Our mission is to promote and support a positive and productive working, learning and living environment for the entire Vandal community by improving communication, addressing problems and preventing and resolving conflicts that emerge within the university.
Other services that are available for assistance include:
- General university policy questions: Faculty Secretary/Policy Coordinator, 208-885-6151
- Employee Assistance, 208-885-3697
- Student Counseling, 208-885-6716
- After hours crisis hotline, 208-885-6716
What makes the Ombuds Office different
The Ombuds Office provides a confidential, impartial, informal and independent place to discuss university-related concerns, access information, clarify policies and procedures, discuss response options and get problem-solving assistance. Those using ombud's services can remain anonymous, if they choose, and in control over what, if any, actions are taken.
The Ombuds Office operates according to the International Ombudsman Association (IOA) Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice.
A positive choice
People working, learning and living together in any organization can expect from time to time that differences in perceptions and opinions, communication and interpersonal style, and needs and values will emerge. At times, these differences — while normal and predictable — may lead to unintended tension or conflict and negatively impact relationships. Ombuds use collaborative problem solving to:
- Focus on the issues, not people or personalities
- Identify creative and constructive solutions
- Facilitate or mediate difficult conversations
- Repair or support important relationships
- Return attention and energy to work or studies
When to contact an Ombuds
Use of the Ombuds Office is encouraged when problems arise and individuals are unsure of their options and/or need assistance identifying and pursuing solutions.
Requesting assistance from and responding to the Ombuds Office are regarded as constructive actions that help foster a positive university culture and climate. The Faculty-Staff Handbook states that "the university prohibits any employee or student from discouraging or limiting another employee from accessing the office, or intimidating, threatening, coercing, retaliating, or discriminating against any individual because that individual raised an issue or participated in dispute resolution through the office..." [see FSH 3820 A-5]