There has been a gradual conceptual JUEMUN evolution in the seven
conferences since 2010. This on-going evolution has led to four key developments.
First change—size: JUEMUN got bigger and bigger, growing from 50 delegates in 2010 to 396 participants in 2016. That size became very difficult to manage properly. Meeting rooms, hotel space, food, transportation and all the other logistics were challenges beyond the capacity of our students, staff, and teachers who were already busy enough in their everyday lives at university.
Another issue related to size is the preservation of quality. Quantity can have a negative impact on quality. Our empowerment model to make Japanese students more active abroad depends on keeping committees small enough to ensure full student participation. With only about 10 to 12 students on one JUEMUN committee each delegate has lots of opportunities to become a core member of the conference. Some of the most exciting MUNs have more than 2,500 delegates and some very large committees but less assertive students may feel left out and they may get left behind.
From 2017 we will limit the number of JUEMUN delegates to 150 in 3 meetings of 50, and 5 committees of 10 students each. This is a better size to organize and it will ensure a better learning experience for all of our students.
Second change—high standards for delegates: Student dedication and capacity is the foundation of a high quality JUEMUN educational experience. We have always had lots of hardworking, very able students involved in JUEMUN and we want to encourage and carry on that tradition. Each delegate must be willing and able to communicate in English on the conference topics for three full days. If students are highly motivated, well-prepared on the topics, and have solid English communication skills, the conference will likely bring out the best in each delegate and each delegate will contribute to the success of other delegates. JUEMUN is committed to setting a high standard.
Third change—Internationalization: In 2013 and in 2016 we reached the 40% target for International students and we will try our best to make this a strong JUEMUN feature every year from now on.
Fourth change—Model UN Press Centre (MPC): What is new? A professional journalist will prepare students in her Journalism course to report on JUEMUN. The JUEMUN 2017 Model UN Press Centre (MPC) will focus on the fundamentals of news reporting and will involve fewer student journalists, fewer faculty Advisors, and fewer student tasks. The Press Centre’s tasks can be successfully completed with any set of available equipment. The JUEMUN MPC will be led by a practicing Journalist, Atsuko Shigesawa and her own class of journalism students. She very successfully piloted the MPC at NMUN-Kobe.
JUEMUN is full of educational and cultural learning advantages that may become turning points in teachers’ and students’ lives. A past JUEMUN delegate, Hiroki Imura, believes it is so:
“I never really used English in any important way at high school. I studied grammar, I practiced pronunciation, I made word cards. I translated sentences and short stories. I didn’t do very well. When I was a first year university student at JUEMUN, I realized that all that English knowledge and skills were very useful but what was important – to have something to say that I cared about to people who cared. For the first time, I knew why I was studying English and how I wanted to live my life. By the time, I graduated my super high English test scores shocked my family and friends!”
Craig Smith & Lori Zenuk-Nishide, JUEMUN Co-Founders