Below, you will find answers to the most commonly asked questions about HACIA Democracy XXIII. This list is regularly updated to reflect the newest questions that have arisen in our communication with faculty advisors and delegates. If you have a question to which you cannot find the answer below, please email [email protected], and we will do our best to help you.


What is HACIA Democracy?
HACIA Democracy is the oldest and most prestigious simulation of the Organization of American States in the world. Every year, we bring together 400 to 600 students from 13 different countries across the Americas to discuss the world’s most pressing social and political issues. Our conference is entirely run by Harvard undergraduate students, recruited through a highly selective process. To find out more about the mission and history of our conference, please visit our “About” page.


Where and when will HACIA be held this year?
We are pleased to announce that HACIA 2017 will take place in the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Panama City, Panama. The conference will run from March 9th, 2017 to March 12th, 2017.


Do I need to be invited to participate in HACIA?
HACIA Democracy strives to be inclusive of all students interested in participating. You do not need a formal invitation to participate, although we do reach out to a number of high-potential schools every year. Our entire registration process can be completed online at any time between now and December 27th, 2016 (registration fees climb the later you register). If you have any questions about attending HACIA for the first time, please reach out to our recruiting director Cristina Parajon ([email protected]).


Does my school need to stay at the Sheraton Grand?
All schools from outside Panama City, Panama are required to stay at the conference hotel, the Sheraton Grand in Panama City, between March 9th and March 12th. We have secured a special discount with the Grand Sheraton for HACIA participants which includes two lunches and coffee breaks.

We believe having all students stay at the hotel is crucial for a number of reasons:

  • Much of the learning process of HACIA takes place outside the committee room. Delegates who do not stay at the hotel would miss out on opportunities to get to know other delegations at the hotel, and on a number of social events that HACIA organizes.
  • Delegates need to be staying on the premises of the hotel in order to participate in night crisis, one of the highlights of most delegates’ experience.
  • Having delegates staying at the hotel is one of the main reasons we are able to secure hotel space at a competitive rate. Should we give schools the options not to stay at the conference hotel, we would be forced to substantially increase our registration fees in order to remain financially sustainable.


What if my school is from Panama City?
If you are from Panama City, please indicate so in your registration form. We will send you an invoice reflecting the costs of using the hotel space without staying in hotel rooms.


Are any scholarships available for HACIA?
HACIA offers special arrangements for public schools interested in participating in HACIA Democracy XXIII as part of our Delegate Diversity Initiative. If you are a public school interested in this program, please reach out to our Vice-President Juan Miramontes ([email protected]).

HACIA does not currently offer any individual scholarships to private school students.


I want to register for HACIA as an individual. Is that allowed?
For reasons of legal liability, we cannot have independent students travel to HACIA without a faculty advisor present. If you are interested in coming to HACIA as an individual, we highly encourage you to provide us with the contact information of the activities coordinator, a teacher, or the principal of your school, so that we can invite your school to put together a delegation. Delegations do not have to be large – some schools only send 3 or 4 students!

If you wish to come to HACIA as an individual student and your school indicates to us that they are not interested in participating, you will need to provide proof that you will be traveling with a legal guardian and that your school is allowing you to miss class. These situations will be handled on a case-by-case basis. Please contact [email protected] if you are in this situation.


Which committees require special applications?
Three committees are application-based:
Gran Colombia, 1821 (English)
Sandinista Front for National Liberation, 1979 (English)
Consejo de Seguridad de la ONU (Spanish)

Please note that although there will be a historical crisis committee in Spanish, this year, we have decided to make Consejo de Seguridad the application based committee in Spanish, as it can be expected to be the most fast-paced committee and only recommended for highly experienced delegates.

Delegates interested in participating in these committees should fill out an application, save it as a PDF, and then send it to their faculty advisor who will upload it as part of the registration process. Please do not provide help to delegates filling out this application. Delegates who are not granted a spot in these cabinets will automatically receive a spot in regular committees.


Which committees are best suited for beginners?
Our designated novice committees are the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO) in English and the Cumbre de las Américas in Spanish. The chairs in charge of these committees have been specially selected for their ability to work with delegates new to HACIA, and will spend some time in committee going over parliamentary procedure.

First-time delegates are encouraged to register for these committees, but they are free to select a different committee if they find other topics more engaging. We ask, however, that you do not send any advanced delegates in search of easy awards to these two committees.


Which committees are double delegation committees?
In English, the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) will be a double delegation committee.
In Spanish, the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) will be a double delegation committee.
Please note that depending on registration numbers, some other committees may become double-delegation or vice versa. HACIA is committed to maintaining a low delegate to staffer ratio.


Where can I find special applications?
Special applications for our cabinets and our Junior Staff program can be found here.


Where can I find the list of English and Spanish committees?
The list of all English and Spanish Committees available at HACIA XXIII can be found here. Click on any image for a more detailed description of the committee topics and the co-chairs.


Do delegates need to apply to be on Press Corps and NGO?
This year, delegates interested in participating in the Press Corps/NGO program need not fill out a special application. Simply ask your delegates who is interested in being part of press corps, and sign up as many delegates as are interested as part of the online registration process.



How do I book hotel rooms?
Please make reservations directly with the hotel after successfully completing registration for the conference. Please use the code HAC08MAR to receive a special discount! You will be asked how many rooms you need at the Grand Sheraton for your delegation. PLEASE NOTE: The invoice that you receive this year from HACIA Democracy will ONLY cover the costs of registration with HACIA.


What are the hotel room prices and bed sizes?
All hotel prices quoted are per day. We ask that you please try to consolidate rooms as much as possible. Room types within our reserved room block will be given on a first come, first serve basis.

  • Deluxe double (3 people, 2 queen beds) : USD 149
  • Deluxe single (2 people, one king bed) : USD 119

What meals will be covered by the food and beverage fee?

Based on feedback from our advisors, this year, delegates will have more freedom to eat at the great selection of restaurants outside of the Sheraton at mealtimes.  Thus, two lunches and all coffee breaks throughout conference will be covered by the food and beverage fee, plus the appreciation event for advisors.  You wil be responsible for paying all other meals. This has also enabled us to make the former accommodation fee (now food and beverage fee) significantly cheaper for our delegates. 


For any questions, contact [email protected]