UD Performs Well at International Mediation Tournament

Nov 17, 2017 | Stacey Ortman, University Relations

DUBUQUE, Iowa – University of Dubuque earned top finishes at the 2017 International Intercollegiate Mediation Tournament held Nov. 9-11 at Brenau University in Gainesville, Ga.

“This is the third year in a row in which UD has placed in the top 2 in the nation,” said Ben Bartels, mediation team coach, assistant professor of criminal justice, and pre-law advisor at UD.

The UD mediation team of Amanda Downing, a junior criminal justice major from Freeport, Ill.; Marissa Joers, a junior business and English major from Racine, Wis.; and De’Shaun Madkins, a senior criminal justice, sociology, and English major from Milwaukee, Wis., earned second place in the Advocate/Client Team category and fourth place in the Mediation Team category.

“We proved to not only ourselves, but to our competition that small universities can compete and perform just as well as larger institutions,” Madkins said. “Not to mention the smile we put on Professor Bartels’s face when all the announcements were made. It is always a good feeling to know that you not only made your school proud but also your coach, who puts in just as much, if not more, time as we do.”

The International Academy of Dispute Resolution sponsors the undergraduate mediation tournament to give students a real-life experience as mediator, attorney, and client. Three students compose a team, and each student must participate as mediator in one of three preliminary rounds.

University of Dubuque sent three teams to the tournament. Team 1 was comprised of Downing, Joers, and Madkins. Team 2 was made up of Noah Hoskins, a junior philosophy major from Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Joseph Furnstahl, a senior criminal justice and sociology major from Eagan, Minn.; and Jade Romagna, a junior criminal justice major from Dubuque. The final team, Team 3, consisted of Jenna Lauritzen, a sophomore business major from Bryant, Iowa; Sara Hartung, a sophomore communication major from Preston, Iowa; and Riyan White, a first-year criminal justice major from Madison, Wis.

Not only did UD perform as a team, but the students also shined in individual categories. The following students were recognized as All-American because of their individual performance:

  • Downing and Joers earned third place in the Individual Advocate/Client category.
  • Madkins and Joers earned fourth place in the Individual Advocate/Client category.
  • Romagna earned eighth place in the Individual Mediator category.
  • Downing earned 12th place in the Individual Mediator category.

“Participating in mediation for me was originally to enhance my communication abilities and work on skills that will allow me to become a real-life mediator. However, mediation has become something that I look forward to each year working with my pre-law family, representing our institution, and defending my status as an All-American,” Madkins said. “I can sincerely say that I am fortunate to be a part of a program with so many dedicated teammates and an even more dedicated coach.”