Friday 29 August 2008

Office for Persons with Disabilities!

Office for Persons with Disabilities!

There are two types of people who should use the Office for Persons with Disabilities - those who have long term or permanent conditions, such as physical, or learning disabilities and the second class is those who have short term conditions, such as an injury while on campus, that will prevent them from doing their best academically.

The office room 1132 Needles Hall is open and welcoming. If you think you need their help, stop by and they can inform you of all the services they can provide and who has access to them. The office provides support for students, faculty, staff and campus visitors by providing: to whom they provide Information, Academic accommodations, support services.

If you come to the University with a pre-diagnosed learning disability or physical disability, then you will already be aware of your required accommodations, such as alternative texts (Braille, audio, electronic), or alternative exams formats like writing on a computer, extra time, writing in isolation. If you have a physical limitation then the office can help set you up, with on-campus transportation between classes, note-taker, and more. Also if you qualify for OSAP then there is a grant to help with adaptive equipment and the OPD can assist you in applying for this grant. But in order to use these services you will need to provide documentation from a medical
professional, meet with an advisor to register at the OPD, complete your forms (each term) and then introduce yourself to your professor to have him/her sign off on any special accommodations. If you do plan on registering with the OPD do it early, because it takes at least seven days to process requests for special exam considerations.

Now the second category of people who will use the OPD are those who have short-term assistance needs. If you break your leg and need assistance getting around campus, or you break your arm and cannot take notes, then the OPD can help you to make it through those trying times that life can throw at you. The office is there to help, and if you think you need it check. If they are not the ones to help you in your situation they might be able to help refer you or recommend another service on campus that can help.

The OPD also provides a slew of other services, from adaptive technologies labs in the David Center and Dana Porter Libraries, to offering seminars and support groups. The OPD website also has a number of resources. From their sidebar there are links to the OPD Student handbook, Ontarians with Disabilities Act and other online resources. So whatever your special needs are they can assist. So stop by even just to say hi and check out some of the seminars and groups that are offered to help make your time at UW more of a success.

(First Published in Imprint 2008-08-29 in the Frosh Supplement as 'Calling for Backup: The facts about the office for persons with disabilities'.)


Anonymous said...

Hi there,

This is a wonderful image, do you know if it is subject to copyright? I am organising a conference on inclusive education (Article 24 UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities) and would really like to use the image on our posters.

SRMcEvoy said...

You would need to contact UW Special Needs to find out.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info. I've dropped an email, hopefully they will have no objections.

Great site btw, keep up the good work!