Disability and Accessibility Services

Prospective Students

Applicants who identify themselves as having a disability during the admissions process are considered for admission on the same competitive basis as other applicants. The Coordinator of Student Access Services, in the Office for Student Academic Services, is available to talk with prospective students with disabilities. Students and their parents should bear in mind that Skidmore has no formal disabilities program. The Coordinator of Student Access Services acts as a resource for students who believe that they require modifications and/or accommodations on campus and in the classroom. If a student anticipates requesting academic accommodations at Skidmore, s/he should be prepared to provide documentation confirming the presence of a specific disability and demonstrating its impact on academic and/or other areas of college functioning. It is important to note that accommodations given in high school, either by a 504 plan on IEP, do not automatically carry over into college.

After they enroll, all students receive a copy of Applying for Accommodations/Services at Skidmore College. Students with a documented disability are invited to complete the application and return it with the required documentation to the Coordinator of Student Access Services. The application form and documentation requirements are also available on this website. The documentation is reviewed to determine if the student meets ADA and Skidmore College eligibility criteria for identification as "a student with an educational disability." If the student's documentation is conclusive, the Coordinator will work with the student to determine which accommodations requested are reasonable for the college setting — accommodations that are sometimes different from those provided in the student's high school. The Coordinator then prepares a Memo of Academic Accommodations, which identifies the student as disabled (but does not state the type of disability) and lists the accommodations s/he is entitled to receive for the semester. The student presents these letters to his/her instructors at the start of each semester. First-year students with disabilities attend individual meetings with the Coordinator of Student Access Services, typically during the first few weeks of classes, where Semester Memos and other services and supports are discussed in detail. As at all colleges, the success of disabilities support at Skidmore depends significantly on the student's willingness and ability to seek the help s/he needs and to follow through with academic and other recommendations.

In addition to the more specialized assistance available in the Office of Student Academic Services, Skidmore provides an excellent range of support services for the general student population, services that may also be of help to students with disabilities. These services include a writing center, a math and computer science laboratory, a foreign language laboratory, peer tutoring for many courses offered by the College, and a counseling center. The Coordinator can also provide names of professional tutors in Saratoga Springs.

Applicants should bear in mind that all Skidmore students must be committed to fulfilling foreign language, expository writing, mathematics, laboratory science, and all other core and major requirements of the Skidmore curriculum. Since the curriculum represents Skidmore's definition of a sound liberal arts education, requirements are never waived. Under a few very exceptional circumstances, the College may consider substituting a course or courses for a particular curriculum requirement. In such instances, students talk first with the Coordinator to determine whether their documentation indicates difficulties of the type and magnitude that would prohibit them from achieving the goals of the requirement. There is nothing automatic in the course substitution process, and the College holds final authority in determining degree requirements.

Students or parents who have further questions about support for students with disabilities at Skidmore should contact the Office of Student Academic Services, at either (518) 580-8150 or Meg Hegener, Coordinator of Student Access Services, (518) 580-8161, email mhegener@skidmore.edu.

~ Office of Student Academic Services, revised August, 2005 ~