Ombuds Office for Students & Postdoctoral Appointees
The Ombuds Office can be your first step, your last resort, or anything in between. If you wish assistance sorting through a campus-related conflict or concern, please contact us. The Ombudsperson will listen to your concerns, serve as a sounding board, discuss your options with you, and help you get a new perspective and determine the next steps to take.
The office is strictly confidential and no one will know you have spoken with us unless you wish them to. The only exception to this confidentiality is where there appears to be imminent risk of serious harm or danger.
How the Ombudsperson Helps
You may contact the Ombuds Office at any time during a conflict if you want assistance sorting through the situation. The Ombudsperson will listen, help you come up with next steps, and discuss other resources that might be helpful.
The Ombudsperson DOES:
- Listen impartially and provide unbiased feedback
- Provide a confidential place to discuss complaints and consider options
- Refer students and postdocs to appropriate campus services and resources
- Assist with problem-solving to minimize the escalation of conflict
- Assist people in conflict to develop mutually acceptable outcomes
- Encourage and empower students and postdocs to find their own solutions to problems and concerns
- Coach individuals on how to communicate their concerns non-defensively
The Ombudsperson DOES NOT:
- Advocate for individuals or take sides
- Participate in formal procedures, including legal proceedings
- Keep records identifying individuals who meet with the Ombudsperson
- Serve as an office of notice for the University
- Provide legal advice
- Share information with others without permission
- Keep confidential any imminent risk of serious harm or danger
- Conduct formal investigations or write formal investigative reports
- Change policies or academic and administrative decisions
All UC Berkeley undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral appointees, as well as faculty and staff members who work with these groups, can contact the Student Ombuds Office for assistance. Please call 510-642-5754.