Student Profile

  • Rod McIntyre

    Rod McIntyre

    “The topics of negotiation and mediation apply to virtually everything,” says Rod McIntyre, vice president for program development for the Kansas Association of Realtors®. “We negotiate daily without thinking about it. Anyone who has more than one child has been a mediator.” Wanting to refine those useful skills, McIntyre enrolled in Northwestern’s Mediation Skills Training 40-Hour Certificate course. “I think we all came into class with some mediation skills,” says McIntyre. “What we learned was the value of allowing people to reach conclusions themselves, to give them more of a buy-in. The process makes you a better listener and more patient.”

    With a PhD in education from the University of Kansas and a long career as an educator, McIntyre knows his way around a classroom. “I came to Northwestern with high expectations, and they were exceeded,” says McIntyre. When the intensive weeklong program concluded, McIntyre wrote a fan letter to his instructors: SPS Dean Thomas F. Gibbons; Lisa Zulanas, a mediator and consultant; and Erin Jennings, an attorney, mediator and private investigator. “You each brought something special and powerful to every session,” wrote McIntrye. “I had many conversations with my classmates throughout the week, and you would have enjoyed hearing what they said.”

    McIntyre connected with his classmates as they worked on exercises in groups of three, rotating through roles as mediator and opposing parties in a dispute. Situations included community concerns about a church’s plan to serve people with psychological challenges; a real estate transaction where a problem with a property had not been disclosed; university students protesting grades. The exercises allowed the class to practice the ideas explored in lectures and discussions. “The instructors didn’t just hand us formulas,” says McIntyre. “We learned to weave these skills into our thinking process.”