After placing first at nationals in the advocate-client division, Texas Wesleyan’s undergraduate mediation team will compete in the 12th Annual International Law School Mediation Tournament.
The tournament will be held at Law Society of Dublin, Ireland from March 12-15. Teams from Canada, Great Britain, Germany and Ireland are set to compete along with Wesleyan’s team.
Dr. Barbara Kirby, paralegal studies program director at Wesleyan, said she started coaching the team in 2010, and this was the first year her team had won at nationals during her years as coach.
“This is the first time we have had the opportunity to go to the international tournament,” Kirby said. “I am so excited.”
Kirby said this opportunity was possible from the support given by anonymous donors, the provost and the Student Government Association.
“We are extremely excited and I hope we are going to do well, the tough thing about is we will be the only undergraduates,” Kirby said. “All the rest of the students will be law students, so that is pretty intimidating.”
According to the Law Society’s website and its information on the mediation tournament, teams of three students each go through three preliminary rounds acting as mediators, advocates and clients. The students who are advocates and clients are judged based upon their ability to present their cases and the mediators are judged on their ability to work together with the co-mediator, along with other skills.
Kirby said Tracy McArthur, senior paralegal studies major, Tara Ramfield, senior paralegal studies major, and Cassandra Holland, are the three students who will compete in the tournament.
“I know my students are very good at the mediation process, I don’t think the legal aspects of it are as important,” Kirby said. “I think the important thing is the skills in peace making, so therefore I think that they are going to make a good showing.”
Kirby said when it comes to the trip itself, she is looking forward to seeing Dublin.
“It’s supposed to be a really great city, very beautiful and green, and a lot of history,” Kirby said. “We are definitely excited about representing Texas Wesleyan on a worldwide scale not just on a national scale.”
Kirby said the group will definitely flaunt their school spirit with Texas Wesleyan jackets and scarfs while they are away at the tournament.
She said after the international tournament she will start recruiting students for next fall.
“We recruit all over campus, you don’t have to be a law school student to participate,” Kirby said. “We could also use people with a flair for the dramatic in this type of competition, anybody who likes role play I think it’s a good thing to do.”
McArthur said she is looking forward to demonstrating her skills and strategies at the international tournament.
“This experience has created friendships that will last a lifetime, as well a sense of pride in knowing that we will be a part of Texas Wesleyan history,” McArthur said. “I hope that by winning the national tournament, we will have stirred something in the students for years to come.”
Ramfield said she is excited about what going to this competition means for Texas Wesleyan.
“To have our school compete in an international competition along with teams from the U.S., Canada, Great Britain, Germany and Ireland shows that Texas Wesleyan University embodies a diverse group of talented students who know how to work together to find solutions,” Ramfield said.