EMU: New restorative justice certificate available to adult degree earners

Law enforcement, security, and mediation professionals looking to finish their bachelor's degree may find a perfect fit in a new concentration at Eastern Mennonite University (EMU). A new certificate in restorative justice is now available through EMU's Adult Degree Program, in which adults returning to college earn a bachelor's in leadership and organizational management. 

The certificate can be earned as part of the leadership and organizational management, or on its own for those who already have a bachelor's degree. 

When taken in conjunction with the leadership and organizational management coursework, students just add one restorative justice class per semester of their program, to graduate at the same time as their cohort. 

"This is about giving people an opportunity to learn new practices and skills, to think differently about situations in which they find themselves, to seek less harmful outcomes," said Margo McIntire, program coordinator. "It's the old adage that if the only tool you have is a hammer then everything looks like a nail."

McIntire said the impetus for the certificate came from a growing national recognition of the benefits of having restorative justice practitioners in our institutions and communities. 

"Of course, EMU is widely known for its excellence in pedagogy and practice of restorative justice. The time seemed ripe to make this more broadly accessible," she said. 

Four classes are required to earn the certificate:

  • PXD 261 Community and Conflict Analysis Techniques, 
  • PXD 331 Restorative Justice and Trauma Awareness,
  • PXD 341 Mediation and Facilitation, and
  • SOWK 360 Race and Gender.

EMU has been at the forefront of the restorative justice movement for nearly 25 years. To learn more, look for RJ courses in the Summer Peacebuilding Institute in the mid-90s and check out upcoming and past webinars available for free from the Zehr Institute for Restorative Justice.