Categories
Uncategorized

St. Michael’s Model United Nations 2014

So yeah, the three day adventure is now over! SM-MUN III came to a fabulous end on Sunday evening.

Most of you know about my special attachment to SM-MUN: I started it two years ago and was its founding President, and was Honored by the school by being appointed the President again this year when SM-MUN went external. The Senate of Pakistan happened for the very first time in an MUN, ever, at SM-MUN this year.

Why did I choose the Senate as a specialized committee for SM-MUN? I wanted all the participants to learn about how laws are made in Pakistan. I wanted to spread political awareness, I wished to educate them all on how this country runs.

Honestly, I had a great time at SM-MUN. I couldn’t have a better person to chair besides me than Waleed, and I mean it. Our ACDs Danish and Arooba, were both really wonderful, and we got some really great help from Jazib and Sarosh. A very special thanks to Sarosh for designing the Party flags for us. I’d also like to acknowledge the volunteers and photographers who were part of our committee, and made our experience just the way it was. I’m really sorry if I couldn’t acknowledge you by mentioning your name directly, the reason being I do not wish to list the names of everyone for the fear of missing out someone.

The entire Senate of Pakistan deserves a shout out for being the best committee in SM-MUN!

Heartiest congratulations to those who won an award:

Umer Kazi, Marvi Ali, Rida Sheikh and Ayla Saeed for winning the Best Delegate award;
Laiba, Anas, Elia, Zain-ul-Abideen and Taha Waqar for securing the Honorary Mentions;
Durran, Usama Hameed and Faiza for the receiving the Special Mentions; and
Hina for the Best Position Paper award.

Now a little on how the awards were decided. Waleed and I took the long and hard decision along with Danish, Arooba and Jazib, and in the presence of Sarosh and two volunteers who had spent the most time in our committee.

I had to fight long and hard with Haris to increase the Best Delegate awards from 2 to 3 and then 4.  We took into consideration the performance of the participants during all the three days, with equal importance given to their performance in the Moderated and Un-moderated Caucuses, the Speakers List and the Diplomacy shown outside the Committee Sessions with Special importance given to their performance in the Crisis. We took our decision in a very transparent and democratic manner, taking into account inputs from everyone member of the dias to eliminate any form of bias or unfairness.

In the end, I’d just say that SM-MUN III was a remarkable experience and would always be treasured piece of memory.

Ahmer Jamil Khan
Chairman of the Senate
President SM-MUN III

Categories
Blog Published

St. Michael’s Inter School Science Competition 2013

St. Michael's Inter School Science Competition 2013 Logo
St. Michael’s Inter School Science Competition 2013

On 12th March 2013, St. Michael’s Convent School held its 2nd Annual St. Michael’s Inter School Science Competition.. This competition was started last year by Mr. Javed Khan, our A Levels Biology teacher. This event aims to create an awareness and interest in the A Levels Biology students about the latest research and development in the fields of medicine and biotechnology. It is indeed a perfect example of learning outside the boundaries of the class room.

The event started off a little later than planned; the opening ceremony featured the National Anthem and our School Song, followed by a recitation of the Holy Qur’an and a reading from the Holy Bible. This was followed by speeches by our Deputy Principal Mrs. Seema Naiyer and Mr. Javed Khan. This was followed by a toss to determine the order of the two rounds. The distinguished judges of the event were: Dr. Manzoor Ali Memon, Dr. Ruhina Hassan and Dr. Nisar Ali Shah.

This year, 4 teams competed in two rounds: Beaconhouse Team Proposition competed against St. Michael’s Team Opposition in the first round, and for the second round, St. Michael’s Team Proposition went against Beaconhouse Team Opposition.

The competition started off with a presentation by the first team, Beaconhouse Team Proposition, followed by a presentation by St. Michael’s Team Opposition which concluded round one of the day. After the short break, we, St. Michael’s Team Proposition opened round two, and were followed by Beaconhouse Team Opposition,

At the end of the day, after a critique over the debates and presentations by Dr. Nisar Ali Shah, the results were announced; they were as following:

  • In the first round: Beaconhouse Team Proposition beat St. Michael’s Team Opposition; and
  • In the second round: St. Michael’s Team Proposition beat Beaconhouse Team Opposition.

The results were announced in the closing ceremony, by Mr. Kevin Lobo, and the shields and medals were awarded to the participants by our respected judges.

Being one of the organizers of the event, and the leading member of the winning team: St. Michael’s Team Proposition, and lifting the trophy while wearing the gold medal at the end of the phenomenal event; I must say, it was a really proud and eventful day for me.

I would especially like to thank our Principal Mr. Peter Misquita, our Deputy Principal Mrs. Seema Naiyer Mr. Javed Khan, Mr. Kevin Lobo, Mr. Irfan Sheikh, our respected judges and the students who helped us all along to make this event a huge success. Last, but not the least, I would like to commend the efforts of all the participants; their efforts were instrumental in this phenomenal success.

Ahmer Jamil Khan

Categories
Blog Tribute

Tribute to Bishop Emeritus Anthony Lobo

Bishop Anthony Lobo

The Founder Principal of St. Michael’s Convent School Bishop Emeritus Anthony Lobo passed away in the early hours of February 18th, 2013. The Bishop was not only the Founder of St. Michael’s Convent School, one of the most prestigious educational institutions in Karachi and in Pakistan, but a key figure in the educational development of Pakistan.

Bishop Lobo made important contributions to education in the country. He was Principal of St. Lawrence’s Boys School, Karachi and later of Saint Patrick’s High School, Karachi.

In November 1986 he founded St. Michael’s Convent School, and served as its Founder Principal.

He was the author of many books on education. In recognition of his services to the cause of literature and education, the then President of Pakistan Ghulam Ishaq Khan conferred on him the President’s “Pride of Performance ” Award in 1990.

The Bishop also served at many other positions, nationally and internationally, serving the cause of education and inter-religious dialogue and peace.

His death is a great loss, not just to the cause of education in Pakistan, but for the people of Pakistan and the world.

Categories
Blog

St. Michael’s Debate Championship 2013

SMDC 2013 Logo

In February 2012, me, along with A Level 2nd year students took the initiative and organized the first St. Michael’s Debate Championship (SMDC), a parliamentary debate championship, based on the Asians format. The event was a great start; 16 teams from prestigious institutions across Karachi participated. The three day journey was an amazing one, it was a great moment for all of the organizers. This great start had to continue and I was tasked with the responsibility to ensure the continuance of the event: a great responsibility, indeed!

The year 2013 had a great start! Before the close of 2012, I had gathered together our team of directors, and divided the responsibilities and tasks to go about and organize the event again in 2013. I became the Chief Director, along with Bilal, Shahrukh became the Director of Volunteers, Mashaal and Uzain, Directors of Logistics, and Usman Farooq became the Director of Volunteers. We decided to host the event in early 2012; the dates were fixed to 11th 12th and 13th of January 2013. The registrations were opened in December 2012, and the deadline was set to be the new year’s eve. We overlooked the fact that schools were closed for the winter vacations, and had to give an extension for the registrations.

Eventually, a greater than the previous year number of teams registered for the event, and we geared ourselves for the time of our lives!

Day 1: Friday, 11th January 2013

The event started according to schedule; on time.To start this grand event, we had organized an awesome opening ceremony: one that began with the National Anthem of Pakistan, and the School Song of St. Michael’s Convent School. This was followed by the recitation from the Holy Qur’an by Ayesha Khan and the Holy Bible by Malachi Bhatti. Proceeding on, the Principal, Mr. Peter Misquita gave a short speech, followed by a speech by the Deputy Principal Mrs. Seema Naiyer and then my short speech, in which I wished the competing teams the best of luck. This was followed by the Principal declaring the event open, and the first motion being announced. That day saw two rounds of debating. The motions that day were: “This house believes that Turkish soaps should be banned”, and “This house will enforce a uniform educational system”. I was also one of the adjudicators for these rounds.

Day 2: Saturday 12th January 2013

The second day started a little late than planed due to the judges amending the schedule at the end of Day 1. The motions for the day were: “This house will levy fines proportional to wealth”, and “This house believes that totalitarian governments are better than democratic governments” (Initially we trolled the participants with the topic: “This house believes that Colgate Miswak should be a toothbrush”, and it worked really well, ALL the participants were trolled!) At the end of Day 2, the for qualifying teams for the Semi Finals in order of their rankings were:

  1. Lyceum A
  2. Lyceum B
  3. Lyceum C
  4. City School A

While the debates were going on, our volunteers made the certificates for the participants and themselves.

Day 3: Sunday 13th January 2013

The last day of the fabulous event started well on time, though there was a strike in the city. The motion for the Semi Finals  was, “This house would legalize performance enhancing drugs in sports”. The team match ups were: Lyceum A vs. Lyceum B and Lyceum C vs. City School A. We had a panel 5 for the second debate; and I was on it as well. At the end of the round, Lyceum A won the debate debate against Lyceum B, and Lyceum C won against City School A on a decision of 3-2.

After the debate, we had a lunch break. After that we announced the motion for the finals, “This house would grant the status of a political party to Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan”; this topic was a really opposition heavy topic, since Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan is waging war against the Pakistan Army in Pakistan, and its Afghan counterpart has been fighting the U.S. Army in Afghanistan; the organization is a notorious, banned, terrorist organization, and granting it the status of a political party is more like supporting their activities. Anyways after the interesting final round of debate, and against all odds team proposition (Lyceum A) lifted the Champion’s trophy and Lyceum B became the Runners Up, and Shazminay Durrani of Lyceum B was awarded the best speaker.

The over all experience was a great one! Organizing SMDC was a mammoth task, but we did it, and not just did it, we did it in the best manner possible!

Categories
Blog Published

How SM-MUN happened!

SM-MUN LogoIn the year 2012, students of St. Michael’s proactively took the initiative to organize and host not one, but two grand events: the first one being the St. Michael’s Debate Championship (SMDC) 2012, in which other institutions and private delegations were invited to compete in cut throat parliamentary debates; and the second one being the St. Michael’s Model United Nations (SM-MUN) 2012, the first MUN to be organized and hosted by our school, in which students from grade 9th onwards, as delegates of different nations around the word debated on haunting issues and tried to solve the world’s problems in a diplomatic manner. Both events were a big success.

On 29th August we submitted written a request to our Deputy Principal Mrs. Naiyer, to be given the permission to organizing the SM-MUN. That very moment Mrs. Naiyer passed a contagious smile and gave us a nod, which was our signal to go ahead with our plans. That day we spread that smile to whoever crossed our way. We discussed our ideas with Mr. Lobo, who encouraged us throughout the planning and preparatory stages, giving us new ideas and refining our own. In a few days it was decided that I was to be the President and Bilal Haider would be the General Secretary of the first St. Michael’s Model United Nations.

We spent the month of September planning on how to go about and organize this, at first seemingly impossible task. We kept our pace and slowly we could see light at the end of the tunnel, we could see a successful event ahead of us. We went through the registration phase where students started enthusiastically registering themselves for their first MUN and selected our volunteers, who played a major part in the success of this event. Mashaal, Swaleha, Owais, Elsa and Hassan agreed to chair.

In October, as soon as the O levels were finished with their assessments, we started the training sessions. It was, for almost all the participants, their first MUN experience. The training sessions were from 7th to 11th October, and gave the participants the training they needed to display extraordinary debating and diplomacy skills at the conference. We also arranged for the lunch for all the participants, and our Principal Mr. Misquita generously decided to sponsor the snacks on all three days.

Friday 12th October was the first day of SM-MUN: The volunteers and organizers had a lot to day that day. After the Friday prayers, as soon as I entered the school, I could see decent, smart, and prim and proper pupil dressed formally for the occasion. We began with the distribution of the packages for delegations which were the folders, pads and pens along with the placards, and the ID cards of all participants in a large paper bag. After this all the delegates were seated in the Auditorium where we started off with our opening ceremony.

The ceremony began with a recitation of the Holy Qur’an and the Holy Bible, followed by speeches by Mrs. Naiyer, Mr. Lobo, the President, and the General Secretary. Finally the Principal Mr. Misquita declared SM-MUN open. As the curtains were drawn on the opening ceremony, we had a tea break. After the break, the delegates moved to the committee rooms, i.e. the Auditorium, Hall 1 and Meeting Room 5, where DISEC, ECOFIN and SOCHUM committees respectively were to be in session. The first day went great, and although immensely tired, we all looked forward to the next day.

Saturday 13th October, day 2 of SMMUN: All the participants were on time, and the committee sessions started as planned. DISEC was shifted to A-Levels Room 1, as there was an orientation in the Auditorium, and Hassan and Owais had an exam that day. Bilal and I had to chair in their place. That day, Mashaal and I had to give a speech at the orientation as well. Everything went well. I designed the certificates and had them printed that day. We had some entertainment sessions during the MUN, as is the tradition in all MUNs. These entertainment sessions provided the much needed break from long serious debating. Overall, all the committees went exceptionally well.

Sunday 14th October, day 3 of SMMUN: The last day went exceptionally well, with crisis situations popping up in the committees, and the committees finally passing their resolutions at the topics at hand. We had finished a little before the planned, and had a long entertainment session in Meeting Room 5 after DISEC raided ECOFIN and DISEC and ECOFIN raided SOCHUM with paper balls! This was followed by a formal lunch, and then the closing ceremony officially drew curtains on the first SM-MUN.

At the closing ceremony, our Deputy Principal Mrs. Naiyer gave a thought provoking speech, this was followed by a closing speech by me, and finally SM-MUN was declared closed. Finally the committee chairs announced the much awaited Best Delegates, Honorary mentions and Special Mentions. The final act of the day was the distribution of the certificates of participation to all the delegates.

That day we all went home with a big smile on our face! We had achieved something big; something we had dreamed of achieving! That day was probably the biggest and the happiest day I could remember of. It was really amazing to see our hard work and efforts shine so beautifully over the course of those three days!

I am really indebted to our volunteers and all our delegates; and I am really thankful to Owais, Mr. Lobo, Mrs. Naiyer and Mr. Misquita for all their support and encouragement.

As I had said in the opening speech on the first day:

    “SM-MUN is all yours; make it or break it, but do your best!”

I was really pleased at the end, that everyone did their best and made our first MUN the best it could be!

 

Ahmer Jamil Khan
President of St. Michael’s Model United Nations
Head Boy of St. Michael’s Convent School

Categories
Published

St. Michael’s Model United Nations

SM-MUN LogoThe importance of debating and public speaking skills are immeasurable. Public speaking and debating are not just skills but an art, which are essential in shaping the personality of an individual. Humans are social; hence expressing oneself is an essential need. How well one expresses them and how well they get their ideas across to the other person and more importantly to a large audience determine the personality of the person. Many students in our school shy away from such opportunities, and this leaves a bad impact on them.

This is the reason why we are organizing St. Michael’s Model United Nations (SM MUN) in our school. The SM MUN is a simulation of the United Nations, where students would represent the member states of the United Nations as their respective countries’ delegates. This event aims at giving our students an insight into this style of debating, and a taste of how the United Nations works. Most importantly, this would give you a chance and a platform to speak up before an audience and an opportunity to discover and polish your speaking skills.

This event would be a great opportunity for many of you to have your first taste of public speaking, and to face your fear of doing so. There are many students who are scared of speaking into the mic or are afraid of a large audience in front of them. Don’t worry neither the mic is going to bite you nor would the crowd lynch you.

Ahmer Jamil KhanA few years ago, even I was scared of speaking into the mic and that too before the large audience. Whenever I was asked to deliver the thought of the day, or gave a speech at a debating competition, I would write a really good speech. But then at the moment of speaking, my pulse would shoot up, breathing became hard, sweating would start, and my hands and legs would tremble. Nothing is impossible, they say, and so eventually I got over my fears. I took the bull by its horns; participated over and over again in the very thing I was really scared of. It took more than a year, but soon afterwards I started enjoying public speaking. I now feel really good speaking into the mic and addressing a crowd has become something natural, something I feel I was made to do.

It is said, “In archeology you uncover the unknown, but in diplomacy you cover the known.” Yes, diplomacy is an art, an art of words, where the diplomat plays with words and sentences, to manipulate the truth, to make the situation favorable to their cause, to create a win-win situation, hiding the ugly truths and presenting beautiful lies as visionary promises.

Over these few days, you would learn not only how to be a good public speaker, but also how to negotiate, how to get your ideas and vision across to a large crowd, and would get a taste of international policy making and politics.

St. Michael’s Model United Nations would now be a part of the school’s annual calendar, and would each year be organized by the A Level 2nd year students. This event is open for all students from class 9 to A Levels. The A Levels batch of 2013 would not only leave the legacy to have organized the first SM MUN, but would also leave behind guidelines for all other batches on how to go about and organize this event in the future.

Ahmer Jamil Khan
President of St. Michael’s Model United Nations
Head Boy of St. Michael’s Convent School

Also published on the website of St. Michael’s Convent School.