Disability Services at SUNY Empire State College

By Allison Quinn, student, SUNY Empire State College

September 15, 2017

The students of SUNY Empire State College have diverse life experiences but share in their pursuit of a fulfilling and meaningful education. It is not unlikely that students entering college have disabilities or illnesses that may have caused past challenges, but this does not mean that these students’ goals cannot be reached.  Administrators, faculty, and staff do not want students’ disabilities to be barriers to their education and success in college. At Empire State College, The Office of Collegewide Disability Services is available to help and support students with disabilities by arranging and executing accommodations that will create equal learning environments.

In the Disability Services section on the college website, the Office of Collegewide Disability Services states, “Our mission is to offer all students with disabilities an equal opportunity for success in their college experience... The resources offered through the Office of Collegewide Disability Services provide equal access to all college services, studies, programs and activities by ensuring that reasonable accommodations are determined and implemented in an appropriate manner.” desire

Within the Disability Services section, you can access the Office of Collegewide Disability Services Handbook. The Office of Collegewide Disability Services writes, “The information provided in this student handbook is designed to assist students with disabilities to make decisions and progress through their studies by identifying and requesting reasonable accommodations that would provide equal access to all college services, studies, programs and activities.” In addition to providing the online handbook, the Office of Collegewide Disability Services has provided informational pages like an FAQ and other links for forms and student resources. Here, you can find the link to Register with Disability Services and Request Accommodations You can also follow a link to Contact Your Center Disability Representative; each center has a person who works specifically with people seeking disability services. Your disability representative can answer questions and guide you through the process of obtaining accommodations.

The Office of Collegewide Disability Services reminds students that while SUNY Empire State College will take the steps, and follow all the laws and regulations, to provide an equal education for a student with a disability, it is the responsibility of the student to seek these disability services and provide the necessary documents to the school. If you believe you may have a disability but have not been diagnosed, read What If I Suspect I Have a Disability?  in the Disability Services section for suggestions on who to reach out to for a professional opinion or a proper screening. It is the student’s responsibility to seek and pay for these professional consultations.

The American Psychological Association reminds people, “Disability does not discriminate.”; Disability or illness can happen to anyone at any point in his or her life. If you are a student with a disability, your personal and professional goals do not have to be compromised. Using the Office of Collegewide Disability Services at SUNY Empire State College is a way for you to advocate for yourself and ensure that you are receiving the equal education you are legally entitled to.

Register with Disability Services and request the accommodations that will lead to a more successful and accessible academic year.

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SUNY Empire State College Welcomes our new Provost David Bejou, Ph.D, By Suzanne Lazar ’17, student, School for Graduate Studies; editor, The Student Connection

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Article Contributors

Brandon Aldous

Zohreh Aminian

Danielle Boardman

Suzanne Lazar

Allison Quinn

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