Master of Dispute Resolution Graduate Profile | Law

Master of Dispute Resolution Graduate Profile

Amina Ahmed

Master of Dispute Resolution
Year commenced: 

What and where are you working on at the moment? I currently work as a Senior Magistrate and District Court judge, and preside over a Chief Magistrate Court under the Bauchi State Judiciary in Northern Nigeria. I am however, presently at Howard University as an invitee of President Obama for the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Fellowship to study public management after which I hope to return home to my work.

Why did you choose to do the Master of Dispute Resolution at UNSW Law?
I chose the program to enable me explore and gain an advanced level of knowledge and indebt understanding of the concept and strategies of dispute resolution mechanisms capable of resolving complex and/or sensitive disputes of various kinds at pre or post litigation stages and also to develop a managerial judge’s concept to enable me design how best settlement could be achieved among litigants. UNSW Law was my first choice of University to study for MDS because research shows it to be amongst the top best schools that offer a master of dispute resolution program that is rich in content within the shortest possible time. Also, Australia is noted for a long history of successful well developed dispute resolution system and I was sure of getting the best education in the discipline at UNSW Law which is located centrally at Sydney, Australia’s commercial capital.

What did you enjoy most about studying at UNSW Law?
What I enjoyed at UNSW Law the most are the experiential method of teaching adopted by the lecturers, the international and professional diversity of the students I studied with as well as the timely completion of my program. Prior to my study at UNSW Law, I assumed that the best way to study was reading text books, scholarly article, relevant legislations and other relevant documentation. The use of videos during the seminars made me realise the wealth of information available via this media. Also, the use of group and moot trial exercises to illustrate various points during the lecture was very rewarding. Further, my course mates brought wealth of experience from various background and nationalities and this added to the richness of my learning.

What did you like best about the learning environment at UNSW Law?
I could not have chosen a better university to study for my Master of dispute resolution. UNSW Law is a salubrious and safe place for learning. It has a well-stocked library with excellent online resources that enabled access from the comfort of my home. To this I owe the zeal to carry on research and my success at the university. I particularly liked the diversity of students studying at UNSW Law as this afforded me the opportunity to interact with nationals of various countries from all the continents. Consequently, I had the opportunity to learn and work in a team comprise of international and local students which has greatly prepared me to relate and work with various nationals efficiently.

How has the Masters benefited your career?
The master degree has made tremendous impact on my career; I am now skilled in dispute and conflict resolution and equipped with relevant skills, which I employ to positively contribute to the plans of the Bauchi State Government to establish and maintain institutionalised Alternative Dispute Resolution system capable of resolving disputes of various types at the pre and post litigation stages to help clear backlog of cases from the Courts. Further, I possess the requisite qualifications to apply for and be considered for employment with the United Nations, which is top priority on my career goal. I believe the master degree contributed greatly to building my leadership skills, which qualified me for selection for the Obama YALI Washington Fellowship program under which I am currently undergoing leadership training at Howard University under the Public Management tract.

What have been your achievements since completing the Masters? Since the completion of my masters, I have been working in collaboration with stakeholders to establish a multi-door courthouse/Dispute Resolution in the Judiciary in Bauchi State where I work. I am also currently working on the impact of the multi-door courthouse established in three states in Nigeria on litigation and dispute resolution trends in various states in Nigeria. I also mentor youths on career development as well as volunteer my dispute resolution services pro bono to women and youths in my immediate through Iqra Foundation for Women & Youth Development (IFWYD) an NGO founded by me in 2006.

Would you recommend the program to others who want to work in your field? Why?
I would recommend the program to others who want to work in the field or other fields because through the program I achieved my set objectives of gaining in-depth knowledge of all the available, accessible and practicable adversarial and non-adversarial dispute resolution processes, the characteristics and distinguishing features of each dispute resolution method and their area of application as well as limitations to their application to the various forms of dispute and conflict. The programs is flexible and caters to the growing market in dispute resolution for those who want to work in the field, as well as, others who wish to understand disputes/conflicts and the various dispute resolution methods for the purpose of applying the skills acquired to their various fields of employment.

Master of Dispute Resolution
Current employment: 
Senior Magistrate at Bauchi State Judiciary
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