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Conflict Resolution Students Learn the Art of Mediation

A University of St. Thomas international studies course offers students the first-time opportunity to earn a certificate in professional conflict mediation. As a result, the Association for Conflict Resolution chapter in Houston (ACRH) recognized two UST international studies students, Thomas Beaver and Adil Gokturk, and one South Texas College of Law student Adam Aldrete, with the Manousso Mediation Student Scholarship. The students, who expressed interest in alternative dispute resolution, were selected against many other applicants and were honored with a dinner at the Junior League on Nov. 20.

Beavers, an MLA candidate scheduled to graduate in Fall 2014, and Goturk, an undergraduate, were awarded a full-year membership to the ACRH by Dr. Barbara Sunderland Manousso, an adjunct international studies professor, former president of the ACRH and current Chairman of the ACR International-Health Care Section.

“I was thrilled upon receiving the scholarship, as membership in the ACRH will certainly open doors and provide opportunities for me to learn more about the field of alternative dispute resolution,” Beaver said. “The certification itself will benefit me personally by allowing me to practice mediation and will help to make my resume more marketable.”

Additionally, Goturk received the honor of being named student representative of the board. His duties include participating in all board meetings and attending the annual International ACR Conference, to be held in Cincinnati September.

Goturk plans to pursue Global Conflict Resolution projects after graduation.

“Receiving this scholarship will give me the opportunity to make contacts and build relationships with professionals in the field of Alternative Dispute Resolution,” Goturk said. “I believe that this connection with professionals working on real-world issues will be a powerful addition to my academic education.”

Manousso, who trains professionals in mediation at Manousso Mediation Training and Alternative Dispute Resolution Services, co-taught the inaugural Conflict Global Management course at UST this fall with attorney Melissa Back.

The course resulted in a certificate, a professional credential, which will allow students to professionally conduct mediation.

Beaver, who plans to pursue international mediation, found the course to be informative and beneficial to all students.

“We learned a number of skills which I believe will carry over to the students, even if they choose to pursue a career outside of mediation,” Beaver said.

For more information on the mediation training or the global conflict management course, please contact Dr. Hans Stockton, professor and director of the Center for International Studies at 713-525-3536.

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