West Chester University President, Greg R. Weisenstein, is serious about promoting harmony and quality-of-life for his faculty, staff, and students. So serious, in fact, that he has tasked his Associate Vice President of Human Resources, Michael Maloy, and his Director of Social Equity, Barbara Schneller, with spearheading a mediation program.
Happily, Ms. Schneller knew to contact the Center for Resolutions. And after speaking with CFR’s Director of Mediation, Tracy Hornig, Ms. Schneller knew she had found an organization that shared President Weisenstein’s vision for a vibrant, multi-faceted conflict resolution program.
CFR was subsequently retained to not only help form West Chester University’s internal mediation program, but to also provide basic mediation training. In March 2013, CFR conducted its Basic Mediation Training for a select group of faculty and staff. Given the intensity of this training – enrollees had to participate in 24 hours of role-play and other hands-on activities – the University’s participation showed true dedication to conflict management.
Then-Director of Residence Life, Marion McKinney, took CFR’s Basic Mediation Training. She was so impressed with her experience, that she contracted CFR to train her staff. In August 2013, CFR conducted eight hours of Conflict Resolution Skills Training for approximately 110 Resident Assistants, and 24-hours of Basic Mediation Training for Resident Hall Directors, Graduate Resident Hall Directors, and Graduate Assistants.
West Chester University’s partnership with CFR shows an impressive commitment to fostering a peaceful, productive environment for its faculty, staff, and students. Universities can be hothouses of discord: students face not only academic pressure, but also serious social pressure, especially since they are often living away from home for the first time. Moreover, conflicts arise between frustrated parents and faculty, as well as among staff. CFR’s training provided participants with the tools necessary to recognize stressors, communicate concerns, and ultimately resolve – or at least neutralize – conflict.
For testimonials on how CFR’s trainings helped West Chester University promote a healthy living and working environment, please visit CFR’s Facebook page.