Profile: Crisis Director Colin Mark

Harvard sophomore Colin Mark serves as the Crisis Director for the Futuristic Commission on Space Development.


The Futuristic Commission on Space Development has encountered crises including the death of tourists on a SpaceX ship, international outcry from religious groups and assemblies, and alien diseases. Behind all of those crises is Crisis Director Colin Mark, a sophomore Social Studies major at Harvard College who has served as the mastermind behind many of the issues presented to the committee.

Mark, who has been an avid participant of Model United Nations for the past six years, saw himself being a part of the conference as a “foregone conclusion,” but wanted to be part of a more interesting committee experience.

“Last year I was the Assistant Director for the AdHoc committee so I got to see and deal with a lot of the crises in that,” Mark said. “This committee, however, has given me the opportunity to be creative and to throw curveballs at delegates.”

Set in 2030, the Futuristic Commission on Space Development is one of nine Economic and Social Council committees at the 61st session of the Harvard National Model United Nations conference, but with an added twist of crisis updates. Earlier in the day, the committee was informed that tourists aboard a SpaceX craft on a mission to the moon had become infected with an unknown virus, and the committee was quickly forced to address the crisis update.

“They sent another ship to dock the craft and said that if a person died, they would send the craft to deep space,” Mark said. “One person did die, and although the others were open to treatment, because of the directive the committee made, 26 people were sent out to space to starve to death.”

For Mark, being able to direct crises outside of the normal setting of a specialized agency has proven to be an interesting experience.

“I don’t have to respond to crisis notes,” Mark said. “The delegates’ focus is still on their working papers, and my focus is to create a good atmosphere.”

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