University of Alaska Southeast Students Using Disability Services Quintuples from 2008 - Higher Education
Higher Education News and Jobs

University of Alaska Southeast Students Using Disability Services Quintuples from 2008

Email




by Associated Press

JUNEAU, Alaska ―The number of students using disability services at the University of Alaska Southeast is more than five times what it was in 2008.

There were 23 students at the Juneau campus using those services eight years ago, when the Americans with Disabilities Act broadened its definition of disability. Since then, that number has grown to 119 students, according to KTOO-FM.

The upward trend has also been seen at the university’s Anchorage and Fairbanks campuses, but their increases haven’t been as significant.

Margie Thomson, the coordinator of counseling and disability services at UAS, attributes the increase to a larger presence of “hidden” and “temporary” disabilities. She said hidden disabilities are conditions that are not easy to see, such as mental health conditions and learning disabilities, while temporary disabilities are usually the result of injuries that people can recover from.

Thomson began working in disability services the same year the ADA amendment passed. The university added another part-time position to help out on campus about three years ago.

“For me it was awesome. I guess I’ve been a disability rights advocate for a long time,” Thomson said. “It’s been a little tricky sometimes working with all the services in the university. It’s involved more collaboration with facilities for physical accommodations.”

Traci Taylor, who graduated from UAS in May, said she benefited from the school’s disability services.

She said she had been struggling with anxiety and had trouble “keeping things straightened out in my head” when staff allowed her to take tests outside the classroom and recommended she use a smartpen equipped with a microphone to record lectures.

“It’s great to be able to go back and listen to whatever I missed during that time,” Taylor said.

Taylor, who now works in the university’s information technology department, said her test scores improved and school got easier with the university’s help.

University officials could not provide exact dollar figures for what it costs to provide disability services. However, citing fear of violating the ADA, the university sought an additional $250,000 for disability services earlier this year. The Legislature shot down the request.

RELATED ARTICLES >>
Nguyen Draws on Experience to Start Repairing Education Inequities As chief investigator on a recently won $5 million research project, Dr. Thai-Huy Nguyen, partly, will draw from his biography as a boy whose family had been on welfare. He’ll also spotlight what he knows of academia’s failure, in some aspects, to ma...
Court Rules Against Accrediting Agency of ITT Tech, Corinthian Colleges WASHINGTON — The Accrediting Council on Independent Colleges and Schools — the beleaguered accrediting agency that had oversight for two recently collapsed for-profit schools — lost its bid Tuesday to stop the U.S. Department of Education from termin...
West Virginia U. Offers Tuition Incentive to Nursing Students MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — West Virginia University is offering tuition incentives in hopes of increasing the number of highly trained nurses in the state and beyond. The WVU School of Nursing says it will offer in-state tuition for all students — regard...
Smith College Raises Possible Record $486M NORTHAMPTON, Mass. — A private liberal arts college for women says the Massachusetts school has raised a record-high $486 million. The Boston Globe reports Smith College in Northampton announced on Monday its “Women for the World” campaign significa...
Semantic Tags: