UNSOC Week 2017: Diversity, Discourse, Relevance!
by Viktor M. Salenius
Hype levels had been skyrocketing for the entire morning, nay, the entire week, as members of the UN Society team could be spotted around campus preparing freebies, blowing up balloons, and practicing their most convincing Ban Ki-Moon facial expressions in the mirror. It was Fresher’s Fair Thursday. Queues were already forming at Saw Swee Hock, and among the many promotion channels we operate, the most impactful may well have been the favourable wind that showered excited fair attendees with runaway flyers and UN flags blowing in over the crowds from our stand located opposite the main entrance.
And the year was indeed off to a flying start, judging by the joyous and warm reception with which we were met at Freshers’ Fair. The #IStandFor -campaign of the UN-Association UK received fantastically engaged entries, over 1300 flyers were dealt out, and questions about upcoming events, conferences, and ways to get involved filled the proximity of our stand with a continuous buzz of chatter – all the way till the closing of the fair.
This joy and excitement only kept increasing as we moved into Week 1 of term – UNSOC week – stacked with an array of events kicking off our activities for the upcoming year.
The game was on immediately, as Monday’s Society-wide Annual General Social presented a variety of UN Society activities, as well as a most competitive pub quiz distinguishing those most savvy in important concepts in international affairs, from Doctors Without Borders to Doctor Watson.
Tuesday afternoon witnessed the infamous dancing floors of the Venue turned into a true diplomacy-arena, as the MUN team hosted a Give-It-A-Go –simulation. North Korean missile tests were hotly debated by the well over 50 delegates eagerly taking on the role of diplomats and airing (at times rather explosive) proposals to secure world peace.
This power-political ambiance returned on Thursday, when Team LSE hosted the first of its weekly MUN training sessions. Also on Thursday, the Outreach division gathered an inspiring group to its first brainstorming meeting, and set out plans for continued awareness-campaigning partnership with the Blue Dragon foundation.
Finally on Friday evening, the week was rounded off with a mingling event for all those interested in joining UN Society divisions. This led into a well-deserved pub-night social where members new and old had a chance to get to know each other – and extend mutual felicitations for surviving the hectic first week of term.
A society exists only for, and only because of its members. Every new face attending an event, every new idea and inspiration that may be born at our panel events and late-night socials… this makes all the difference for us and makes all the fussing and running around so immensely worth it. We are sure other societies will join us in our belief that this is what the start-of-term promotion sprint is all about. It is our utmost responsibility as university clubs to show all students what a diversity of opportunities they have to engage, meet, and discover during their time at LSE. So if we managed to miss you, whether you are a German rocking the General Course or a Fresher from Fiji, get in touch and join us, we would love to have you on board!