Laura Smythe Selected as University of Idaho Ombuds
June 22, 2018
The University of Idaho and the Office of the President are pleased to announce that Laura Smythe has been appointed university ombuds effective Oct. 2.
Smythe has served as a contract ombuds and mediator for multiple organizations and has a background as an attorney, university faculty member and executive director of a mediation center.
She has most recently worked with the University of Wisconsin School of Law and as a culture and conflict management consultant for corporate and government clients.
The university Ombuds Office provides confidential, impartial and independent counsel for university-related concerns. The office also helps resolve and prevent conflicts, clarifies policies and procedures, discusses response options and provides options for problem-solving assistance.
Smythe comes to U of I from Wisconsin, where she serves as a consultant and the founder of Communication Connections and contracts with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services to train workers in mediation and communication skills. She also serves as director of pro bono programming for the University of Wisconsin School of Law. Smythe holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Wisconsin School of Law, two Master of Art degrees in Latin American Studies and Political Science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish from the College of Wooster in Ohio.
Until Smythe's arrival, faculty, staff and students in need of services typically provided by the ombuds can seek out help from Human Resources, the Office of the Dean of Students, Housing and Residence Life, the Counseling and Testing Center and the Employee Assistance Program.
About the University of Idaho
The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, nine research and Extension centers, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to nearly 11,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky and Western Athletic conferences. Learn more at uidaho.edu