February 18, 2014

University of Central Florida Signs Ombuds Charter

On January 21, 2014, UCF President John C. Hitt signed a Charter for the Ombuds Office that was established in 1994.  The document asserts that the office (which is "a confidential, neutral, informal, and independent resource to the university community") complies with the Florida statute that requires each university to establish and maintain a student ombudsman (Fla. Stat. § 1006.51.).

The charter also states that the UCF Ombuds Office and the Ombuds Officer will comply with the IOA Standards of Practice. Although she is not a signatory to the document, Shreya Trivedi is the UCF Ombuds Officer. (UCF Ombuds Charter.)

Related posts: University of Central Florida's New Ombuds Posts Video Welcome; Ombuds Offices Flourish in Florida.


  1. Outstanding!!!!

  2. 20 Years with out a charter does not strike me as a outstanding.
    I am glad it has finally happened.
    If you are operating without a charter, TOR, or other supportive document please consider making it a goal for 2014.
    Working with out a charter, distinct from a policy, employment agreement/contract etc., is not in the best interest of you, the comunity you serve, your host institution or the ombuds field.

    John W. Zinsser
    Co-founder and Partner
    Pacifica Human Communications, LLC.
    Adjunct Professor, Negotiation and Conflict Management
    Columbia University

  3. Many Ombuds have inherited offices that were established long before charters were a best practice. Top administrators may have changed and so perhaps have the practices of the office changed. Although an Ombuds office may be practicing to IOA standards, it still probably requires a fair amount of negotiation to implement a charter (especially within a large research university with its many entitled stakeholders). As evidenced by the recent examples of University Ombuds having their programs curtailed, it is no small feat to obtain a charter for an existing program.