What does the Ombudsman do?

The Ombudsman provides assistance to help manage and resolve workplace and/or academic issues.  The Ombudsman can offer neutral and impartial perspective; provide a respectful, confidential place for individuals to discuss problems; help clarify issues and interests, identify goals and develop and consider a range of options; coach visitors in written and verbal communications; explain relevant University policies and practices; provide referrals to other offices and services; look into problems by gathering data and the perspective of others; assist in resolving interpersonal conflict; engage in shuttle diplomacy; facilitate one-on-one and group conversations, or be present in a discussion as a neutral.  The Ombudsman can help the visitor weigh options and develop strategies—but it is the visitor’s decision about what to do next.  A visitor can discuss concerns with the Ombudsman without committing to further disclosure, taking action, or seeking formal resolution. 

The Office also provides information to University leadership on general trends and patterns of complaints without breaching confidentiality so that problems may be prevented from escalating or recurring.