The Office of the Student Ombudsman provides information, advice, referrals and intervention to students at SDSU. The Student Ombudsman is a student-focused resource who supports students in addressing and resolving concerns or issues that may arise within the University.
Examples of situations brought to the Student Ombudsman:
- Faculty/Staff conflict
- Financial Aid
- Fee Disputes
- Campus Housing
- Late withdrawals/adds/drops
- Grade Appeals
Do I have to bring anything to my appointment with the Student Ombudsman?
No. When you come into the office, we will give you an intake form to fill out before you meet with the Student Ombudsman. You can do this the day of your appointment or pick it up beforehand if you like. If you have documents that are relevant to your complaint, such as a course syllabus, official SDSU letters, copies of petitions, etc., please bring them with you and we will make copies. If you are out of town and will be meeting with the Student Ombudsman by phone, we can email or fax you the intake form and you can send it and any relevant documents back to us by fax or by mail.
About the Student Ombudsman’s Office
Dr. Darrell Hess was appointed Student Ombudsman in San Diego State University's Division of Student Affairs in December 2018. Hess is a seasoned higher education professional with more than 20 years of experience in Student Affairs leadership, management, budgeting and classroom instruction. He believes that Student Affairs is essential in providing the high-impact experiences that help students connect their classroom experiences and theories to the world beyond university life.
Prior to his role as Student Ombudsman, Hess served as SDSU's director of Student Health Services, associate director in the Office of Housing Administration and associate director in the Office of Residential Education. Before joining SDSU, Hess was the assistant director of Residential Education at DePaul University in Chicago. He also had worked at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.
Hess has a doctorate in Education Leadership from the University of California San Diego and California State University San Marcos. His dissertation topic was "Social Capital and the Learning Experience in Residential Learning Communities." Hess also has a bachelor of science degree in business administration from the University of Alabama, a master of education degree from the University of Georgia and an associate of science degree in liberal arts from Northwest Alabama State Junior College.
Administrative Support Coordinator
Karla is the Administrative Support Coordinator and often, the initial point of contact in the Office of the Student Ombudsman. She started working as a student assistant for the office in 1998 while completing her degree at SDSU and has since continued working as a staff member of the campus community. Karla obtained a Bachelor's degree in Psychology and a Master's of Arts degree in Postsecondary Educational Leadership with a Specialization in Student Affairs from San Diego State University in 2001 and 2009 respectively.
She enjoys working with the students and members of the University community that contact the Office of the Student Ombudsman seeking assistance, directions to the appropriate department on campus, or just need to “vent” away their frustration.
Karla also serves as the Student Grievance Committee Secretary.