Twelve James Monroe High School (JMHS) students will travel to Atlanta Georgia, from Oct. 15-18 for the Georgia Tech Model United Nations (GTMUN) Conference. JMHS has participated in this prestigious event several times, having last done so in 2019. Previous attendees have noted that due to its rigor it is excellent preparation for the Harvard MUN Conference, which JMHS has twice been selected to attend. The students will join over 1,000 other high school students from across the United States and overseas to discuss and debate critical topics such as equal pay for women, preventive health for refugees, bioterrorism, rural internet access, rural nutrition, circular economies, and justice for immigrant domestic workers.
The JMHS debaters will represent the Republic of Lebanon, a democratic republic located between Israel and Syria. They will serve on a variety of committees working on problems endemic to both Lebanon and the entire world: Defense and Security, Economics and Finance, Social and Humanitarian, Decolonization, Legal, Labor, Women, Refugees, and a Plenary session with all the participating countries involved.
Selection of the 12 students was based on preparation of a position paper and an interview with a panel of two adults, Dr. Scott Womack and Ann Lion. Rick Eades assisted with review of the position papers as well. The position paper described the issue being debated in a general way, what the UN was already doing about it (if anything), Lebanon’s experience with the problem and its own efforts to address it, and recommendations for action by the UN on the topic. The interview consisted of a question and answer session on the topic and Lebanon’s proposed solutions. After interviewing nineteen candidates those selected were Shane Arthur, Emma Ballard, Braydie Carr, Michael Fraley, Leighana Guzman, Aleigha Hill, Luke Jackson, Hannah Jewell, Grace McClure, Dylan McDade, Cole Thomas, and Bryceson Whitt. The selection process was very challenging this year, as each of the nineteen candidates performed well on both the papers and interviews. Although Model United Nations is not a class at JMHS as it is in some other high schools, the students gain valuable academic experience in research, critical thinking, logic, written and verbal communication, and empathy by participating in it.
The debate competition is not funded by Georgia Tech and would not have been possible without the generosity of the Monroe County Board of Education, which approved funds from the school levy to assist with the trip. Each student is also responsible for cost sharing a portion of the trip and we are requesting donations in any amount to help offset the financial burden on them and their parents or guardians. If you wish to contribute please contact the Maverick Debate Coach, Dr. Scott Womack, at 304-753-5182, on Facebook Messenger, or via email at email@example.com