February 16, 2023

Kennesaw State's Summer Institute Marks 25 Years, Expands Ombuds Workshops

Kennesaw State University will hold its 25th annual Summer Institute for Professional Development returns as an in-person event this year. Hosted by the KSU Center for Conflict Management, the Summer Institute will include a three-day Ombuds Workshop with five different sessions—the most ever offered. Registration is now open for the event in June.

The Ombuds Workshop includes:
  • Managing Conflicts on Campus: Ombuds, Mediation, or Both?
    Facilitator: Akanmu Adebayo, Ombuds, Kennesaw State University
    Mediation v. ombuds. Increasingly, complex conflicts in organizations require the deployment of one, two, or multiple conflict resolution approaches. Which approach should a campus support? Can and should an ombuds mediate? What would the outcome look like if the same issues were brought before a mediator or an ombuds? The workshop explores these and other questions on the theme: "mediation v. ombuds." Ombuds Time: 12:45pm 4:00pm
  • Special Tools for Ombuds to Use in their Careers: Providing Upward Feedback and Fostering DEIB through Photovoice
    Facilitator: Birthe Reimers, Ombuds, Georgia State University
    Ombuds offices provide safe and confidential spaces where visitors can share their experiences and determine ways to manage conflicts informally (Hollis, 2021). Staple Ombuds services include one-on-one consultation, coaching, information gathering, policy clarification, facilitated conversations and group dialogues, shuttle diplomacy, referrals to campus resources, recommendations for institutional action, and conflict resolution training. At times, however, the methods of engagement for Ombuds offices (OOs) require additional creativity when addressing conflict (Howard, 2020). Photovoice (PV), which combines photography and dialogue, is an answer to this call as it engages participants in a unique form of self-advocacy that is mutually beneficial for the university and the project participants.
  • Gossip’s Hidden Virtues: How Ombuds Use Gossip as a Catalyst for Change
    Facilitators: Elizabeth Schwartz Hill, CO-OP, Ombuds, University of Colorado Boulder; Teresa RalickiCO-OP, Founder Ombuds Institute, Pinterest
    What is gossip? Why do we do it? And how can ombuds use it to help their constituents and organizations? Join the conversation and discuss how ombuds can create order out of chaos by working with, and learning from, gossip. It’s an art, not a science.
  • Trends Over Time; How Ombuds Work is Evolving
    Facilitator: Jennifer S. Schneider, CO-OP, University of South Florida
    The ombuds profession is relatively new and still evolving. In what ways has ombuds work changed over time? Do the practices of new ombuds mirror those of more experienced ombuds? Are ombuds practices across sectors consistent? This session will explore core ombuds practices that have remained unchanged and will also consider the nuances of the work which may vary. Discussions will be informed by data collected by the International Ombuds Association and personal accounts of both new and experienced ombuds. Participants will engage in active discussion about their own practices and consider implications for the future of the profession.
  • Cutting Edge Topics in Ombudsing
    Facilitators: T. Brian Green, CO-OP, Associate Ombuds, Emory University; Sofia Trelles, Ombudsperson, Florida International University
    This interactive workshop provides Ombuds the opportunity to engage and collaborate with practioners in the field on current topics. Facilitator's will divide people into groups, pick a topic then brainstorm and discuss ideas. Groups will come together and discuss as a large group. Topics will be provided at the time of the workshop by the facilitators.
More information is now online and registration is open. (KSU Summer Institute.)

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