McCormack Speaks

February 17, 2017
by McCormack Speaks
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UMass Boston, Suffolk DA Partner on Restorative Justice Program for Juvenile Offenders

McCormack Graduate School will assist in Boston juvenile restorative justice programMcCormack Graduate School’s Restorative Justice Project, part of the work of its Center for Peace, Democracy, and Development, recently signed a memorandum of understanding  to create an initiative for juvenile offenders that uses restorative justice.

The pilot project is the first of its kind in Massachusetts.

Read the news story written by UMass Boston’s Colleen Locke.

February 15, 2017
by McCormack Speaks

McCormack’s Community Mediation Grant Program Shows Large Return on Investment

"Solution" written on blackboardAs the state dispute resolution agency, the Massachusetts Office of Public Collaboration (MOPC), part of UMass Boston’s John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies, awards annual state operating grants to 12 local community mediation centers statewide delivering services through trained volunteers. Each January, through a legislative briefing at the State House, MOPC reports back to state officials about the impact the public funding has made in providing conflict resolution services to local courts and communities.

Convened by Representative Sarah Peake and Senator Adam Hinds, the briefing was attended by more than 130 people who listened to students from middle and high schools in Fitchburg, Greenfield, Lawrence, and Lowell talk about helping to resolve conflict in their respective schools and what being a peer mediator has meant to them.

Read the entire news story on our website.

January 23, 2017
by McCormack Speaks

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

A Conflict Resolution student at the McCormack Graduate School


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 →

November 23, 2016
by McCormack Speaks

How NOT to Avoid Political Conversations at Your Holiday Dinner

by Karen Ross
Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance

holiday dinner

Credit: Flickr user Zeetz Jones

Are you hoping you can avoid political conversations with family at the holiday dinner table or are you dreading a confrontation with that know-it-all brother-in-law? The recent election cycle has made evident the deep divisions that exist in the United States. As we head into the holiday season, the desire to avoid political conversations is understandable. These are difficult discussions to have in any context, all the more so at a holiday dinner in the wake of an election campaign that has left people along the political spectrum feeling angry, fearful, joyful, arrogant, and dismissive. It is easy for conversations to turn into attacks that leave nobody feeling better and certainly don’t result in changes of opinion.

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October 19, 2016
by McCormack Speaks

5 Questions to Help Your Team Work Better Together and Resolve Conflict at Work

by Eben Weitzman
Department of Conflict Resolution, Human Security, and Global Governance

finger pointing imageMore than ever, people today work in teams. The benefits of teams seem obvious: a greater diversity of knowledge and skill; more hands to help with the lift; more perspectives; and the synergy of people working together. And yet, unresolved conflicts in teams are common, and often at the heart of baffling, frustrating organizational problems.

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