We are pleased to invite you and your delegation to participate in Columbia University’s Annual High School Model Congress Conference on Saturday, March 1, 2014. Columbia Model Congress is one of Columbia University’s premier competition groups and we annually organize a High School Congressional Simulation for students who believe in being active agents in their communities. The spring conference seeks to bring together high school students from around the United States in a forum where students can debate legislation, negotiate bills and, work constructively on political solutions using proper parliamentary procedures.
We encourage all schools to attend, regardless of the extent of the participants’ experience with these simulations. This year we have planned an extensive outreach initiative to contact more schools and encourage new students to take part in what Columbia Model Congress has to offer. We will soon be posting guidelines for developing debate and competition groups like Model Congress in high schools that currently do not have these teams in place. If you would like to refer other high school teachers or debate teams, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have also introduced new committees that will challenge delegates to think creatively and strategically to reach resolutions. A full list and description of the committees are in our “Committee List” document. Delegates will select their committee from the list and write bills that correspond with the committee topic. Please be advised however that Columbia Model Congress reserves the final decision over student placement. Advisors are asked to fill out the attached registration form with their selections. Registration forms must be completed with full names of delegates and the committees they have elected. Registration forms should be emailed to email@example.com by February 7th, 2014. Earlier registration will be given priority in electing committees. Columbia Model Congress will be confirming committee registration via email before the conference. Committees cannot be changed on the day of the event.
Consolidated checks from each delegation addressed to “Columbia Model Congress” should be postmarked by February 15th, 2014. All checks must include the words “ Columbia University,” as per University procedure. Students are discouraged from sending individual checks by mail. The Conference fee per delegate this year is $40, but registrations made on or before January 31st will receive a $5 discount per delegate.
Attached also is a basic template for all bills. The template is only meant to give a general idea of the required components of the bill; it can be edited to improve the document. Please have each student send his or her bill to ColumbiaModelCongress@gmail.com so that we can screen them for quality and make sure each student is placed in the proper committee. Sending students’ bills by the deadline is a factor will be a criteria We also ask that each student brings 20 PRINTED COPIES of his or her bill to the conference in order make committee sessions run smoothly.
Emailed bills will be considered the final version of the document and will be kept in the committee chair’s file. Once received, bills cannot be changed before the conference. The chairs will examine these emailed bills and select the best written ones for Full House and Full Senate. All bills should be titled “Columbia Model Congress.” Bills addressed to other Model Congress conferences in any part of the document will automatically be rejected for lack of conference preparation. The student delegate must bring 20 copies of their bills on the day of the conference in addition to emailing them by the deadline (February 15th, 2014). No copies can be made by the staff on the day of the conference. Delegates will also not be allowed to leave their committees to make copies.
Registration on March 1, 2014 will begin at 9:00 A.M. on the first floor of Alfred Lerner Hall on Broadway and 115th street, Morningside Heights. The opening ceremony will begin at 10:00 A.M. A small breakfast and full lunch will be provided for all delegates, accompanying advisors and staff. The conference will end at approximately 6:00 pm, following the Closing Ceremony.
Once again, the deadline for registration is February 7, with payment and bill submission due February 15th, 2014. Furthermore, we will be in regular correspondence on our official email address firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions. Columbia Model Congress now has a Facebook page. http://www.facebook.com/ColumbiaModelCongress Both you and your delegates should like the page in order to view helpful documents and updates that we will upload as the conference approaches. Please do not hesitate to contact us.
Lastly, if there are extenuating circumstances which make is difficult for any delegation to meet the deadlines the issue(s) should be communicated via email to email@example.com. We will ask that even if you have issues with the payment deadline please send us the names of attendees (with committees) to ensure placement.
Mailing address for the consolidated checks:
Treasurer, Columbia Model Congress
4266 Lerner Hall
New York, NY 10027
Conference Schedule (subject to alterations):
8:45-10:00 am Registration and Breakfast
10:00-11:00 am Opening Ceremonies with Keynote Speaker
11:00-1:00 pm Committee Session I
1:00-2:00 pm Lunch
2:00-4:00 pm Committee Session II
4:00-5:00 pm Full House/ Full Senate Sessions
5:00-6:00 pm Closing Ceremonies/Awards Ceremony
Please be advised that it is very important that we all adhere to these deadlines and notifications in order to give you and your delegates the best possible Columbia Model Congress experience. We look forward to your delegation’s attendance at our Annual High School Model Congress Simulation on Saturday March 1, 2014.
President, Columbia Model Congress
December 20, 2013