Post Classifieds

People with disabilities can still receive an education

Accommodate yourself here

By Keio Horton
On October 10, 2012

If you're a student in college and you have a disability, you don't have to deal with it alone. There is a department that can help anyone with any kind of disability called the Student Accommodations Office.

"We are the department that provides accommodations to the students on campus that have a disability," said Brian Weiland, Disability Specialist.

Since 1983, the Student Accommodations Office has helped over 900 students with a wide variety of disabilities. This department provides a large amount of resources to help out the students.
"We have a lot of great computer programs that really aid our students," said Maggie Balck, Disability Specialist. A few of the resources consist of computer programs that can help people with reading and hearing disabilities. But two of the most known resources of Student Accommodations are the Smart Pen and the Note Takers programs. Student Accommodations provides a Note Takers program for people with physical disabilities or for those who can't write at all.
Every semester, Student Accommodations gets a number of students who have disabilities that prevent them from taking notes in class. "It's important for us to have note takers. Not every student can use a Smart Pen. Some of them, due to a physical disability, may not be able to write, so they can tape record the class but they need someone to take the notes for them." said Jenny Blanchard, Administrator Assistant.

Any student on campus can become a note taker, they just have to be informed in the classroom by their instructor. Then go to the Student Accommodations Office with their notes and they will photocopy them.
The office will provide those photocopied notes to a student who needs those specific notes. Being a note taker can be a huge benefit for your financial aid. You can receive a decent amount of money for taking notes in class. You can receive a total of $50 for volunteering as a note taker. It  is  important to have more note takers volunteer in Student Accommodations.

When you ask to become a note taker, you are not only helping a student with a disability; you are also helping yourself.
Student Accommodations also provides the students with a device called a Smart Pen. The Smart Pen, which was introduced 2 to 3 years ago, is a very useful device for taking notes in the class. It's also perfect for people with hearing disabilities who can't hear what the teacher is saying. They can record what the teacher is saying and play it back to write what they had missed.

"We're making this available for students with disabilities-some students just want the indepen-dence and the responsibility of taking their own notes," said Cathy Bohte, Coordinator/Faculty. The smart pen is a very valuable resource for students.
The Student Accommodations Office can be a huge benefit for a student with a disability.

Their goal is to give a student the same opportunity for a career as a student without a disability.
The department tries to  help the student-feel they belong with everybody in the school and not feel left out. Students with disabilities can be successful in life despite the additional challenges.


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