15a: From Amsterdam to Prague: rethinking cooperation as an opportunity to reaching out.
Jorge A. Ribeiro Pereira (Portugal), Josef Leidenfrost (Austria)
Nelson Mandela said "Education is the most powerful weapon we can use to change the world". The authors think that "Cooperation is the most important tool to promote change in the world".
Regarding, (re)viewing and (re)starting our activity as promotors of positive change in higher education, it is relevant to reach out to learn and spread knowledge/good practices.
Erasmus+ framework allow us to foster cooperation and reaching out, and the Léon Declaration also set up a pathway towards this goal.
Jorge A. Ribeiro Pereira: Student Ombudsperson
Josef Leidenfrost: President of ENOHE
15b: Four languages, three cities, two ombudsmen: Insights into how a Twinning Ombuds Team is working
Brent Epperson (Luxembourg), Josef Leidenfrost (Luxembourg)
The University of Luxemburg is a newly founded higher education institution established in 2003. The university has approximately 6,800 students from over 130 countries. In 2021, the university created an ombudsman position to serve students, academic and administrative staff. The institution has four languages of instruction—Luxembourgish, French, English and German—and the latter three serve as its administrative languages. In the effort to be as inclusive as possible, the effort is made to offer student and employee services in these languages. A Charter outlines the services of the ombudsman and relationship with the Board of Governors to whom the ombudsman reports. At present, two part-time ombudsmen offer consultations remotely (by video conference and by telephone) and in-person.
Once a week the ombuds team has either hybrid or electronic meetings with the secretariat of the board of governors in order to identify issues of mutual/common interest and to evaluate routes for alternative dispute resolutions. According to the Charter, the ombudspersons make recommendations to the Board of Governors which are also published in the three administrative languages and accessible to the general public.
This panel will give insights into a multicultural and diverse setting of an ombuds office composed of two ombudsmen from different educational and organisational environments, working as an effective team with different techniques and means of conflict resolution.
Brent Epperson: Ombudsman at the University of Luxembourg
Josef Leidenfrost: Ombudsman at the University of Luxembourg