UPDATE: Ombuds is currently on hiatus.

def. ombudsperson (n.), “a person who investigates, reports on, and helps settle complaints” (Merriam-Webster)

Ombuds is a new Swarthmore student organization that aims to facilitate better communication between the Swarthmore administration and student body. This means helping students be heard by staff, and making sure there’s more transparency in how our concerns are handled by the administration. In short, we help find solutions to student complaints.

Zero Obligations to Joining

Get access to our newsletter, invites to administration meetings, student advocacy resources, and much more with zero obligations or expectations. Do what you have time to do, and we don’t expect a single minute more.

How does Ombuds work?

We host meetings with administrators.

Have a question for admin? Have an idea you want to share? Consider joining us at our regular meetings with administrators and staff, open to all students, where you’ll be able to get answers for your pressing questions and make your voice be heard.

We make sure every student can learn what’s going on.

Not every student can make it to every meeting, and not every student gets to learn what happened to their question or idea. No longer: we send out a regular newsletter to your email inbox, letting you know how recent meetings went and what sort of new policies the administration is pursuing.

We provide resources for aspiring student advocates.

Sometimes it feels like an impossible task to figure out how the giant monolith of the Swarthmore administration works. Don’t worry, you’re not alone. That’s why we’ve put together a Resources folder in Google Drive explaining various aspects of the administration and providing crucial info, such as budgetary figures, that are otherwise hard to find or aren’t available anywhere.

Learn More

Before joining Ombuds, be sure to check out our About Us page to get a full sense of what we do!


Learn more about Ombuds, who we are, and how things work inside of our organization. (Hint: we have no executive leadership!)


Joining Ombuds comes with no obligations or expectations but grants you regular updates, advocacy resources, and invites to admin meetings.


Read our archive of newsletters. (This is our first semester, so our archive isn’t up yet.)

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Ombuds a…?

We are not a student government or a labor movement. We perform no executive/governing functions and we do not represent workers. We are communication facilitators, first and foremost.

I have no time; won’t Ombuds make my life harder?

Ombuds is designed for the busy Swarthmore student. You don’t have to do a single thing to remain a member. Anything you choose to do through Ombuds is 100% voluntary. You come first.

Do administrators actually take you seriously?

Yes! We are students well-connected across campus, and we want to put those connections to work for the student body. Administrators have already agreed to appear at our meetings.

Who decides what policies Ombuds supports?

Nobody! That’s the beauty of it: Ombuds doesn’t take policy stances here on campus, but lets you — the student — take those stances for yourself. When you meet with administrators, we’re there only to support you, not to tell you what to think.

I’m interested in X issue. How do I get started?

Join Ombuds and reach out to us! We’ll be glad to point you in the right direction. If you want someone to help you along the path, we’ll be right there to help you schedule meetings, put together a case, and make change.

I’m in! What do I do next?

Check out our About Us page if you haven’t yet, and make your way to our Membership page to sign up! We’re very excited to have you join us.