Staffing a MUN Conference
Adam Mawji — Chief of Staff
November 23, 2018
How to apply
After delegating multiple times you may aspire to grow in your Model UN Career and further yourself into the community by leading delegates in the fashion as your dais members have lead you.
The first step in applying for a Model United Nations conference is to choose a conference to staff at. If you feel very confident in your abilities, checking the major hotel conferences’ web pages and facebook pages will alert you to when their staff applications are open and you can try and apply. However, if you are less confident and would like to staff in a less intimidating scenario, you have the option to apply for day conferences which are MUN simulations that only last one day. This can give you a much better feel for what being adais would actually be like and could be good practice for backgrounder writing if you want to be a director at a hotel conference like PacificMUN.
Finally, when you may be considering starting to staff, do not concern yourself with what awards you have. Everyone in the community started somewhere and the vast majority of your application will not be based on how many awards you have but rather how committed, passionate, and competent you are for the roles you apply for. Remember, awards are not everything and while some consider them to indicate skill, anyone can staff if they have enough dedication and determination to put their effort into the conference.
Writing your Application
Within your written application, it is critical to be yourself. The most important thing is not to curtail your responses to questions towards what you think the Chief of Staff wants to hear. The most honest and genuine answers are typically also the most unique ones and those are what stand out when reading through hundreds of applications. Therefore, in the written portion, ensure that you communicate who you are in your own tone and address specific points why you would be not just good for the role, but the best person for it.
To prepare for your interview, go over some common questions you may be asked to ensure you are confident in articulating who you are as an individual. The purpose of the interview is for you to distinguish yourself from other applicants. How you wish to do this can be however you choose. If you are confident in your abilities and are applying for the position of director prove to the Chief of Staff that they can rely on you to write backgrounders by articulating your viewpoints and the counter-arguments on specific issues. If applying for chair, show that you are approachable to new delegates and that you have a unique personality. Ultimately, the Chief of Staff is looking for someone they can trust to be reliable in accomplishing tasks and representing the conference proudly. Most fundamentally, be your confident self and don’t be nervous.
At the Conference
When staffing for your first time, there will come a time when you need to lead the debate. In this capacity, you should have reviewed your Rules of Procedures to ensure you know how the debate should flow. Following this review it is important to know how to be articulate in actually guiding the debate. Below are some phrases dais members frequently use to lead the committee:
- Decorum delegates — to start a committee session
- All delegates wishing to speak please raise your placards now - to ask for willing delegates during the primary or secondary speakers list or a moderated caucus
- The dais will now be taking any points or motions - to ask for any points or motions after the secondary speakers list has been run through
One of the biggest issues for all staff members new and old is professionalism at the conference especially with friends around. To ensure you are profesional make sure you discuss with your friends how you would like to conduct yourself in a responsible manner and they should respect this by not trying to interfere with your ability to staff effectively. Also, in regards to communication, it should be advised to stay off social media during the conference to set an example for your delegates. Finally, the biggest factor pertaining to professionalism is mandating yourself to lead the committee and set a strong example for your delegates. This includes wearing professional clothes during the committee sessions, interacting with delegates in a respectful manner, and communicating on official channels while refraining from using social media.