McCormack Speaks

January 23, 2017
by McCormack Speaks
2 Comments

Five Key Tips to Resolve Conflict: What I Learned in Small Claims Court

Anonymous
A Conflict Resolution student at the McCormack Graduate School

courtroom

While many people might like to avoid conflict altogether, as a graduate student in conflict resolution, I jumped at the opportunity to gain hands-on practical experience learning to mediate between plaintiffs and defendants in small-claims court. However, through this internship, I not only learned effective mediation strategies from skilled and experienced mediation mentors, I also learned skills applicable to all levels of human communication. Through this internship, I was able to put into practice the art of recognizing and appreciating the underlying human values behind a dispute, learn to balance engagement in the conflict with detachment from outcome, and to become aware and mindfully check my own biases towards one party or another. Continue Reading →

January 12, 2017
by justinmaher
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Goodbye, Hello: Reflections on What’s Next for Public Service

by Justin Maher
McCormack Graduate School Dean’s Office

President Obama Delivers Address, 2016Tuesday night, President Obama took the stage to deliver his farewell address. In it, he painted an optimistic portrait of a nation filled with promise and people of all political stripes ready to continue to fight for an inclusive democracy. He also acknowledged that “our political dialogue has become so corrosive that people of good character aren’t even willing to enter into public service.” That frightening proposition, echoed by polls that show the steady and alarming decline of trust in government, deserves serious reflection.

As the assistant dean for academic programs at McCormack, I spend a good chunk of time talking to prospective students investigating graduate school. There are a myriad of reasons why they choose to pursue graduate study. Some are coming from a bachelor’s program and want to continue to specialize in a field they are passionate or curious about. Others are seasoned professionals ready for a career change or new skills. But, in addition to the personal and professional benefits, they are united by a commitment to improving their local and global communities.  Continue Reading →

January 10, 2017
by McCormack Speaks
0 comments

Family Life Under the Stigma of Undocumented Immigration

by Rebecca Schneider
Graduate Student at UMass Boston

Boy with hands over his face“You have reached the voicemail box of…”

“You have reached the voicemail box of…”

“You have reached the voicemail box of…”

Panic set in. I was supposed to get dinner with him at Chili’s, my pregnancy cravings running wild for those honey chipotle chicken crispers. We had just talked about it on the phone less than an hour before. After a few minutes of waiting in the car, his family saw me, came outside and said, “He was pulled over by the police driving home in the work truck and they took him.” I sped back home, tears streaming down my face, and frantically told my parents what was going on.

We rushed to the police station, even though he told me not to come. He didn’t want me to see him there under those circumstances. When we got there, an officer told us he didn’t have any documentation, so there was no way they could release him. I went back to his apartment, scrambling to find anything I could that would show that he had lived here a long time–his high school diploma, his bartending license, some cash he had, thinking maybe it would help. When I got back, the officer sneered, “I couldn’t release him if I wanted to.” Continue Reading →

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