What is Mediation?
Mediation is a voluntary mutual effort to find a suitable resolution to an existing disagreement or dispute through negotiations that seek to meet the legitimate interests of each party. These negotiations are facilitated by trained, neutral mediators. Mediation will not preclude other dispute resolution mechanisms such as the disciplinary process.
When is Mediation Appropriate?
Mediation is most productive in situations where individuals want to resolve a problem, but just can't seem to get there on their own. Examples might include the following:
- Roommate disagreements
- Minor disputes among significant others
- Minor harassment issues
- Differences among student leaders
- Minor intercultural misunderstandings
- Personal property and access issues
- Classmate disputes
Who are the Mediators?
Mediators are faculty and staff members of the University. In the near future, the College will offer peer mediation with student mediators as an option, but as of the creation of this website, peer mediation is not yet available. Mediators have completed a four-hour training session, and must maintain active participation in mediation sessions or repeat the training on an annual basis to remain certified.
Who Can Participate in Mediation?
Any currently enrolled student in the College may take advantage of mediation services. An enrolled student may request that mediation services be used with a dispute involved a person outside of the College community. Such requests must be reviewed and approved by the Assistant Dean of Students. Most often, mediation services by agencies in the greater Rochester area are more appropriate resources for these types of disputes.
Can Mediation be used as a Substitute for the Disciplinary Process?
The Assistant Dean of Students can offer mediation as an alternative to adjudication through the disciplinary process when (1) the Assistant Dean of Students, in his/her sole discretion, believes mediation is viable and appropriate, and (2) when both disputants are willing to utilize mediation services in the attempt to resolve an issue.
Can Others Refer Students to Mediation?
Others may suggest mediation as an alternative, but mediation is not mandatory. Individuals may consult with any member of the Residential Life or Office of the Dean of Students staff about mediation referrals.
Can Students Request Mediation Directly?
Absolutely! This is the preferred mechanism for entering into the process, as mediation works best when ownership for resolution resides with the disputants. The best way to request mediation is through the form at the bottom of this page, although phone calls and drop-ins are accepted at the Office of the Dean of Students.
How Much Does Mediation Cost?
Here is the best part: mediation services are free to all currently enrolled undergraduates!