Harvard Model Congress Europe

Friday, April 12, 2019 - By: Evan L, Ellis '20

Over Spring Break a group of twelve students, accompanied by Mr. Bryant and Ms. Steele-MacInnis, had the opportunity to go to Madrid to compete and participate in the 39th annual Harvard Model Congress Europe. An event founded in 1987, Harvard Model Congress Europe (HMCE) is a government simulation conference run exclusively by undergraduates at Harvard College. The premier US and international government simulation in the world, HMCE empowers students to think critically about government, civic engagement, and leadership. Students from Brentwood partook in committees ranging from the Supreme Court, House Intelligence, Senate Judiciary, and the National Security Council. 

Through active simulation of debates, caucuses, trials, press conferences, and testimonies, we stepped into the role of modern legislators, policymakers, diplomats, and more to grapple with 21st century issues affecting our world including, but not limited to, the transparency and autonomy of the CIA, the US response to the crisis in South Sudan, and prison reform. In the few hours when we were not in session, our group explored the fantastic city of Madrid and its many tourist and historical sites; such as the Royal Palace, the Prado and the Plaza Mayor. Over the four days of the conference, we became friends with other politically minded students from countries such as Greece, France and India. 

The event also allowed us to gain a deeper insight into the university application process, as the Harvard undergraduate students running our committees answered many important questions regarding college life and how to properly prepare to apply to universities in the United States. Reflecting on the experience, I can speak on behalf of everyone that it was undeniably a once-in-a-lifetime experience that we will all remember. As a group of high school teens, we were incredibly fortunate to have been able to partake in an event of such prestige and scale. Hopefully, future Brentwood students can return to one of the Harvard Model Congress Conferences held around the world to reinforce the positive impression Brentwood students left behind in Spain. 

Our debate teachers were delighted to learn that Brentwood delegates received a total of seven awards during the closing ceremony:

Evan L: Best Delegate (House Intelligence)

Amelia H: Honourable Mention (Senate Judiciary)

Didi On: Honourable Mention (Supreme Court)

Jayden J: Best Delegate (United Nations Children’s Fund)

Lisa M: Honourable Mention (Presidential Cabinet)

Janessa P: Honourable Mention (United Nations Children’s Fund)

Eamon R: Best Delegate (Senate Health, Eduction, Labour, & Pensions)

Evan L, Ellis '20

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