The undergraduates named Best Team at National Mediation Competition
Law students from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) have been named the best mediators in the business.
Dorota Estkowska, Charlotte Hurst, Mathew Smith and Josiah Raphael beat off stiff competition from 15 law schools around the UK to claim the Best Team title at the National Mediation Competition.
A jubilant Mathew said: “Winning the competition and speaking to professionals acting as judges furthered my belief in two things, firstly that mediation will play a huge part in a lawyer’s future, and secondly that UCLan is at the forefront of teaching and further developing the skills required for such an ever growing practice.”
"It has been an exceptional experience and pleasurable journey. The competition was excellent and such competitions are great to meet highly skilled and interesting individuals."
In addition to the team’s success, individual awards went to Josiah and Dorota. Josiah, from Chiswick, collected his trophy for Best Party while Dorota claimed the trophy for Best Overall Mediator. She commented: “It has been an exceptional experience and pleasurable journey. The competition was excellent and such competitions are great to meet highly skilled and interesting individuals.”
The two-day national competition, which was held recently at the University’s Preston Campus, included four rounds during which teams of undergraduates would compete by co-mediating and playing the role of parties. The scenarios had serious civil and commercial issues and were assessed by 32 judges, who are professional mediators from around the country. They included Andrew Goodman, Paul Randolph and Michael Redfern QC.
UCLan Senior Law Lecturer Emma McAndry, who coached the winning team, said: “I am absolutely delighted and immensely proud that our students have done so well. They have proved themselves to be talented and dedicated students.”
The prize for the victorious students is a trip to Chicago next month to compete in the International Mediation Competition.
"The National Mediation Competition, arranged and staged by UCLan, was testament to the high quality and standard of the participating students."
Mediation is a fast growing alternative to litigation for resolving disputes. UCLan has recently become academically and practically dominant in the mediation market. Nearly two years ago saw the start of the ‘LLB with Mediation’ programme and the launch of the Centre for Mediation, which incorporates the unique and innovative Mediation Clinic. This supports student’s practical learning, in addition to providing a service to the local community. The Clinic recently won the Professional Mediation Association’s National award of Highly Commended Rising Star for demonstrating excellence in a new mediation programme.
Barrister Michael Redfern QC said: “The courts are now recommending mediation in many cases as the success rate is high. UCLan is pioneering mediation training through Emma McAndry and her team. The National Mediation Competition, arranged and staged by UCLan, was testament to the high quality and standard of the participating students.”