DIVERSITY, INCLUSION, JUSTICE, AND EQUITY
Ombuds are designated persons within the SOE and the University with whom students and faculty can confidentially raise questions, complaints and concerns about the climate and functioning of the SOE or U-M and about academic or workplace issues they may have encountered. The ombuds offer informal dispute resolution services, provide resources and referrals, and help students consider options available to them. The ombuds do not advocate for either side in a dispute. Instead, the ombuds are impartial advocates for fair and consistent treatment.
What does an ombuds do?
- Hears and discusses your concerns, and identifies options for resolving problems
- Helps you to open productive avenues of communication
- Serves as a neutral mediator to solve problems and resolve conflict, striving for fairness, equitable solutions and adherence to university policies
- Provides information about SOE policies and may refer you to other SOE or university services and programs such as formal grievance or complaint procedures
- Maintains your privacy and ensures confidentiality
Why may a confidential conversation be especially helpful if you are experiencing a problem or concern?
- In a confidential setting, the ombuds can offer a safe space and the freedom to talk about especially sensitive situations that you may not yet be comfortable sharing with others.
- As a confidential resource, without a duty to report student concerns, it is up to the student or faculty visitor to decide whether and how to proceed in any situation.
- Confidentiality can allow the ombuds to collect information (with the student's or faculty member's permission) and explore options without revealing the identity of the student or faculty member.
If you or someone you know would benefit from a confidential conversation, please contact the SOE ombud.
Mary J. Schleppegrell
Professor and SOE Ombuds
As a student and faculty ombuds, Mary is an impartial advocate for fair and consistent treatment offering informal dispute resolution services, provides resources and referrals, and helps both students and faculty consider options available to them. A student and faculty ombuds has no formal decision-making authority.
Office of the Ombuds
Alternatively or additionally, you can contact U-M's Office of the Ombuds
U-M's Office of the Ombuds is a place where student questions, complaints and concerns about the functioning of the university can be discussed confidentially in a safe environment. The office offers informal dispute resolution services, provides resources and referrals, and helps students consider options available to them. The office has no formal decision-making authority.