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FDRMUN Announces Opening of Chairperson Applications via New Platform Portico


FDRMUN's Applications Management Department cuts the ribbon on

new, best-in-class, applications system Portico.

Chairpersons to apply by the 21st of November, 6:00 PM GMT+2.


BUCHAREST ━ The Franklin D. Roosevelt Model United Nations Applications Management (AM) Department announces a complete overhaul to previous 'pseudo-formal' applications process for chairpersons. The solution presented by AM Head of Department Bianca Ghitulescu was tearing everything down and rebuilding it from the ground up. This ultimately culminated in a new, one-of-a-kind applications framework called Portico.

According to Portico's own guide platform, the Portico Application process for chairpersons includes a "written dialogue" (form) and a "verbal dialogue" (interview). These are very neatly dressed up as Google Forms® and Google Meet® questionnaires, seeming to present as quite banal, but AM's very own Ghitulescu argues otherwise:

"I think it's the biggest change to MUNs in Romania, since MUNs. For decades now, Model UN Conferences at home have been using the same, antiquated applications process for both, chairpersons and delegates alike. I think this acute breakage of the norm is a very ━ well ━ FDR thing to do. [We've] sort of, dressed these very complex processes up as very simple, familiar and approachable to the prospective chairperson. A way we did this was through the very conscious choice of using Meet and Forms, despite my colleagues at IT working on another platform. This is because these platforms are the ones we've found avid [MUNers] to be the most familiar with. We wouldn't want to discourage anyone from applying purely because it looks scary."

Going by the statements released by FDR's Portico, it poses as different in several ways. Instead of guarding marking standards and rubrics behind barbed wire and treating them with the utmost level of secrecy, AM decided to release them for everyone to see. These were released on the 27th of October, a whole three days before the form opened for submissions. This is, according to Bianca, to ensure that the applicant felt "as prepared as everybody else who's applying for this role." This was in a strategic move to ensure no information that somebody with an in may have is valuable, everyone's on the same, level footing. The applicant now knows as much as the assessor.

Another groundbreaking feature of the Portico system is the ability to confidentially report special access arrangements that one may need. This enables assessors to look at an application contextually, and to be able to better accommodate the prospective applicant. And of course, in true FDR fashion, the form and its data handling respects the European Framework for Accessibility.

Source: Portico for FDR "Your guide to applying via Portico" Link

Portico is also Romania's first holistic MUN applications process. This means that the team assessing the applicant will not solely look at the applicant's strengths in one discipline, but will assess the individual based on seven criteria. These are "Open-minded, Risk taker, Communicator, Informed, Caring, Principled and Reflective." The assessors obviously expect variation in how much these strengths are demonstrated, but the applications process is to "balance each individual's profile as to best complement the peers one collaborates with."

These criteria are aptly called the Portico Applicant Profile, here's how the guide presents it:

Source: Portico for FDR "Your guide to applying via Portico" Link

And, as if this range of firsts wasn't enough, Portico is completely free to use for any conference willing to incorporate the scheme into its applications process. Here are AM member, Evelin Iacob's thoughts on the scheme:

"This scheme presents an incredible initiative, one that's underscored by FDR's ethical commitments. This longing for common conference adoption is to facilitate the construction of a new applications standard, one that we consider, is best-in-class considering its backdrop. It'll be available starting the 9th of December for conferences in Romania, and on the 19th for conferences worldwide. There'll be some webinars on the initiative leading up to its public debut, keep your eyes peeled!"

Applications are currently open for participation at FDRMUN as a chairperson. The deadline is on the 21st of November, at 6:00 PM GMT+2. You can read more and apply here.

See you in February for a groundbreaking new edition of FDR.

Edit, 4 Nov: Grammar, clarity and punctuation.


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