Director: Lela P. Love
Recognizing a need for alternatives to litigation, Cardozo was one of the first schools in the nation to establish a Mediation Clinic. The Mediation Clinic was founded in 1985 and has been offered each year since.
The Mediation Clinic is an eight-credit, two-semester clinical program in which 16 students are trained and supervised in mediating cases at community dispute resolution centers, small claims court, and civil court, while they study the broad field of alternative dispute resolution (ADR). As well as studying the art and science of mediation, students practice techniques in conflict management that focus on legal counseling, negotiation, arbitration, and representation in mediation. Cases served by the clinic include disputes in community centers, small claims courts, civil courts and the EEOC between landlords and tenants, business partners, vendors and consumers, family members, neighbors, middle and high school students, and employees and employers.
In addition to the educational value of the Mediation Clinic, Cardozo is proud of the community service the clinic provides. Clinic participants are in training to be mediators in the fall semester of their program. In the spring semester they are full-fledged, approved mediators servicing difficult and diverse cases. Cardozo students participate in hundreds of cases each year, either as an apprentice mediator (observing or co-mediating) or as a mediator. Of those cases, a majority result in agreement between the parties. Supplementing their mediation service, each student gives a presentation on conflict resolution to high school, college, community or other audiences and writes a scholarly paper.
Alumni of Cardozo’s Mediation Clinic have become leaders in the field of dispute resolution, creating a vital community centered at the school.