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A Note from ACCESS (Accommodations, Consultation, Collaboration, and Educational Support Services)

September 18th, 2013

Students with disabilities or those who suspect a diagnosis can find resources in ACCESS. We work with upwards of 1,000 students each semester to provide accommodations like notetaking, exam proctoring, interpreting, removing residential or programmatic barriers, and disability related advising.

Disability advising centers around when and/or how to disclose, understanding your diagnosis, coaching on having conversations about accommodations, planning accommodations in future settings – study abroad, internships, advanced degrees, the workplace, etc.

ACCESS works with students who have any kind of disability, diagnosis or condition, including: Chronic pain, Attention Deficit Disorder, Lupus, Anxiety, Diabetes, Depression, Hearing Loss, Crohn’s, Eating Disorders, Learning Disability, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Allergies

We can provide accommodations in many different ways such as: Classes, residential halls, events/activities/programming, clinicals, internships, study abroad, licensing/placement exams, etc. The Office of Institutional Research shows that students who begin working with ACCESS in their first semester tend to graduate in 4 years with a higher overall GPA. This may be because students feel they have a stronger support network and ways they can equal the playing field.

As one student stated in our May 2013 survey:

“Before I met with my ACCESS specialist I thought my grades and dreams were doomed. I had no idea how many options were available or what a huge difference they would make in my studies. I have gone from a C to an A average in one semester. The ACCESS services have been the most important positive change in my academic career. Thank you for all that you do.”

Our Senior Exit Interviews are another way we gain feedback from students who have used our services. We ask the following question of graduating seniors:

What advice would you give to incoming students who choose to use ACCESS?
The answer year after year can be summed up with: Use ACCESS early and often!

Other reasons to use ACCESS:

  • Opportunities for scholarships, internships, part and full time work
  • Understanding your rights as a person with a disability
  • Participating in workshops, stress relievers and/or Disability Awareness Month

Things to know about working with ACCESS:
If you know you have a disability/diagnosis/condition:

  • Submit documentation
  • Come to ACCESS at the beginning of each semester to help make your academic transition go smoothly.

If you suspect you may have a diagnosis and want to learn more about pursuing an evaluation:

If you have any questions about our services or process for accommodations, please feel free to come by our office at A170, Living Learning [across from Alice’s] or email us at access@uvm.edu. Also, please visit us online.

We look forward to working with you!

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