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Mackenzie Hadler (C'16) Named All American in Mediation Competition

Thursday, December 5, 2013  
Posted by: Kari Lammer
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Mackenzie Hadler (C’16) didn’t come to the University of Dubuque for the mediation team, but it is something that has become an important part of her life.  

Hadler, from Minneapolis, Minnesota, originally choose to attend UD to play softball.  However, after playing for a year, she decided playing Division III sports was not for her.  She decided to focus on her major and her career.  Hadler is majoring in sociology and criminal justice.   

During her freshman year, Professor Ben Bartels was actively recruiting students to join the mediation team.  The mediation team gives students real life experience as a mediator, attorney, and client in disputes. With Hadler’s softball schedule, she was not able to join, but did take advantage of a mediation J-Term class Bartels was offering.  The J-Term class was a preview to a mediation competition.  This peaked Hadler’s interest in joining the team once her softball season was complete.   

"Professor Bartels talks to students about the benefits of joining the mediation team, such as becoming an All-American or being able to put an accomplishment on your resume.  But I was interested in the mediation team to practice my public speaking skills and my interpersonal communication,” said Hadler.  Joining the team not only has helped Hadler with her communication skills, but she has also won the honor of All American. 

Just this year, Hadler has competed in three competitions: University of Wisconsin, Platteville, Wisconsin; Maharishi University of Management, Fairfield, Iowa; and the Annual International Intercollegiate Mediation Tournament at Drake University Law School, Des Moines, Iowa.  "The first competition at Platteville, we didn’t receive our scores back, so it was hard to tell how we did. However, at Maharishi University, we received excellent feedback and that gave us confidence going into the national competition,” explained Hadler.   

The University of Dubuque team scored very well at the national event, but Hadler in particular ranked 10th out of 126 competitors as best mediator. This achievement designates Hadler as an All American.  "This experience has helped me in many ways.  It has helped with my career goals, but also helped me be more articulate.  I see myself mediating all the time – amongst friends, what to eat for dinner, things like that,” said Hadler.   

As Hadler focuses on her career, she knows her career field of choice is criminal justice.  She will explore graduate schools, careers in mediation, working at a corrections facility, or maybe even as a parole officer.  

Hadler encourages more people - students and staff alike - to get more involved in the mediation team, "If we have more students give it a chance, we will have more opportunities for success.” 

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