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Office of the Ombudsperson

A confidential, impartial, informal and independent resource for navigating life at Northwestern.

Welcome to the Office of the Ombudsperson


What is an ombudsperson?

Northwestern's ombudsperson can play a key role in resolving concerns and working through issues. She provides confidential and informal assistance for resolving university-related concerns, is independent of the university's formal administrative structure, and considers all sides of an issue in a impartial manner.

Meet Ombudsperson Sarah Klaper

Ombuds Services

The ombudsperson serves the entire Northwestern community, including students, faculty and staff.

Services include facilitating communication, providing referrals and consulting on conflict resolution and University policies and procedures.

What We Can Do

We give you the opportunity to discuss and resolve problems outside of formal channels. The ombudsperson will:

  • Listen.
  • Provide information that relates to your situation.
  • Suggest options available to you.
  • Mediate.
  • Facilitate "difficult conversations.”
  • Help you find a path forward.
  • Help you understand policies and procedures that apply to you.

What We Cannot Do

While the university ombudsperson provides an effective and valuable service, they cannot do certain things, including:

  • Give legal advice.
  • Conduct formal investigations.
  • Change rules, policies or procedures.

Contact Us

We're looking forward to working with you.

Visit our office at 555 Clark St., Suite 209, Evanston. Office hours are 8:30 am - 5 pm, with additional appointments available upon request. Call us at (847) 467-2430.

Email Us at

Land Acknowledgment

The Northwestern campus sits on the traditional homelands of the people of the Council of Three Fires, the Ojibwe, Potawatomi, and Odawa as well as the Menominee, Miami and Ho-Chunk nations. It was also a site of trade, travel, gathering and healing for more than a dozen other Native tribes and is still home to over 100,000 tribal members in the state of Illinois.

We are committed to honoring the contributions of Native American and Indigenous people to the Northwestern community and to educating ourselves, our colleagues, and partners about what we can all do to center and uplift Native American and Indigenous people and their communities.

View Northwestern University’s complete Land Acknowledgment and resources.