sharp negotiation and diplomatic skills, as well as a nuanced diagnosis of Europe’s economic, political, and cultural trends. At time of growing multiculturalism around the world, followed by severe authoritarian and nationalist backlash, you must also be cognizant of how this project will be perceived and received by other nations and peoples. Furthermore, you should not assume that all the citizens of Europe are in total support of this plan, and much has still to be done to demonstrate and protect the legitimacy of any government that is created. The challenge that you will face this year is gargantuan, and we urge you to be well-prepared.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application has now closed.

Class Year: 2021

Concentration: Computer Science, Secondary in Government

Hometown:Mansoura, Egypt

Why HMUN? Hossam has been involved in Model UN since his first year of high school. He quickly became very passionate about MUN, and especially running conferences for delegates. Seeing delegates learn, evolve and develop over the course of the conference brought him enormous joy. HMUN in particular was a chance to continue to do that in college, and bring joy to high school students!

Advice for New Delegates: Just don't stress too much about awards or competition. The important thing is to do what you want to do, be confident while doing it, and have fun!

Fun Fact: Hossam had never seen a squirrel before he came to college!

Class Year: 2020

Concentration: History and Science: Medicine and Society

Hometown:Cleveland, Ohio

Why HMUN? HMUN fosters a pedagogical culture that emphasizes diplomacy at its core. Moreover, delegates at HMUN are enthusiastic and bring with them the perspectives they've molded from their own hometowns. HMUN is unparalleled in its ability to bring together like-minded high school students ready to impact the world with a sense of urgency and sympathy in regards to the biggest issues the international community faces.

Advice for New Delegates: HMUN can be intimidating but delegates should try their best to have fun above all! Delegates should recognize the "real" element to all the topics presented at HMUN and value diplomacy to the highest extent that they can.

Fun Fact: Safa's family is originally from Palestine!

Dear Delegates,

My name is Hossam Mabed, and I will be serving as the President of the Syrian Arab Republic, and directing the committee on the Syrian Cabinet, 2020. Over conference week, we will be both repairing and rebuilding Syria from scratch after a brutal civil war that has left the country and its people torn to pieces. We will discuss themes of reparation and reconstruction. and tackle challenges like internal disagreements, refugee crises, threats to sovereignty, and foreign military military presence, that threaten the very existence of our new regime. We will also tackle initiatives to rebuild a war-torn country, which has had its population scattered as refugees around the world, and its economy devastated in a brutal civil war, that turned into a proxy war involving multiple world and regional superpowers. Through this committee, I hope that we will together learn about one of the most important current issues in international relations from a new perspective. However, allow me to first introduce myself, and my vision for this committee.

At Harvard, I am concentrating in Computer Science with a Secondary in Government. Despite that, I have a wide and eclectic collection of interests, ranging from Physics, to Psychology, to Philosophy. I’m very involved with the Model UN community at Harvard. I’m serving as a director for both Harvard-run conferences HMUN and HNMUN, as well as a delegate at the Harvard travelling team ICMUN. Besides MUN, I am also very passionate about the Palestinian cause, and very involved with the Palestine Solidarity Committee on campus.

Having been born and raised in the Middle East, I am deeply interested in Middle Eastern politics, which manifests itself in this committee for HMUN 2019. Following the fundamentally educational goals of HMUN, my goal for this committee is for each one of you, to walk out with a better understanding of one of the most important issues in the world, but one that is often very misunderstood. I hope you will gain new insight by engaging in this issue, not as a third-party observer, but dividing deep into the issues facing Syria and embodying real people involved.

Since this is a crisis committee, I expect that there would be a lot of scheming happening in the background. However, I would like to re-emphasize the importance of the educational and substantive goals of this committee. Since this is a very sensitive issue dealing with millions of real lives of real people, I ask you that you be mindful of the impact your actions might have, and respectful of your fellow delegates. I hope that you will truly attempt to impersonate your delegates, and cooperate dutifully on rebuilding a new Syria, while keeping true to your core values and beliefs, and the best interests of your constituency. At last, I would also encourage you all to get creative, and have a lot of fun with this topic! It’s a topic that is very relevant, and because of that, it will be rewarding to attempt to address the real challenges and issues facing a potential new Syrian government. I hope you all enjoy your time with this committee, and that HMUN 2019 is a fun and educational experience for all of you!


Hossam Mabed
Director, Syrian Cabinet, 2020

Dear Delegates,

First and foremost, welcome to HMUN 2019! My name is Safa Salem and I have the utmost pleasure of serving as your crisis director for this year’s Syrian Cabinet, 2020. Your director, Hossam Mabed, and I are especially eager to run this committee and cannot wait to give you all the most rewarding, educational, and fun experience as possible.

A little bit about myself: I am a Junior at Harvard College pursuing a concentration in History and Science with a focus on Medicine and Society along with a secondary in Global Health & Health Policy. My family originally hails from Jerusalem, but I spent most of my life growing up in Cleveland, Ohio. When I’m not doing anything MUN-related on campus, you can find me running along the Charles River, eating knafeh with the Society of Arab Students, or “studying” in any one of the exorbitant number of libraries across Harvard. I cannot wait to invoke a Middle Eastern flare on HMUN this coming year!

I began my trek into the world of Model UN during my sophomore year of high school, and could not stay away when I entered college. For me, Model UN has given me the environment where I can delve deep into my passion for international relations while also meeting wonderful people from around the world interested in the same things as me. In terms of my Model UN experience, I have staffed the previous two iterations of the Security Council at HNMUN (HMUN’s sister college conference), along with the Security Council at HMUN. I have also competed on the collegiate circuit with ICMUN – Harvard’s travelling competitive Model UN team. For the 2018-2019 academic calendar, I will be serving as one of the two Head Delegates of ICMUN. Crisis committees have become habitual at this point and I am super excited to control the flow of crisis in this specialized agency.

I feel absolutely honored to run this committee with Hossam, one of the most hard-working, enthusiastic, and driven people I’ve met in my time at Harvard. I have no doubts about his ability to make this committee as fun, exciting, and pedagogical as possible for all of you. He’s been hard at work crafting his vision for this committee and I’ll be fulfilling it as much as possible through the crisis component.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any crisis questions that may arise from now until conference. I am enthusiastic to see where you all take committee and simply cannot wait to work with each of you!


Safa Salem
Crisis Director, Syrian Cabinet, 2020

The year is 2020. The US escalated its attacks against the Syrian regime led by Assad, and successfully topple him after Russia backed down from full-scale conflict. A series of negotiation efforts follow soon after, encompassing representatives from multiple factions of Syrian society, as well as stakeholders from regional and world superpowers, in order to decide on a new path forward. Despite internal disagreements that almost lead to the outbreak of a new civil war, a fragile new Syrian government is formed.

The new Cabinet has just recently assumed power. They are faced with a multitude of challenges, as the new government attempt to both repair the damage left by the civil war, and rebuild a new state and a new government system. The civil war has left multiple Syrian cities and urban centers severely damaged. Continued foreign military presence threatens the independence of the new government and the sovereignty of the new state. Divisions between the different groups and factions threaten the stability of the new regime. Meanwhile, millions of Syrian nationals continue to live abroad as refugees, while the Syrian economy has been devatested. Members of the Cabinet needs to work dutifully to collaborate to repair all these damages, and build a new government and state that avoids a new civil war, and regains the stability and prosperity of Syria, all while holding true to their beliefs and their best interests. Will they succeed in rebuilding a new Syria, or will they crumble under the pressure of their divisions?

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application has now closed.

Class Year: 2021

Concentration: Philosophy

Hometown: Istanbul, Turkey

Why HMUN? In addition to entering the world of diplomacy, you will make great friends and surround yourself with a group engaged people that is hard to find anywhere else.

Advice for New Delegates: Do not be afraid to make any mistakes! HMUN is a learning experience for everyone and just make sure that you make the most out of it.

Fun Fact: Umut ran in an intercontinental marathon!

Class Year: 2019

Concentration: Classics and History

Hometown: Melrose, MA

Why HMUN? Joe loves the small committees of the SA because he thinks they facilitate more in-depth discussion of important issues, and HMUN SA in particular is a unique opportunity to get high school students involved in these important issues and learn from their perspectives.

Advice for New Delegates: Listening to your fellow delegates is just as important as speaking in committee!

Fun Fact: Joe's favorite Model UN role was Marcus Tullius Cicero!

Dear Judges and Advocates,

My name is Umut Arslan and I will be serving as the President of the International Court of Justice on the case of Croatia vs. Serbia, concerning the “Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.” In this court, we will re-examine the events that happened during the Croatian War of Independence and we will hear the cases of both sides to make the decision of whether Serbia is guilty or not. It will be crucial for us remain objective and professional throughout the court hearings and base our decisions on the evidence we hear, but we will have plenty of time to get to know each other as well.

I am currently a sophomore at Harvard College and I was born and raised in the heart of Istanbul, Turkey. I am currently undecided about what I will study, but I am very much interested in studying Philosophy and Government as my concentration and Economics as my secondary. I love studying languages and in addition to my language citation in French, I plan to study Italian and Spanish as well. On campus, I am involved with the Woodbridge International Society, The Harvard Democrats and the Middle East and North Africa Initiative. I have no idea about what I will do after graduation, I know that it will be something about business in arts.

HMUN 2019 ICJ will be my fifth time in the court and I am very excited to direct the case between Croatia vs. Serbia as it was my introduction to the ICJ five years ago. I have been in your shoes both as a judge and an advocate, and I can assure you that this will be a memorable experience for all of you. The ICJ may be different from the other crisis committees you may have participated in the past, but you will soon see that the way that it is structured will allow you to learn how the international legal system works. It will be very intense at times, but I believe that you will appreciate the interactive nature of the court in a defined structure. You will learn how to base your decision on evidence, distance yourself from your personal opinions and most importantly judge your decisions against those of other participants around you. We will all learn a lot during this process, but our small size will also allow us to become a social committee.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me with any of your questions and I look forward to meeting all of you!


Umut Arslan
Director, International Court of Justice

Dear Delegates,

My name is Joe Valente, and I am honored to serve as the Crisis Director of the International Court of Justice for Harvard Model United Nations 2019. I want to welcome you on behalf of the entire committee staff, and I look forward to seeing you all at conference in January.

I am currently a Senior at Harvard College, living in Kirkland House and concentrating jointly in Classics and History, with a secondary field in Economics. I am passionate about the Classics and particularly love the political history of the Roman imperial period and Roman foreign policy.

I was born and raised just north of Boston, and chose to stay nearby for college in part because I love the city. Outside of Model UN, I am the Co-Director of Harvard’s Habitat for Humanity Campus Chapter, and President of the Harvard Classics Club.

While the elements of conspiracy and political intrigue will certainly keep committee lively, this topic is really about much more than this. The International Court of Justice discusses some of the most important issues of our times, humans rights and international law to name a few. These issues and topics may take different forms today than in our topic era, but they are no less central to our discussions of the modern world, humanity, and the international system. I can’t wait to see you all discuss these issues in Boston this January, and I am really excited to learn from your perspectives on the ICJ. Please feel free to reach out to me or Umut, our Director, with any questions or concerns.


Joseph "Joe" Valente
Crisis Director, International Court of Justice
Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide

The International Court of Justice case of Croatia vs. Serbia on “Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide” concerns the controversial history of the Croatian War of Independence as a result of the collapse of Yugoslavia. As ethnic minorities that did not have the same point of view on independence lived in Croatia, Croatia and the Serb-controlled Yugoslav People’s Army entered into a five-year clash where both parties claimed sovereignty for different reasons. The result of the conflict was tens of thousands of people dying and hundreds of thousands of people being displaced combined for both sides, the countries’ economy crashing with long-term effects and most importantly eliminating a generation of people. What distinguishes this case from other post-independence belligerence cases is that whether the actions that there is not a consensus on the interpretation of the concept genocide and both sides have equal weighing strengths and weaknesses. The ICJ in HMUN 2019 will investigate evidence provided by both sides of the conflict to comment on concepts such as definition versus applicability, intent versus results and law versus ethics in order to judge a controversial event bereft of personal inclinations. The primary aim of this case is primarily to judge the event based on the accusations that are made, but the underlying methodology will be judging the efficiency and legitimacy of the legal theory in a controversial case. Law is a concept that has to accommodate the status quo, and this case will examine to what extent law can be stretched to be as objective and comprehensive as possible.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application has now closed.

Class Year: 2020

Concentration: Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology

Hometown:Sarasota, FL

Why HMUN? Competing in MUN in high school was not only fun for Marinna, but it was also incredibly important in shaping her views on the world and her passion for health policy and advocacy. Marinna hopes to be part of creating that experience for our next generation of leaders!

Advice for New Delegates: Don't be afraid - of asking questions, of saying something incorrect, of doing something wrong, etc. At her first conference, Marinna choked during role call and pronounced her delegation name entirely wrong, and yet six years later she still hasn't stopped her involvement in MUN! Treat everything, especially mistakes, as learning experiences and opportunities for fun stories later on.

Fun Fact: In middle school gym class, Marinna only made one touchdown during her football "season." It was because everyone was so surprised she caught the ball they let her run with it to the other end of the field (they also had to tell her to run the other way first)!

Dear Reporters,

I would like to welcome you to the Press Corps of Harvard Model United Nations 2019! My name is Marinna Okawa, and this will be my third year as a staff member of HMUN as well as my third year of working in a Press Corps committee. Last year I directed Press Corps for Harvard National Model United Nations, our conference for college delegates and I cannot wait to see how the committee will unfold, written from new perspectives and for a new audience.

I am a Junior at Harvard College concentrating in Human Developmental and Regenerative Biology with a Secondary in Global Health and Health Policy. I was born in Maryland but grew up in Florida, which could explain my love of oranges, Disney, and the beach. Two of my favorite activities throughout high school were Model United Nations and the school newspaper, The Torch. Through these clubs, I learned how to process various platforms of information to form my own opinions on the world around me as well as how to communicate these ideas.

Throughout college I have continued to pursue work in international relations and publications. I travel with the Harvard College MUN team, I serve as the Under-Secretary-General of the General Assembly for Harvard National Model United Nations, and I work on layout for a variety of on-campus publications including Harvard International Review, Harvard Yearbook Publications, and Harvard Ichthus.

Media has the ability to serve a variety of roles: it can influence a number of different audiences, it can preserve experiences and events, and it can provide visibility to a person or even an entire population that may otherwise feel forgotten or unheard.

Each Press Corps reporter will take on the role of a news organization, with its own writing style, regional audience, and political leaning. As a delegate, you will be in charge of witnessing other HMUN committees and communicating the information you learn to other attendees of the conference through articles that will be posted on the HMUN news website. Additionally, you will be able to utilize social media to post live updates of crisis events and crucial developments that occur throughout the conference.

As you write articles, it is essential that you bear in mind the personal aims of your organization and how those may affect the manner in which you deliver information to the public. You will have access to information that no other delegates at the conference will, from speaking opportunities with a variety of delegates and staff members alike, to witnessing the development of multiple committees at once. You will be reporting on a range of topics and events, from the merging of a draft resolution in a General Assembly to a major crisis event in a Specialized Agency. Accuracy, timeliness, and flexibility are important to maintain throughout the conference.

It is my hope that you will not only have fun, but will also learn more about the fast-paced nature of journalism and its potential impacts on the international community.

Please reach out to me with any questions or concerns, and I look forward to meeting all of you in January!


Marinna Okawa
Director, Press Corps

Welcome to Press Corps for HMUN 2019! Press Corps is within the Specialized Agencies organ but provides a very different opportunity from all other committees offered at conference. Press Corps delegates will each be assigned a news organization from around the world and work throughout the conference to publish articles surrounding the debate of other committees. These articles can take the form of op-eds, interviews, exposés and a myriad of other journalistic styles. Delegates will get to engage in formal debate surrounding topics related to journal ethics and standards and also get to move outside the committee to try to apply these discussions to pieces based on observations collected by sitting in on other committees. In this way, Press Corps offers a chance to experience many types of committees as well as for each delegate to produce individual products to be featured on the HMUN 2019 news stream.

Because of the non-traditional format of this committee, delegates will be working very closely one on one with the director and assistant directors and receiving a lot of individualized feedback. Delegates will be asked to critically think about who speaks for whom in journalism, what impact these words have, and how censorship in the media is experienced worldwide, while also being asked to apply these concepts to their own writing. Creativity is highly encouraged and there will be a lot of personal freedom for the delegates to mold their pieces and their MUN experience to be the one best suited for them. Inside of the committee room, Press Corps will be an opportunity to participate in interesting debate and gain constructive criticism on their works. Outside of the committee room, Press Corps will offer the chance to get hands on experience practicing journalism, learning about other committees and organs, meeting more delegates than one would in just one committee room. Finally, we hope our delegates leave this conference not only with a better understanding of journalism and the world, but with a new lense on press, the media and how this can and does relate to international politics every day.

Note: Assignments to this committee are by special application only. The special application has now closed.