BUIES CREEK — The Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law at Campbell University announced June 4 the receipt of a two-year grant in the amount of $144,904 from the North Carolina Governor’s Crime Commission for use in the Law School’s Juvenile Justice Mediation program. This grant will enable the program to be expanded to serve Wake County when the Law School moves to its new location in downtown Raleigh in September 2009.
Established in 2003 with a grant from the Governor’s Crime Commission, the Juvenile Justice program began as a clinical mediation program and has served Harnett, Lee and Johnston counties. Juvenile criminal cases from the local district are referred by the district attorney’s office, Dept of Juvenile Justice or local schools. The most typical crimes mediated through the program are assault and property crimes.
“Mediation puts the victim in a position to participate in their own case and let the offender know how they’ve been hurt. It gives the offender the opportunity to take responsibility for what they’ve done and then do something positive to make the other side as whole as they can,” said Professor Jon Powell, the director of the program.
Second and third year law students have the opportunity to participate in the Juvenile Justice Mediation program. They can elect to take the Juvenile Justice course and work as co-mediators in the program when the classroom portion of the course is completed.
“The Juvenile Justice Mediation program benefits our students by allowing them to get involved in real-life legal work,” said Powell. “Mediation is unique from other programs in that you don’t undertake representation of clients, but you do get to learn and practice vital skills such as interviewing clients, identifying issues and the ability to prepare adverse parties to come to the table to work out a solution.”
“This grant will enable us to take Campbell Law’s Juvenile Justice program to the next level,” said Dean Melissa Essary. “It has been such a valuable service in Harnett, Lee and Johnston counties, and we are pleased to make it available to the citizens of Wake County and the greater Raleigh area.”