We start out the year with an MUN Director Spotlight on Kari Beck, the MUN Director at the American School of Doha.
Name: Kari Detwiler Beck
School: American School of Doha
Number of Years Being an MUN Director: 4
Conferences Attended: As a Director – 7 (THIMUN Q 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, BERMUN 2013 and BEIMUN 2012, 2013);
As a Delegate – 2 (THIMUN – The Hague 1996, 1997)
Idea of a dream vacation: A beach, a book and my baby girl and husband nearby!
Biggest pet peeve: Unmotivated and uninspired students. Find something that inspires and motivates you!
Animal Lover? Yes, dogs. Not a big fan of cats – too much hair, attitude and odor.
Biggest challenge juggling teaching and being and MUN Director: Not being able to give as much as I would like to MUN! I find that most of my “MUN time” is spent orchestrating logistics for conference prep and not diving into the nitty gritty fun stuff that actually matters (like preparing students with appropriate skills and content and debating/discussing the content). I wish I had more time for that.
Three things you wish parents (can I write students?) understood about MUN:
(1) What you say and do, matters. Your ideas/solutions/schemes/plans have value and are in most cases, more daring and outside the box of traditional UN matters.
(2) Your experience now will shape the person you will become. My experience participating in MUN in high school directly led to my decision to study government in college, obtain a masters in international relations and work at the UN and with a humanitarian organization, the International Rescue Committee. Let these experiences shape you and help you figure out what you love.
(3) MUN encompasses all the critical skills a well rounded student should have – strong public speaking; diplomacy, poise and tact; strong content knowledge; ability to strategize, think creatively and thoughtfully and apply what you know from inside the classroom to a setting beyond your school.
Most memorable MUN moment: My senior year of high school, giving the opening speech at the THIMUN General Assembly in The Hague, while representing the Arab League…while coming from an international high school in Israel.
Open Forum: I am excited to teach a new course this year at ASD called Global Politics (modeled after the IB Global Politics), which has so much potential to extend beyond classroom walls and into the work and learning we do in MUN. I think there is great potential to bridge our experiences in the classroom to real life simulations and I’m grateful for the opportunity to lead this at our school.