Ombudsperson services are available to all students.
Undergraduate, graduate, and professional students may call Ada Gregory in the Office of Interdisciplinary Programs at 919-684-6334.
School of Medicine students and faculty may contact
Dr. Jean Spaulding at 919-668-3326.
Faculty members should contact Dr. Jeffrey Dawson at 919-613-7811.
The Ombudsperson Role
- Provides a neutral, safe, and confidential environment to talk (confidentiality may not extend beyond campus proceedings)
- Listens to concerns and complaints and discusses appropriate options
- Helps to evaluate those options
- Assists students in resolving problems
- Mediates conflicts, convenes meetings, engages in "shuttle diplomacy"
- Refers students to appropriate campus resources
- Provides information about university resources
What the Ombudsperson Does NOT Do
- Adjudicate or participate in formal university grievance processes
- Determine guilt of any party in a dispute
- Get involved in any formal litigation or testify in court
- Provide legal advice
- Assign sanctions to individuals
- Replace the function of any official university office, department or process
- Keep records of students and/or conversations
Examples of Services Provided by an Ombudsperson
- Helps resolve or mediate a dispute with an individual or group.
- Helps decide how to approach a person who you think is causing a problem.
- Discusses how to approach a fellow student who has made an offensive or insensitive comment.
- Assists when you are uncertain what Duke policies or procedures apply to your situation.
- Assists when you don't know what individual or university department is appropriate to go to for an answer to a specific question or to obtain a particular service.
- Helps when you feel as if you have been unfairly treated by anyone on campus.
- Engages in "shuttle diplomacy" to solve a problem between you and a student/employee.
- Helps you evaluate and select among a variety of options to address a concern with a fellow student or department
- Helps resolve or mediate a non-grade- or non-evaluation-related dispute with a faculty member.