Ombuds Services for Graduate Education

Ombuds Services for Graduate Education

The Graduate Ombuds Officer advocates for the fair processes of graduate education and provides equal, open access to all parties: graduate and professional students, staff, faculty, and administrators. The university is a large and complex institution, and graduate and professional students often play multiple roles (e.g., student, research collaborator, teacher, technician, and peer).  Misunderstandings and conflicts can arise in any one of these roles.  Having a confidential conversation with an Ombuds Officer can be a first step if you do not know where to turn. The Ombuds Officer serves as an informal, independent, neutral, and confidential resource for persons to discuss questions and concerns related to graduate education.

The Graduate Ombuds Officer is guided and informed by the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice of the International Ombudsman Association.

The Ombuds Officer can:

  • Listen, and help you achieve a greater understanding of the problem.
  • Help you find information applicable to your situation and identify possible solutions to your problem.
  • Explain University policies and procedures and how they apply to your specific case.
  • Help you identify options for managing conflicts with colleagues, staff, faculty, and advisors.
  • Help you achieve fair and equitable solutions to problems.
  • Facilitate communication among people in conflict through mediation, facilitated dialogues, and the like.
  • Provide other types of assistance to help you resolve a problem informally.
  • Refer you to formal grievance or appeal procedures if you wish to engage in a formal process.

Contact information for Ombuds Services:

Office of Graduate and Professional Studies