The Office of the Academic Ombudsman
and Advocate provides all undergraduate students with an impartial,
independent, confidential, safe and informal dispute management and resolution
environment to address questions and concerns about University policies and
procedures. The Ombudsman will advocate for fairness and promote a positive
campus climate and community.
Leatha M. Bennett, Ph.D., Ombuds
Promoting Fairness…Respecting the
Individual…Providing a Safe Place
Dr. Bennett has been a member of the University
community for over 11 years. Prior to becoming the Academic Student Ombudsman,
she was the Director of the Office of Retention and Academic Support. Her
professional areas of expertise include employee counseling, contract
negotiation, informal mediation of group conflicts, and assisting individuals
to develop strategies for conflict resolution. Dr. Bennett serves as Ombudsman
for undergraduate students/community at the University. She is a member of the
International Ombudsman Association.
About the Office
The Office is a component of the Office of Retention and Persistence and exists
as an independent resource for
problem resolution and works to ensure that all members of the undergraduate community
are treated equitably and fairly. The Ombudsman can provide confidential and
informal assistance to help resolve issues related to the undergraduate academic
environment. An undergraduate student who visits the office can discuss issues
and concerns with the Ombudsman without committing to further disclosure or any
formal resolution. The Academic Ombudsman Office provides designated University
administrators with a confidential analysis of all issues brought to her
attention and may recommend a corrective course of action. The Office is guided by the
International Ombudsman Association’s Standards of Practice and Code of Ethics. The Ombudsman is confidential,
independent, and neutral.
To make a confidential appointment with the Ombuds, please
call 256.372.5491 or send a confidential email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The Ombuds will not handle third party
questions you must make direct contact with the Ombuds.
The services of the Ombudsman do not replace formal
grievance processes at the University; rather, they are an additional option.
Therefore, students are encouraged to resolve university concerns by contacting
the campus office responsible for the area relevant to the complaint. If
dissatisfied with the response, the student may contact the relevant area
supervisor, director, department chair, or dean for resolution.
Where Can I
Find The Ombudsman?
The office is located in Thomas Hall.
Office of the Academic
Office hours: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, or other times by
Alabama A&M University
Normal, AL 35762