For a brief introduction to our association visit our homepage by clicking here. Here we will explain who we are, going through our organisations make up and it's structure; what we do, giving you a detailed look into our trainings, social activities, MUN conference attendance and more; and lastly why we do it, explaining our organisations values and why you might want to become a member yourself.
WHO WE ARE
KULMUN was founded by a group of highly motivated students with a passion for debate and international politics in 2010. Over the past 10 years we have cultivated a reputation for professionalism and quality.
Our Mission Statement
We believe in connecting people of diverse backgrounds through debate and joint growth, using Model united nations as a means to these goals.
What is KULMUN?
The KU Leuven Model United Nations Student association focuses on attending and organizing Model United Nations activities (To find out what an MUN is click here). As well as this we provide weekly training activities on various skills including public speaking, debate, negotiation, improvisation and much more.
We also put a healthy emphasis on connecting our members and those participating in KULMUN activities through a variety of social events including weekly get togethers, parties, barbecues among other activities.
KULMUN prides itself in delivering a balanced student experience with plenty of opportunities to greatly expand their professional opportunities through our excellent training activities and participation in MUN conferences; as well as a chance to meet life long friends and to engage in a truly international community.
KULMUN is made up of 50 students from a very wide range of backgrounds, nationalities, studies and political views. We have members who study history, law, engineering, languages, philosophy and several other programs. We have persons with political views ranging from liberal to conservative and everything in between, and all keep an open mind to varied opinions, learning and changing their views from each other or agreeing to disagree and accepting each other for who they are. We believe that the success of our group dynamic is owed to this diversity.
We have members with a wide range of MUN experience, from people who have attended 5 or more conferences and many members who have never been to a single MUN when they first began.
We have decided to limit the number of members in our association to 50 as we believe this allows everyone within the group to fully get to know one another while also keeping the group large enough to foster this diversity and keep the group interesting.
To learn how to become a member click here.
Among the 50 members of the association there are 8 Executive Board members. Each of them have their own set of responsibilities but always work closely together on all tasks. These members are responsible for organizing training's, managing money, raising funds, organizing the conference, handling PR and much more. To meet our Executive Board click here. The Executive Board is elected each year at the KULMUN general assembly where all members gather to see the state of KULMUN as an organisation and see how funding has been used. Members also have the opportunity to ask questions and comment on the way the organisation has been run. Here the members elect the new members of the Executive Board.
Above the Executive Board is the governing board who are made up of KULMUN alumni who are also elected at the general assembly. They are responsible for creating the long term vision for the organisation and guiding the Executive Board. To meet our governing board click here.
WHAT WE DO
KULMUN hosts a variety of open events as well as member exclusive events. These range from weekly MUN trainings for our members, seminars with a variety of guest speakers, socials, a number of other special events and most importantly we host Belgium's most reputable MUN conference open to anyone from the public.
Weekly MUN Training For
Every Tuesday evening KULMUN hosts training sessions to hone a variety of our members' soft skills. Examples of training' from 2019 include but were not limited to:
Public speaking trainings: This included work on body language, methods to improve speech flow and practicing improvisational skills.
Negotiation trainings: This training was conducted with our partner from LCM. This involved a seminar discussing tactics for effective negotiation as well as a practice test case where two members could put these theories to the test.
Mock MUNs: This training was conducted in cooperation with the VUB where a mock mini MUN conference was held on the topic of legislation on Private Military Companies.
And much more: Other trainings throughout the year included rules of procedure trainings, resolution writing and many more.
Each year KULMUN aims to have a number of seminars held by various guest lecturers. Last year KULMUN had several interesting guests including the head of Belgium's delegation to the UN security council Werner Bauwens. As well as this we had a KULMUN alumni speak to us about her job at the Belgium office of foreign affairs. Some of these seminars are exclusive for our members but we do host a number of open seminars as well.
What is it:
The members' weekend is an annual event where members take the weekend to partake in a variety of activities. These included: team building exercises, and a 2 day long mini-MUN to practice their skills in debate, public speaking, negotiation and their understanding of the rules of procedure. Most importantly however this weekend is used for members to get to know each other and bond to create a healthy group dynamic.
What it looks like:
In 2018's edition of KULMUN's members' weekend our mini MUN was split into two committees, NATO and the the UN Human Right Council discussing the issue of cyber security and ending the use of child soldiers respectively. In addition a number of team building exercises were held and of course a great party at the end of each night. (Disclaimer: KULMUN does not require it's members to partake in hazing or any baptism rituals.)
Throughout the year KULMUN organizes a number of great social events for its members. We believe in providing a balanced student experience for our members and so an excellent social environment is a key component to the success of our association.
These events include the KULMUN annual barbecue, Christmas party, cantus (a very Belgian tradition) and several more parties and get-togethers. As well as this we traditionally go for drinks all together after our weekly training to the Irish pub or Down Town Jacks.
Keeping a balanced student organisation:
These social events are of course very important to fostering a good working dynamic between our members and also to help members connect with interesting people. It is also key in maintaining a well balanced student organisation. KULMUN has a very good reputation of having a warm atmosphere and strong connections between members, strong enough for us to have two married couples that met through our association! (congratulations to you guys if you're reading this)
Sending Delegations to
Participating in conferences across the world:
We send a number of delegations to conferences across Europe and beyond. Our members may choose which conferences to attend, it is of course not mandatory to attend all conferences that we send delegations to. We organize the logistics for our members and reduce costs through delegation discounts given by many conferences and, when we can, through seeking funding from the University of Leuven. We ensure our delegates are as prepared as they can be through our weekly MUN training as well as conference specific training (for the Harvard WORLDMUN we have an extra set of weekly training sessions due to its competitive nature.)
Where we go:
Conferences we send delegations to include but are not limited to:
OxiMUN: Oxford universities annual MUN
BiMUN: hosted by Bonn university in Germany
ReadiMUN: hosted by Reading in the UK
TICS: in Cologne Germany
The Harvard worldmun: worldmun2020 will be hosted in Japan.
It is important to note that we cannot guarantee that we will send delegations to all of these conferences, aside from conferences like BiMUN, ReadiMUN and TICS. Which conferences we send delegations to will depend on member interest.
Belgium's best MUN conference:
Every year we host Belgium's most prestigious and well known model united nations conference, open to anyone from the public. The job of leading the preparation and execution of our conference falls onto the conference and vice conference managers, Alexander Pessers and Sofie Haljan. Our other executive board members are also very involved in assisting our conference managers in making the KULMUN conference a success.
Open to anyone:
Of course our conference is open to both members and non members, to find our more information about our conference click here.
WHY WE DO IT
With such a wide range of people there is an equally wide range of reasons our members partake in KULMUN. No matter your goals or aspirations, KULMUN has something for everyone and that can be seen by the wide range of reason's our members participate in KULMUN.
A Passion For Debate
and Getting Involved
With International Issues
Many of our members simply partake in KULMUN for their passion for debate and international issues and what better way to engage in these interests than through model united nations.
As we engage with so many current issues that the united nations themselves are tackling, we provide a place for people to gain in depth knowledge of these issues and the tools to engage with them, such as public speaking , debating and negotiation skills.
There is no doubt that KULMUN is the best association for people with this passion.
Laying the Foundation
For Our Career
Helping our members no matter their aspirations:
Whether our members have aspirations for a career in engineering, law, international politics, business, languages or anything else, they see KULMUN as an essential part of building up to these aspirations.
Developing a wide range of skills:
The skills that we work to build are relevant in any field of study and any modern day work environment. In today's job market employers are putting increasing emphasis on soft skills such as leadership, communication skills, mediation, adaptability and so on. KULMUN works to improve all of these skills. Our activities stretch participants communication skills when lobbying during informal sessions, their initiative and leadership skills when leading a bloc during debate, their adaptability when asking participants to quickly learn a new and complex topic quickly and to adopt a perspective to debate from that is not their own and so much more.
KULMUN is an excellent launching point for any career, and proves to employers that you are willing and able to extend your skills beyond your study.
A place to meet friends and make connections:
Many of our members, along with the previously mentioned reasons, participate in KULMUN for the people who make up the association. KULMUN has had a reputation for creating strong bonds between members and to us that is an important aspect of our association.
Keeping a delicate balance:
Especially among other MUN associations around Europe KULMUN is known for its atmosphere where a delicate balance of professionalism and enjoying the moment is maintained.
It is a mistake of many MUN associations to become too competitive hence losing the other and equally important components of a good student organisation. Here in KULMUN we believe we have found an excellent balance.