About Us


Our Vision

           Raise Your Placard strives to use the power of Model United Nations to teach underprivileged students about international relations, public speaking, and research skills. Model UN is a debate based competitive activity that requires students to represent the viewpoints of an assigned nation and debate aspects of an assigned issue. Model UN produces global minded individuals preparing them for the world with both the ability to skillfully speak in front of their peers and the ability to understand the issues shaping their environment. By developing such skills, students will have gained the tools to fight for positive changes whether it be on a global scale or in their own communities.
           Raise Your Placard (RYP) was the product of years of frustration over misrepresentation within the Model UN community. Schools with limited budgets were unable to attend as many conferences as stronger programs could. With few opportunities to compete, these underfunded programs would decline and the more advanced elements of Model UN would become inaccessible.
           RYP works extensively with our partnering schools to build Model UN programs, promoting both the activity and its values throughout New York City. In targeting underserved communities, RYP hopes to teach students valuable life skills which will aid them in any career they seek. RYP does this through a multi-faceted curriculum, which covers both Model UN strategy and pressing geopolitical issues. 
           Raise Your Placard was established to help younger students figure out their place in the world and empower them to realize the power behind their voice. By mentoring middle schoolers about the procedures and conventions behind Model UN, as well as discussing international political issues, the UN, and even academics and preparation for high school, we hope to give students the opportunity to succeed despite the barriers of socioeconomic disparity.

What We Do

From beginning to end, the Raise Your Placard Team will work hand-in-hand with its partnering schools to establish strong Model UN programs. Beyond Model UN, however, Raise Your Placard works to create long-lasting networks of support for its participating students.



When working with its partnering schools to build Model UN programs, Raise Your Placard will operate as a supplement for these programs to learn about the ins and outs of the activity. Through simulations, drills, and engaging presentations on the mechanics of Model UN, Raise Your Placard will take its partnering schools to the point of self-sufficiency, where their programs can flourish without intervention. Members of the Raise Your Placard Team will work on-site with their partnering schools, allowing participating students to learn from experienced delegates.

Jack Tapay

Founding  Member

Jack joined his high school’s Model UN team in the ninth grade and quickly fell in love with the activity. Throughout the last three years, he has traveled from conference to conference learning much about the idiosyncrasies of the MUN community and a plethora of geopolitical issues. As a Media Associate for Best Delegate and the Secretary-General of the Bronx Science Model UN team, Jack hopes that Raise Your Placard will bring up a new generation of MUNers. In his free time, Jack enjoys playing tennis, video-editing, and binging Parks and Rec! Next year, Jack will attend the American University.

Lillian Tzanev

Founding  Member

Lillian joined the Bronx Science Model UN Team in her sophomore year, learning much about leadership and geopolitical issues. Lillian is currently a member of the Green Team and volunteers at the human rights non-profit, WITNESS. She loves The Office, baking, and poetry. Lillian found her niche in Model UN, developing an interest in international law. Since then she has made it her life's goal to pursue a more peaceful global community. In conducting outreach for Raise Your Placard, she hopes to give back as much as she has gained from the Model UN community. Next year, Lillian will attend the University of Richmond.

Krish Shah 

Head Director 

Krish is a senior at The Bronx High School of Science, and serves as the Secretary General of the Bronx Science Model UN team. Through Model UN he has learned about building consensus with his peers during discussions. Model UN has taught him about leadership and international affairs. Outside of Model UN, Krish is heavily involved in his school's Student Organization, serving as an executive for the school T.V. show, WTV, and a member of the Judicial Board. During his free time he enjoys playing soccer and listening to the latest music. 

Anthony Bonavita

Founding  Member

Anthony has participated in student government as a cabinet member and the recently-elected S.O. President, and has observed the amount of hard work, grit and leadership it takes to be a leader in the world today. He has spent three years in Model UN, where he has learned valuable lessons about working together and getting his voice heard and understood. On his off time he enjoys writing screenplays for movies, theatre, and playing guitar. Next year, Anthony will attend the Georgetown University. 

Omar Darwish 

Logistical Director

Omar is currently a junior at The Bronx High School of Science. He was first introduced to Model UN in 8th grade, and immediately loved the activity. He is now a member of the Bronx Science Model UN team, serving as the secretary of administration. With much love for international relations and debate, he consistently travels to conferences to further expand his knowledge of political science and geopolitical issues. He is also a member of HOSA at Bronx Science. In his free time he enjoys playing soccer and watching Avatar the Last Airbender. 

Jachym Harwood

Founding  Member

Jachym started Model UN in the seventh grade and knows the impact that thinking about international affairs can have on youth. While pursuing a path in STEM, Jachym enjoys learning about history and philosophy, tying in nicely with his experiences in MUN. While not at a conference or school, Jachym enjoys to play guitar, ski, and bike. Next year, Jachym will attend Columbia University.


Meet Our Team

Raise Your Placard was founded by four members of the Bronx Science Model UN Team. With a commitment to quality mentorship, the Raise Your Placard Team has extensive experience in both national and local conferences. 

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Raise Your Placard is a volunteer organization founded by members of the Bronx Science Model United Nations Team.