The 2021 Crisis Staff

head of crisis

samuel hodman

Samuel Hodman is a second year student at Sciences Po Campus de Menton and an American national. Samuel is excited to expand on his Model Congress and MUN experience by stepping into the role of Crisis Director for the 2021 Conference. When it comes to MEDMUN, he is passionate about how politics, warfare, and developmental economics are evolving - both globally, and more specifically in the Middle East (obviously.) He hopes to make this year’s crisis experience immersive in all these fields, and encourages delegates to put their machiavellian minds to work!  

Samuel believes that, even if limited, Crisis is an excellent way to bring the complexities and dynamic nature of MENA issues - in the world of the past, present, or future - to a more understandable, more human scale. With MEDMUN 2021, he hopes to make the best of this opportunity, and immerse this year’s delegates in a truly unique experience! He wants to challenge his delegates and staff researchers to deeply understand each crisis on the human scale, and tactfully imagine the consequences of every action. Above all, he hopes to make each crisis personal and informative, so that MEDMUN 2021 can be enriching for everyone. Samuel looks forward to diving into the world of the past and the far future with you at MEDMUN 2021! 


maxim karkutli

Maxim Karkutli is a second year student at Sciences Po Paris, Campus de Menton. Born in Jerusalem, he also lived in Jakarta, Sidney, Berlin, Washington DC and Brussels. After being a delegate at the BRUMUN in 11th Grade, he co-organised a mini-MUN at his school in 12th Grade as Secretary-General, and was part of the MEDMUN Crisis team last year, but sadly his excellent work on the ‘Second Punic War’ could not come to fruition due to a global pandemic. Being of German and Syrian descent, and having witnessed several political dilemmas throughout his life, he experienced MUN as an eye-opening event on possible ways to solve crises all over the world. He is very excited to be a Crisis Staffer for this year’s MEDMUN and hopes to provide the best experience possible to all attending!

Vanessa Wedick

Vanessa is a Canadian second year student in the Dual BA between Sciences Po, Campus de Menton and the University of British Columbia. Born in Vietnam and having lived in the United Arab Emirates, Spain, India and Canada, she has had the privilege of experiencing numerous diverse cultures which has helped develop her keen interest in global affairs and the MENA region. Participating in MedMUN last year and having done eleven previous conferences across Canada, Model UN and crisis hold a special place in her heart. Some of her best high school memories are from crisis committees that allowed her to think unconventionally, strategically and enjoy fruitful debate. Vanessa hopes to recreate this experience for MedMUN delegates this year.

Laura Fairlamb

Laura is an American second year student at Sciences Po Paris, Campus de Menton in the Dual BA with Columbia University. She is currently pursuing a major in Politics and Government at Sciences Po and plans to major in Human Rights when she moves to New York next year. In Menton, she is particularly passionate about tying her studies to action by volunteering with refugees and advocating for their rights. Outside of class, she enjoys sharing meals with friends, playing soccer, and soaking up the sun at Sablettes. Laura's MUN experience comes from her role as a crisis staffer for MEDMUN 2020 and her work prior to Sciences Po as the Secretary General of her High School MUN club where she participated in local conferences as well as those in Venice, Italy and Querétaro, Mexico. Laura is forever grateful to MUN for introducing her to the world of International Relations. She looks forward to sharing this love through her role as a Crisis Staffer.

Tuna Dinçer

Tuna Dinçer is a second-year student at Sciences Po, Campus de Menton. He is majoring in Political Humanities and he comes from Izmir, Turkey. He is fascinated by history, languages, and people, especially those of the Mediterranean, and of course, its crises. Having grown up in Western Turkey, right by the sea, he defines the Mediterranean as his home. A home full of conflicts, indeed. He, nevertheless, is eager to solve the problems of the delegates, -or create new crises for them- and to ensure a successful and fun debate. He hopes to make MEDMUN 2021 enjoyable and memorable for everyone-in a time we need enjoyable and memorable experiences more than ever.

angelina gutierrez

Angelina Gutierrez is a second year, Swiss-Costa Rican student studying economics at Sciences Po Paris, campus of Menton. Born in Venezuela and later moving to Costa Rica where she attended the French Lycée in San Jose, she considers these two countries to be central to her identity, alongside Switzerland, of course. When not in class, Angelina can be found coheading the campus environmental association, swimming in the sea and enjoying the great outdoors. She’s passionate about the MENA region, especially as it relates to economics, politics or the environment. Fluent in French, Spanish and English, but always eager to try something new,  Angelina is working on her Arabic and Italian to better immerse herself in the Mediterrenean culture. She’s very excited to participate for a second year as a crisis staffer in this amazing MEDMUN 2021 experience!

zaidie long

Zaidie Long is in her second year at the Menton campus of SciencesPo Paris and is part of a dual degree program with the University of California, Berkeley. While she has participated in MUN in the past, she is excited to be part of the Crisis team for the first time this year. From Portland, Oregon in the United States, Zaidie also lived in Taiwan for a year, where she built friendships with students from all over the world, and hopes that MEDMUN can be an opportunity for participants to do the same. Zaidie is interested in international relations, environmental economics and policy, as well conflict and behavior, and has considered pursuing a career in diplomacy, although she is glad she has a few more years to think about it. She has been interested in the Mediterannean and Middle East in international politics since high school, although it was often overlooked in her classes in the US, and she wishes she’d been able to attend an event like MEDMUN at that time. She hopes that, through reflecting real world dynamics in embellished Crisis scenarios, delegates can gain a better understanding of the politics of the region, of negotiation and diplomacy in general, and build skills that will be applicable no matter the career they decide to pursue.

Beltran fıeld

Beltrán is a third year exchange student from the University of Edinburgh, studying History and Politics. Born and raised in London, his interest in international politics was sparked by the conflict of identities he felt as a half-Spanish Londoner in a dis-United Kingdom torn apart by Brexit, and he seeks to further understand how others reconcile clashing nationalities in an ever changing and increasingly divided world. Having never had the time to be able to join MUN prior to this year, he looks forward to discovering more about the intricacies and protocols of the conference, and he hopes to be able to put his knowledge to good use to craft challenging and exciting scenarios to give delegates the best chance to show off their skills.

alicia barker-astrom

Alicia Barker-Åström is a first-year student at Sciences Po Campus de Menton in the dual BA program with University of British Columbia. She grew up in Stockholm, Sweden but has lived in eSwatini for the past two years where she completed her IB diploma. Alicia is interested in international relations, specifically the power dynamics that exist between various countries and how they affect their interactions with each other. She has participated in the European Youth Parliament as a delegate as well as led various projects focusing on youth empowerment in eSwatini, the main one being working with establishing a youth center together with a local community. Being a crisis staffer for MEDMUN is her first MUN experience and she hopes to make it a challenging but rewarding experience for the delegates and is excited to engage with the various ideas, perspectives and solutions that are brought up!

benjamin vitenson

gabrielle hodes

Benjamin Vitenson is a first-year student at SciencesPo, as a part of the Dual BA with Columbia University. Benjamin was born to an Austrian mother and Israeli father in Connecticut and now lives in North Carolina. He has always had a strong interest in the middle east because of his upbringing and activism. Being specifically interested in activism and civic engagement he founded and led a branch of Amnesty International in his hometown and helping lead teen justice deferral programs at his local courthouse. He is excited to explore international relations with a fun and creative debate this year at MEDMUN. 

Gabrielle Hodes, or as most people know her, Gigi, is a first-year student in Menton and is currently enrolled in the Dual BA program with Columbia University. She was born in Manhattan, New York, and lived there until she was 10, when she and her family moved on a sailboat and spent almost two years sailing around the Caribbean, finally settling in Panama. She lived there for seven years before coming to France for her university studies. MUN has been a passion of hers for the last four years, and she has participated in ten conferences in places like Buenos Aires, The Hague, Cartagena, and now, the Mediterranean. Apart from MUN, she enjoys dancing, reading, and hanging out with friends, but she particularly loves debate because she loves to understand how different people think and form their opinions. She is very excited to be part of the Crisis team for this year’s MEDMUN conference. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions or concerns. See you in the spring!

maxime jbilou

Maxime Jbilou is a 17 year-old first year student at Sciences Po, Campus de Menton. Born and raised in Paris, he has origins from Morocco and Lebanon which makes him even more interested in the politics concerning the Mediterranean region. He never had the chance to be part of an MUN conference before, so he looks forward to taking part in MEDMUN this year. He is really excited about discovering new interactions and new stakes concerning the Mediterranean region. Furthermore, he is genuinely motivated about writing and proposing entertaining scenarios in order to create the best MEDMUN experience ever.

bianca bartolini

Bianca Bartolini is a First Year student at SciencesPo Paris, Campus de Menton. Born in Rome, from an Italian father and Irish mother, she spent a semester in a high school in France where she further developed her knowledge of French. Model United Nations has been a passion of hers since she was fourteen, she has participated as a delegate in many conferences across the world: from Italy, Germany and Hungary to the United States and Mexico. These experiences have shaped her interest in international relations and human rights. Other than MEDMUN, she likes reading, writing and going out with friends. She is also involved with other associations on campus, volunteering with migrants and refugees. Some of Bianca’s best memories involve the dynamic debates in Crisis Committees and she can’t wait to recreate the same experience for the delegates of MEDMUN 2021!


morgane abbas

Currently a 16 year old first-year student in Sciences Po Paris, Campus de Menton, Morgane Abbas is beyond excited to join the 2020-20221 MEDMUN team as a member of the crisis pole. Growing up in Paris, surrounded by a Syrian father and a Moroccan mother, and following a Bachibac cursus that focuses on the Hispanic world has always made her immersed in a Mediterranean multiculturalist approach. Traveling around countries such as Morocco, Lebanon or even experimenting life in Syria for a few weeks where she could concretely observe the conditions and the situation in a country on war, made her want to deepen her analysis of the MENA region. Participating in MEDMUN is a rewarding first experience for her as she wants to work in the diplomacy sector, and she is sure that she will come out of it grown up! Apart from that, Morgane is keen on playing music (piano and violin) and learning new languages when the opportunity comes to her (French, Spanish, English, Arabic, German, Chinese), because they represent to her the key to cultural authenticity ! 

mariam refky habashy

Mariam Refky Habashy is a second year student at Sciences Po Menton, currently pursuing an Economics and Society major. Born and raised in Cairo, she couldn’t be but fascinated by politics after experiencing the upheaval that shook her country in 2011 and the deep aftereffects it had on the region as a whole . That developed into an early on interest for the history of the region but also for the fight for gender equality as well as social justice.Apart from her major, she is also really interested in international relations , so it’s no surprise that she decided to take part in MEDMUN and specifically the crisis committee as it gives the staff  the opportunity to roam free with their imagination to create interesting (if not sometime crazy) scenarios that make MEDMUN a truly unforgettable experience.

sofie Hojstrup overgaard

Sofie Højstrup Overgaard is a second year student at Sciences Po Paris, Campus de Menton. Born and raised in Denmark, she early on gained an interest in global politics, which she developed further when she helped found and run her high school's MUN club. She participated in many conferences around Denmark and Germany, and also helped start up her school's very own conference. Her interest in global politics is also what brought her to Menton, where she hopes to embark on new and exciting experiences as part of the crisis team. In her spare time, she enjoys spending her time at Sablettes listening to her friends play guitar, or on a quick run through the beautiful city.