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Manchester High School for Girls

MHSG TEAM WINS TOP PRIZE AT A LEADING STUDENT CONFERENCE

A group of Sixth Formers from Manchester High School for Girls has beaten stiff competition from over 400 students by winning the ‘Outstanding Delegation’ award at one of the country’s largest Model United Nations (MUN) student conferences.

Held at Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School in Hertfordshire from 16th to 18th March, ‘HABSMUN’ simulated a real United Nations meeting, and saw delegates from 32 schools represent different countries and debate pressing issues from youth mental health to cyber security.

Prestwich based Nawya Sarwal won a 'Best Delegate' award and Roni Altman achieved a 'Distinguished Delegate' prize.

Each Manchester High student also came away with an individual award, as Navya Sarwal (17) from Prestwich explained: “I am really proud of our ‘Outstanding Delegation’ award and how we performed as a team. I was also delighted to win a ‘Best Delegate’ prize as I’ve been involved with Model United Nations for three years. I now understand so much more about why countries make certain policies, and my overall awareness of what is going on in the world has vastly improved.

“I have been assigned to represent countries such as Iran on women’s rights issues and it’s easy to get frustrated when policies don’t always match your own personal opinion. MUN and the research that is required into each country’s background has, however, helped me realise that there are many different viewpoints to an argument.”

Alexandra Thacker and Sophie Xu-Tang celebrate their achievements at 'HABSMUN' with a 'Highly Commended Delegate'' and a 'Distinguished Delegate' respectively.

18-year-old Alexandra Thacker from Didsbury added: “This was my final conference with MHSG and winning the top award, as well as a ‘Highly Commended’ prize, is really the pinnacle of years of participation in this incredible extra-curricular activity.

“Without doubt, MUN has allowed me to explore the diversity of opinions that exists out there in the wider world. I hope to study European Social and Political Studies at UCL or Modern Foreign Languages at the University of Oxford, and I am confident that the valuable negotiation and communication skills I have learned through MUN will be hugely beneficial in my further study and beyond as I intend to pursue a career in international relations. I am indebted to MUN in helping me become the confident and enquiring person I am proud to be today.”

Alexandra Darby and Huma Siddiqi both achieved a 'Highly commended' award on top of their team award.

Model United Nations is a popular extra-curricular activity at Manchester High; students from Year 9 to Senior Sixth Form take part in weekly meetings and regularly attend conferences such as ‘HABSMUN’. The school held its first international MUNHIGH conference in January with over 300 students in attendance.

Jacinta Heydecker, MUN co-ordinator and History teacher at Manchester High School for Girls, was full of praise for the girls, as she commented:

“The team from Manchester High represented Japan at the conference and extolled all the fantastic skills that MUN develops. Passionate about the issues and self-reliant in their preparation, the team rose to every challenge thrown at them and richly deserved both their individual awards and their top prize.

“As a team, they revelled in the excitement of high-level debating and the chance to promote solutions to some of the most complicated problems facing the international community today. Their success is a real testament to the hard work and dedication they all put into MUN, and I congratulate them all.”

Manchester High School for Girls is currently welcoming applications to its Sixth Form for the 2018/19 academic year. For more information, please visit www.manchesterhigh.co.uk.