DAHMUN builds heaven beyond the havoc


Saudi Gazette

— From sweaty arms, trembling legs and cracking voices, speaking publicly on a stage is a terrifying task; making your blood run cold. However, it is a crucial skill to have in this world. Dar Al-Hekma University Model United Nation’s (DAHMUN) 8th annual conference polished students not just with public speaking skills, but catered them with the knowledge and experience to reach for the stars. It concluded with a spectacular ceremony at Dar Al Hekma University’s auditorium last week.

With continuous violence worldwide, DAHMUN’s three-day conference was themed “Beyond the Havoc, Building Heaven”. Students completed registration online on the DAHMUN website after which they were sent country assignments, and given access to substantive content that helped them prepare for the conference.

“DAH has prepared its students since 2008 by visiting various countries and attending conferences,” said Dr. Chaman Rahim, who is a proud founder and an honored advisor of the International Club that features DAHMUN. “We have been to Harvard twice for MUN, and we were able to receive honorable mentions. We are planning to take our girls to Geneva to visit UN headquarters and to have firsthand experience of UN sessions in February,” Dr. Rahim told Saudi Gazette

The conference was a live demonstration of the wisdom of Model United Nation (MUN) as a simulation of the United Nations. It offered young delegates the opportunity to experience what it meant to be a leader and a policy maker. It broadened their vision by initiating them into leaders of world organization. It motivated them to read and research, to discuss and interact with their peers. The delegates that emerge from MUN are equipped with greater confidence, enriched with problem solving and public speaking skills, and endowed with leadership potential.

“Our girls who participate in DAHMUN simply shine, and they are excellent in public speaking,” Dr. Rahim said, while expressing her delight.

The conference featured five different segments. Each segment debated on prevailing substantive global issues — the United Nations Institute for Disarmaments Research (UNIDIR) dealt with Cyber Warfare. The Security Council chaired by Taybba Baig and Maryam Khan talked about taking actions against chemical weapons. Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) discussed effects of climate change on Human Population. The topic of Historical Cabinet was the Gujarat (India) Genocide that took place from Feb. 2002 until March 2002. Whereas the topic under debate in Human Rights Council (HRC) chaired by Tamarah Khan & Larissa Ann Valles was Human Rights Violations in Incarceration Facilities. It highlighted the deprivation of human rights to prisoners as an act of violence against humanity and the law.

“We are the only Model UN program in any academic institute in Saudi Arabia and we are very proud of it,” remarked Dr. Saleha M. Abedin, who is an advisor to the President, Dean; Graduate studies and Scientific Research. More than ten schools visited Dar Al Hekma this year and Doha Tul Jazeera won the best delegation award.

Dr. Abedin stated, “Our students performed exceptionally well in every country they visited for MUN, and received appreciation from other teams’ trainers. They know that our girls are impressive.”

On the vision behind organizing such a large scale event as DAHMUN, she said, “We are preparing the girls not just for tomorrow; not only for this part of world, but for the world stage. As the world is now shrinking, people here in Saudi Arabia need to have this kind of exposure especially the Saudi girls need to be trained and prepared for a career in diplomacy and Foreign Service.”

She mentioned Fatima Baeshan as an exemplary model who is the official spokeswoman of Saudi Embassy in Washington. “I am sure that our girls who organized and participated in DAHMUN will surely be prepared for a career, not just inter-governmental, but in corporation and international companies.”

The ceremony came to an end with Under Secretary of Operations Amal Al Nadvi delivering the closing remarks, leaving the audience spellbound as she quoted one of Mother Teresa’s inspiring quotes that embodied the guidelines for tomorrow’s leaders. She asked the participants to implement learned knowledge in the world and wherever they go.