Standards of Practice

We are committed to promoting ethical conduct in the Ombuds role. We will foster respect for all members of the campus community and promote fairness in our practices and processes. Consistent with the Standards of Practice provided by the International Ombudsman Association, the following standards have been adopted to reflect the guiding principles we will use to support undergraduate and graduate students, faculty, staff and alumni.


The Ombuds staff operates separately from other University departments, and exercises discretion over whether or how to respond once we have met with the visitor. The Ombuds Office may also initiate action or concern identified through our direct observation.

Neutrality and Impartiality

The Ombuds Staff remains neutral, unaligned, and impartial — not serving as an advocate for a ‘visitor’ or any other party in the conflict. 


No communication with the Ombuds Office will be shared unless we are specifically given permission by the visitor. The only exceptions include situations where there is an imminent risk of serious harm or times when a visitor gives us permission to speak with someone.

Function Relative to Formal Procedures

The Ombuds Staff serves as an informal resource, and will not participate in any formal adjudicative or administrative procedure related to concerns brought to our attention. We will not act as an advocate or witness in any case, or determine or recommend sanctions. The Ombuds Staff augments, but does not replace, formal processes such as a student conduct process.