Office of the Ombuds

We are here to help you

At Eastern Michigan University, the Ombuds helps students resolve concerns, problems, or conflicts with regards to University policies, procedures, and decisions. The Ombuds provides for an informal and neutral place for students to come to express their concerns. Students work with the Ombuds to identify steps that may be taken to achieve a timely and fair resolution to a problem.

The Ombuds collaborates with others in the University community regarding student concerns and conflict resolution. The Ombuds is interested in adherence to policy, issue resolution and prevention in resolving both academic and non-academic concerns.

Services provided by the Office of the Ombuds are informal and are not documented in student educational records.

What can the Ombuds do for you?

  • Listen and discuss questions, concerns, and complaints of students about the functioning of the university, including policies and procedures, the actions of others, and unfair treatment.
  • Help students develop problem solving skills and promote critical thinking so that students will be better able to act on their own behalf in resolving conflicts.
  • Assist students in evaluating and assessing a variety of options to address their concerns.
  • Answer questions, help students formulate appropriate questions, and find others who can provide the correct answer.
  • Identify problems and conflict areas within the University and recommend improvements.
  • Make referrals for mediation, counseling, and dispute resolution services, and assists in creating a helping network for students.
  • Provide a safe and confidential setting where students feel respected and where they can be candid and forthright.

What the Ombuds cannot do for you:

  • Take part in any formal grievance process, hearing or judicial process.
  • Make administrative or academic decisions for any other part of the University.
  • Assign sanctions.
  • Give legal advice.
  • Accept official "notice" for the University about issues. If someone wishes to put the University "on notice," that is make the University formally aware of a particular problem, we can provide information on how to do so.

Ombuds Code of Ethics

The Ombuds is designated as a neutral and informal third party with the responsibility of protecting any records and files pertaining to discussions from inspection by all other persons unrelated to the resolution process. The Ombuds reserves the right to discuss cases with university officials with a legitimate educational interest, maintaining limited confidentiality within the scope of conflict resolution and the university personnel involved.

When making recommendations or working to resolve conflicts, the Ombuds has the responsibility to facilitate productive conversations regarding suggested actions, university policies, and resolutions equitable to all parties.

The Ombuds should not testify in any formal judicial or administrative hearing about concerns brought to his/her attention.

Submit Your Question or Concern

To submit your question, please fill out our Ombuds Intake Form.

2014-2015 Student Handbook & Policy Guide

Contact Us If You...

  • Have a problem or conflict involving the University and don't know where to go to solve it.
  • Feel your concerns are not being heard.
  • Need information about Policies and Procedures Affecting you at EMU.
  • Believe your rights have been violated or you have not been given due process.
  • Need help to resolve or mediate a dispute.
  • Feel you have been treated unfairly or insensitively or that you are being subjected to intimidating, bullying, or emotionally "toxic" behavior.
  • Think that the University has made an error but has not acknowledged it.
  • Have a death in the family or other personal or family emergency. The ombuds can offer guidance as you notify your instructors, and for contacting family members and other appropriate personnel.

Contact the Ombuds

Dr. Chiara Hensley
University Ombuds
248 Student Center
Phone: 734.487.0074
Fax: 734.483.6515

Office Hours

Monday - Friday: 9:00AM-5PM
Walk-In Service: 10:00AM-4PM
University Ombuds by appointment only