Center for Students with Disabilities provides equal opportunities

Kylie Jacobs, Staff Reporter

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In 1988, the month of October was dedicated by the United States Congress asDisability Awareness Month. It was created to help raise awareness for both employment and contributions of individuals with all types of disabilities.

At the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, the Center for Students with Disabilities provides that contribution for all individuals. The Center provides services to students with disabilities to provide access to college programs. They offer accommodations with counseling, evaluation referral, academics, interpreter services, and so much more.

Their mission is to be partners in creating an accessible learning community where students with disabilities have an equal opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of an educational experience. They promote student’s independence and recognition of their ability, not their disability.

Interim Director Debbie Reuter says “ It’s about providing support to both students and faculty, as well as helping faculty understand what accommodations are necessary for the students, how they can help them be successful. That every student who comes through the Center for Students with Disabilities is recognized as Whitewater students, just like every other Whitewater student”

The Center for Students with Disabilities helps those with temporary disabilities, along with permanent ones as well. From a student having a torn ACL to one with ADHD, there are available accommodations for all of them.

“Being able to get these accommodations and still have, like, that normal education everyone else gets is so meaningful, it shows how much they care,” says student Margaret Robinson.

The University of Wisconsin Whitewater is the leading college in serving students with disabilities , as they serve more than any comprehensive institution in Wisconsin. In a report by the UWSA Annual Services for Students With Disabilities, it was found that Whitewater served 4,930 students in the years from 2013-2017, which was 1,385 more students than the second leading school, UW-Stout.

“We are extremely fortunate,” says Reuter, “that the University of Whitewater has a mission to serve those with disabilities, it’s part of our history, it’s valued by the community here, so we don’t really ever have issues of people understanding how to serve these students.”

To be able to receive these accommodations, students need to fill out the application, found on their website (uww.edu/csd), and be able to provide the appropriate documentation needed. These documents must be submitted in a timely manner, and these documents need to be specific in the student disability and their accommodations.

“Our website has a ton of information, so we normally send students there first when it comes to questions, then we help with the more specific questions,” says Sara Vogt, a disability services coordinator.

The Center has been committed since 1968 to help students with accommodations, and today it provides plentiful programs to help students, from facility to transportation to programs.

For more information, be sure to check out their website, uww.edu/csd, or stop by the Center for Students with Disabilities located in room 2002 of the Andersen Library.