Better Know a Staffer: The Under Secretary General of Rapporteurs
Rob Matevich is the 2019 Under Secretary General of Rapporteurs for American Model United Nations (AMUN). Rob got his first taste of Model UN when he was in high school and made the decision to keep going to conferences throughout college. He eventually joined the AMUN Secretariat and moved into a leadership position. He joined the Rapporteur (Rapp) department in 2014 and learned the ropes from Emily Davis, who was the head of the department at the time. He fell in love with the people and the role and has stayed there ever since.
The Rapp department is the content hub of AMUN’s General Assembly and ECOSOC simulations and most representatives interact with this large department. But the Rapp department does more than just check grammar and formatting for resolutions, amendments, and reports. Rapporteurs work with representatives to ensure that all draft resolutions are within the purview of the committee. If a draft resolution is not fully in purview, Rapps will take a collaborative role with representatives to ensure that a draft resolution is supported and in purview.
Rob and the Deputy Directors train the department on how to ensure that all draft resolutions and reports are in line with AMUN standards and the standards of the United Nations. He also coaches the rapporteurs to help create a positive educational experience for all representatives. He does an excellent job training staff and is quite proud of them. Seeing the Rapp department members performing their jobs without his direct help is his favorite part of AMUN.
While his dentist thinks he works for the actual United Nations, outside of AMUN, Rob works for a non-profit focusing on healthcare. He enjoys playing video games, hanging out with his friends and not having to wear a suit everyday. If he wasn’t doing AMUN he has absolutely no idea what he would be doing with all his extra time. He thinks he might sleep more and might use his vacation days to go on an actual vacation. But, the AMUN Secretariat is his second family and he keeps coming back year after year to greet old friends and meet new ones.
Q: Why did you get into Model United Nations?
A: “I started in high school and really enjoyed it. I continued in college and met some really cool people and kept going”
Q: What would you be doing if you weren’t doing AMUN?
A: “No idea, sleeping a lot more. Actually taking a vacation”
Q: What do you do when you’re not doing AMUN?
A: “I work for a healthcare nonprofit and I enjoy playing video games and seeing my friends. I also do not wear a suit, but I’ll take wearing a vest anyday. I also don’t pay that much attention to grammar.”
Q: Weirdest way to explain AMUN
A: “LARPing but in suits”
Q: Have you been in any other departments?
A: “I’ve only been in rapp.”
Q: What at conference department would you like to join next?
A: “I originally wanted to be a rules person, so I think I may like Security Council. I think it would be the best of both worlds, being a Chair and a Rapp that is. Home Government also sounds like it would be fun.”
Q: Why the Rapp department?
A: “ I just fell in love with it. Emily Davis was the head of the department and she showed me the ropes. I knew then that I wanted to move into leadership.”
Q: What experience as a Rapp sticks out the most to you?
A: “A representative figured out how to walk the line of purview and of the rapp department was trying to help the representative go back into purview to help facilitate debate. It sticks out to me because my involvement was trying to figure out what was going on.”
Q: Was that representative given a staff app?
A: “Yes, but they didn’t join staff.”
Q: What is your favorite AMUN abbreviation?
A: “Mine, USGRAPP. It’s complicated but fun to say.”
Q: What is the strangest thing you’ve seen in a resolution?
A: “ It was a disruptive resolution. About building a space elevator.”
Interviewer: “Is this where I tell you that was me?”
A: “I cannot say I’m surprised.”
Q: What does the Rapp department do?
A: “ We are the context house working to ensure all docs produced are in-line with our standards and the UN standards.”
Q: What Rapp secrets can you tell me?
A: “Oh, we don’t have any.”
Q: What have you learned from working as a Rapp do you see in your personal life?
A: “I’m better with grammar and editing. I’ve also become more organized and I have stronger leadership skills.”
Q: What life lessons have you learned from AMUN or being a Rapp?
A: “How to make positive sleep and drink choices.”
Q: Why do you still do AMUN?
A: “The people. This is my second family and I enjoy meeting all the new people every year.”
Q: What is your favorite Rapp department tradition?
A: “At LD, the last hour is a relaxing wind down game. It’s a good way to end the weekend as the trainings tend to be more lecture based.”
Q: What do you people not know about the Rapp department?
A: “We are more than just grammar people and we aren’t all grammar snobs. Most of us don’t care about the OXford comma. You use whatever comma you want. I like the Oxford comma but as long as I know what you’re using and what you mean, I’m good.”
Q: What do you wish everyone knew about the Rapp department?
A: “We may not sit as high up as them, but we are just as important as the Chairs.”
Q: What’s the most proud you’ve been of yourself on leadership?
A: “ When I see all of my staff being able to do their jobs and not need me, that is when I am the most proud.”
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