Elisabeth Reese '21

Elisabeth Reese is a first-year at DePauw. She and one other freshman are training as mediators in order to keep peace for the DePauw Community.

HerCampus: Thank you so much for meeting today! 

Elisabeth Reese: Thanks!

HC: First off, what is Restorative Justice club?

ER: It is a club that works around campus that engages in mediation efforts and making the campus aware of conflict and ways to handle it.

HC: You are in training as a mediator for RJ. What is the training like and what do you have to endure?

ER: It is so fun. We watch videos in order to educate us on what RJ is, we did games for bonding and games that taught us how to effectively communicate. We do mock mediation role plays. I was once the lead mediator for our conflict role play. There was a script and two people were in a fight. Me and my co-mediator had to mediate this conflict. We learned about reflective listening and things of that nature.

HC: Why do you believe this is beneficial to the community?

ER: Because it’s a way to repair the different conflicts that happen around campus, that way there is not animosity between people on campus. It makes people realize the wrong they have done and effectively communicate it and learn from it. If someone were to simply be punished, they may not fully recognize the harm they’ve caused.

HC: What compelled you to join? 

ER: I feel like conflict is such a widespread issue in our everyday lives, so I feel it is good to be able to handle conflict and help other people handle conflict. I think it is a great way to help other people in my community.

HC: As a first-year, certain things can be a bit intimidating. Did you ever feel nervous about getting involved? Would you recommend others to join?

ER: I was nervous because when we came in, I was one of the two freshmen in the training session. I would definitely recommend that people get involved because it is such a valuable experience, and after the games I got to know upperclassmen and become involved with them. It is such a key skill to learn and a great cause to be involved in.

HC: Thank you so much, Elisabeth!

ER: Thank you, Natalie!