Loyola Model UN Gears Up For a Busy Second Semester, With a New Moderator


Photo via Wikimedia commons

In person conferences, such as the one seen here, aren’t able to happen this spring, but LAMUN is still gearing up for a busy season.

Caleigh Keating, Editorial Staff

Mr. Ceplecha had been hoping to get more involved at Loyola, but he didn’t expect to find an opportunity like this.

Mr. Ceplecha has just become the new moderator for Loyola’s Model UN, taking charge of a club that, until last week, had no leader for the second semester. This comes after the usual moderator, Mr. Masello, decided to temporarily step back from the club due to familial obligations. A packed semester awaits Mr. Ceplecha and the club, with two competitive conferences already planned as well as countless ambitious meetings.

Starting something new always presents its challenges, but Mr. Ceplecha is confident the transition will be smooth with the help of a dedicated group of students, saying “I know I am moderating an inquisitive, hard-working group of students that will make this transition seamless”.

Mr. Ceplecha took over for Mr. Masello as the moderator for the second semester last week after Mr. Masello announced he would not be able to fulfill his duties to the club this semester, as he became a new parent recently. While students are bummed Mr. Masello won’t be able to lead the club this semester, they are excited for what the new change will bring, with

junior Madeline Wild saying “it’s nice to have someone who is willing to take the time to proctor us, even if he doesn’t have much experience”.

Model UN has a lot to look forward to this semester, with upcoming conferences being the highlight. The club is planning to participate in at least two conferences this semester and will begin preparations shortly for the first one, which is being held on Zoom by Lyons Township High School at the end of February. While the switch of conferences this year from in-person to Zoom has been a strange change to navigate, club members have handled it well, still aiming to solve issues, win awards, public speaking skills, and collaborate with others with as much zest as before.

Improving public speaking skills and current events knowledge will be a big focus at meetings this semester, with many students especially looking to improve on speaking over Zoom. Mr. Ceplecha is aiming to make public speaking exercises a staple at meetings with weekly exercises. He is hoping to start each meeting with an interactive, skill-based, and light- hearted activity that can both improve skills and help bond the club. “I value any activity that builds community and allows everyone to feel comfortable with one another,” he said.

These activities have already become a hit with students after just one meeting. This week’s exercise, which posed the question “What belongs on Pizza?” to students, sparked a lively and enthusiastic debate that got many students involved and practicing their skills while advocating for their opinion. These activities seem like they will almost certainly become a favorite among students, giving them a chance to improve their skills and collaborate with other members over a fun topic.

This year of Model UN has certainly brought its unique challenges, but students are looking forward to the new semester with excitement and optimism. This optimism stems not only from the events and meetings ahead but the addition of Mr. Ceplecha as well. “It’s some fresh air to the club,” remarked Madeline Wild.