Debating Through the Pandemic

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Debating Through the Pandemic

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I've been doing Model United Nations since my freshman year. Although it is a club infamous for the insanely intense students it produces, it's also known for its beyond fun 4-day conferences with food, a delegate dance (like a Homecoming), and chaotic debate sessions. However, COVID changed all of that for me, when all MUN conferences started going virtual, including our school's own conference. We started making speeches on Zoom and raising our virtual hands to get called on. We used Breakout Rooms to talk with other delegates and sat at our desks through four long strenuous days of debating. This story represents the dozens of other school clubs and sports teams that were thrown off guard in trying to alter their events to fit these new guidelines of the pandemic. But, to echo a larger sentiment, it represents how kids and their interests were able to adapt. Students still had safe spaces to pursue their interests, even if it was over Zoom. During this time, communities banded together and in some cases, even expanded, allowing classes of COVID-impacted kids to continue building their passions. In my case, I actually learned to love MUN for what it is, rather than be distracted by its bells and whistles. So, while the pandemic brought along its own challenges, it fostered adaptation at its finest, and relationships centered on keeping a sense of normalcy alive, even with something as small as a school club.

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This item was submitted on July 13, 2022 by Sarah Thomas using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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