Case Examples


From the NC State Faculty Ombuds Office:

1. Faculty member serving on a committee tasked with resolving program issues asked for input and conflict resolution training to help group determine how to revise program. Met with group leadership and developed training sessions to support process redesign.

2. Department Head sought assistance with internal faculty issues of concern. Set up process that included individual faculty member meetings, summary of issues shared faculty wide, and ongoing facilitation with small working group to address certain issues.

3. Faculty member concerned that a promised base salary adjustment, in part based on additional responsibilities, was not going to be completed due to bonus payment. Provided information describing the bonus and helped faculty member consider how to approach the situation.

4. Faculty member working on software related project with intellectual property concerns. Project work included various forms and contributions including student, contractor, and various locations. Faculty Ombuds made confidential contact with Office of Institutional Research and Office of General Counsel to inquire about the issues raised. Provided general information and process information and contacts for faculty member to pursue as determined.

5. Faculty member working on grant submission concerned about level of college research office support. Reviewed steps taken to date and developed plan for additional steps. Faculty member commented that issues surrounding the situation made it feel like a “cloud of isolation” and talking it over and “thinking about options” helped clear the air.

6. Faculty member contacted Faculty Ombuds due to perceived personal safety issue within department. Situation reviewed and referral made to the BAT (Behavioral Assessment Team) for information and support. BAT team determined review was warranted, investigated the situation, and determined there was no safety issue.

7. Faculty member program director contacted Faculty Ombuds for assistance obtaining member feedback. A process for obtaining feedback including direct Faculty Ombuds contact was developed. Program members contacted and shared information with the Faculty Ombuds that was then shared with faculty member while maintaining the confidentiality of the contact. Program director instituted various changes based on feedback to rebuild communications and productivity.

8. Faculty member participated, but did not vote in DVF and was concerned about confidentiality of voting outcome. Determined that confidentiality of DVF ballot explanation may need additional clarification and passed on issue to leadership for review.

9. Faculty member wanted personnel file action removed as did not think it was appropriate. Action taken based on interactions with a colleague that faculty member felt not able to work with due to approach and actions. Provided faculty member with information and coaching to pursue options.

10. Faculty member with adult diagnosis of mental health condition was concerned about impact on ability to do job and was considering disability filing. Faculty member wanted information without specifically alerting HR to situation. Faculty Ombuds made confidential contact with HR to determine how filing for disability worked and provided faculty member with information and support in order to determine next steps.

11. Recording of religious service and issues surrounding the recording outside of work brought the issue of recording faculty lectures. Reviewed with Office of General Counsel and provided information to faculty member, i.e., lectures may not be recorded without permission (Reg 02.20.11).

12. Faculty member concerned about RPT review and wanted to discuss SME. Provided information from Office of Faculty Development articulating the interplay between SME, Department, and College standards. Helped faculty member clarify concerns and develop options and referral for how to proceed.