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More about the office

Learn more about the Ombuds role by viewing the documents and information provided below.

What kinds of assistance can the Ombuds provide?

The Ombuds serves as a campus thought partner. You may consult with the Ombuds for help in:

  • Clarifying a situation or experience
  • Determining if a particular policy or process applies
  • Preparing for a difficult conversation
  • Considering alternate perspectives as you think through a dilemma or current conflict with another individual(s)
  • Understanding available options, or next-steps in academic or administrative channels
  • Assessing potential benefits and risks for various courses of action
  • Identifying other campus resources
  • Gaining a familiarity with a formal process you may wish to initiate
  • Approaching others/communicating more effectively when interpersonal conflict or micro-climate concerns arise  
  • Learning where/how to direct concerns while maintaining confidentiality

Why is the Ombuds contacting me?

The Ombuds is a voluntary resource. Visits with the ombuds may not be mandated, nor may services such as facilitated dialogue or informal mediation be required. Ombuds services are typically initiated by student, staff, faculty, or other affiliated visitors; however, the ombuds may reach out to you in a variety of circumstances. Most commonly:

  • At the request of the visitor, when deemed appropriate by the Ombuds and express permission to share specific information has been given, to help facilitate communications with other involved individuals; this may include an ask to gauge interest in a dialogue or mediation opportunity with the visiting party.
  • At the request of the visitor, as above with appropriateness and permission, as a means of apprising you of a visitor concern or experience, when they might not yet be ready to communicate it directly; or perhaps to seek information pertinent to potential resolution.
  • When the Ombuds determines that sharing anonymized data or particulars (with permission) on the emergence of a pattern or trend because, for example, you are situated to implement a procedural change or otherwise address the matter. In other words, providing feedback for your consideration. 
  • When the Ombuds is not empowered to share information by a visitor, but rather to gather information from individuals with insight, you may be contacted.

Thank you for being a welcoming and engaged colleague.