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Texas Wesleyan Peacemakers shine at national tournament

02.29.2016 | By:
2015 Mediation Tournament Team

In November, eight students from Texas Wesleyan University participated in the Sixteenth Annual National Intercollegiate Mediation Tournament at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.  Every year, students from Texas Wesleyan participate in regional and national mediation tournaments, and are frequently recognized as among the best in the nation. 

In the mediation tournament, teams of three students each go through three preliminary rounds serving as mediators, advocates and clients. Mediators work with co-mediators from different schools, where students recognize that mediation is about working together to reach a solution, rather than competing at every turn. Advocates and clients are judged on their ability to present their case, to articulate their strengths and weaknesses, and to work with the mediators toward a solution while also meeting their needs and interests.  

This year, all three teams advanced to the semi-final rounds, with two of the teams advancing in both the Mediator and Advocate/Client divisions.

The team of Cynthia Gonzales, Adam Coen and Hina Syed was awarded the trophy for ninth place mediation team in the field of over 120 students representing universities from across the country.  In addition, the team of Tanner Breed, Zahraa Saheb, and a student from UT-Dallas placed 7th in the Advocate/ Client division.

The Texas Wesleyan Mediation Team brought home a remarkable number of individual awards:

Top Mediators:

2nd Place – Adam Coen

4th Place – Carlos Ruiz

6th Place – Tammy Hayes

14th Place – Cynthia Gonzalez


Top Advocate Client Teams:

10th Place – Zahraa Saheb/Alex Van Dufferen

13th Place – Adam Coen/Cynthia Gonzalez

15th Place – Patricia Duffey/Carlos Ruiz


By placing in the top fifteen, each of these students has earned the designation of “All American.”  In addition, Cynthia, Hina and Adam received Honorable Mention for the “Spirit of Mediation” award, voted on by the participants.

“The students gained a great deal from this experience, and Dr. Payne and I are extremely proud of the way they represented Texas Wesleyan.”- Dr. Barbara Kirby, Mediation Team Coach and Director of Paralegal Studies. The team is also coached by Dr. Michelle Payne, Associate Professor of Political Science.