Students experiencing a conflict with peers, roommates, faculty or others can contact the Dean of Student’s who will listen to the student and discuss which of the conflict resolution processes available might be the most helpful in resolving the problem. If, after this conversation, the student decides that s/he would like to participate in a conflict resolution process a member of the SDCL team will work through the process with them.
Facilitators may be members of the SDCL staff, a peer mentor/student leader, a counselor or GA.
There are several conflict resolution processes offered through the Office of the Dean of Students. If an agreement is made between the disputing parties it will be one that was created and agreed to by the students involved in the conflict, not an administrator or other 3rd party. If you would like to speak with a staff member about a dispute you are experiencing you can contact the Office of the Dean of Students at (502) 873-4488 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Conflict Resolution Processes
Mediation is a dispute resolution process during which a trained, neutral facilitator meets with parties involved in a conflict and helps them resolve the issue by providing guidelines for communication and ensuring that everyone involved has a chance to speak.
Restorative Circles are a dispute resolution process based upon the principles of restorative justice. Circles seek to address conflicts by:
Providing opportunities for dialogue, direct or indirect, between offending parties and those they have harmed by their actions.
Encouraging collaborations between the offending parties rather than isolating them.
Showing respect for all parties including offenders, impacted individuals and community.
Restorative circles are used at the Spalding University when an incident or conflict is impacting a group of community members. Restorative circles are also used in some conduct cases.
Dialogue is a facilitated conversation during which people with different beliefs and perspectives seek to develop mutual understanding about a particular topic. Participants in dialogue often gain fresh perspectives on the conflict and begin to see new possibilities for interaction and action outside of the dialogue room.
At the Spalding University we use dialogue programs to address issues impacting our community on a large scale. Some examples of topics that have been discussed at dialogue programs at Spalding previously, include, but are not limited to; changes to the policy on smoking/tobacco use on campus, the proposed move from a 6-Week Session System and ongoing ‘Dialogues on Diversity’.
Conflict coaching is a 1:1 meeting between a SDCL staff member and a student interested in resolving a conflict without the assistance of a 3rd party. During the conflict coaching session, the staff member assists the student in identifying conflict management strategies that are targeted specifically to their particular situation and that can be implemented without a 3rd party facilitator. Not only can conflict coaching assist students in resolving the immediate conflict concerning them, but can help students develop strategies for more effectively addressing conflict in the future.