The Republic of Slovenia lies at the heart of Europe, where the Alps and the Mediterranean meet the Pannonian plains and the mysterious Karst. To the north is Austria; to the east, Hungary; to the south, Croatia; and to the west, Italy. Slovenia became an independent state in 1991 and a member of the EU on May 1, 2004. Its capital of 280,000 inhabitants is Ljubljana, one of the smaller, most charming, European capitals. It became the capital for all Slovenians in 1918 when the Austro-Hungarian monarchy collapsed. A year later, in 1919, it acquired a university, in 1938 the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, a radio station as early as 1926 and TV in 1957. It had its own Philharmonic in 1701 and its opera exactly one hundred years ago. When the Jesuits came in Ljubljana in the first half of the 17th century, higher education was introduced. At the beginning of the 20th. century the demands for a university in Ljubljana led to the creation of the first institutional organization. In July 1919 the national consciousness and a longstanding desire for the affirmation of the Slovenian language were fulfilled with the establishment of the University of Ljubljana.
The University of Ljubljana hosts the first foreign University Chapter of Mediators Beyond Borders. Ms. Cole works with the students and will meet with them again in October 2008, when she returns to Southeastern Europe to continue teaching mediation. In October 2007, Lynn Cole taught Slovenian judges and mediators Advanced Commercial Mediation in Ljubljana. Sponsored by Department of State, US Embassy, and the National Association of Mediators of Slovenia, the training was a three-day course in Ljubljana, Slovenia for 25 Slovenian Certified Mediators.
The Honorable Judge Gordana Risten is the driving force behind the development of mediation in Slovenia. A powerfully talented mediator and mediation instructor, she and Lynn Cole worked together in Kosovo. The National Association of Mediators in Slovenia formally inducted Ms. Cole as its first foreign Slovenian mediator, an honor she is proud to have received.
The United States Embassy in Ljubljana sponsored Ms. Cole’s course on Advanced Commercial Mediation in October 2008.