Dear Delegates and Staff Advisors,
On behalf of the SOMA Secretariat, it is my greatest pleasure to extend a warm invitation to you to attend the forty-sixth annual Southern Ontario Model United Nations Assembly on April 18 to April 20th. SOMA is traditionally hosted at the University of Toronto’s St.George Campus, and since its inception in 1972, has become one of North America’s oldest, largest, and most prestigious secondary-school level Model United Nations conferences.
In my first week running Secretariat, I was overwhelmed with the history behind SOMA, and looked through forty-six years of our archives to understand how the SOMA experience stretched beyond the three days of committee. Amidst the searching, I found a letter from the eighth Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, addressed to SOMA, almost a decade ago. The word “model” has several meanings; in the context of the model United Nations it is commonly understood as “a small copy.” But former Secretariat Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon gave us another definition: a praiseworthy example to be copied.”
With more than 600 delegates in attendance annually, SOMA strives to embody the values and mandates of the United Nations: diplomacy, cooperation, and peaceful problem solving, achieved through rich discussion. In addition to the General Assembly, SOMA will feature a variety of regional gatherings, small councils, and special committees, selected to provide delegates with a wide range of topics to debate. One Historical Crisis will be offered.
This year, SOMA is dedicated providing you the best delegate experience, with additions including a pre-committee training sessions for new delegates, and an after committee dance organized on the second day. Each of our chairs carry with them several years of previous experience at SOMA; each of our staff share an enthusiasm and belief for the educational experiences to carry beyond the committee room. Only when our delegates bring their unique pieces of SOMA outside the conference, the meaning of the word model transforms.