DRC Update by suchenfz


									                          DRC Update
                              Southern Connecticut State University
              Disability Resource Center ― Summer/Fall 2008 Newsletter

     Coordinator Retires: A Farewell - Reflections and Fond Memories
                                                          compared with the virtual sea change that oc-
                             It is hard to believe        curred on this campus, and the larger community,
                              that most of the stu-       in how we now view and respond to disability
                              dents currently served      matters.
                              by the DRC were not
                              even born when I was                 As I reflect on these past twenty-eight
                              first hired to develop      years, this campus has indeed come a long way in
                              Southern’s new disability   its collective understanding of the role and rightful
                              services program in Au-     place of all persons with disabilities. Over these
                              gust 1980. In the begin-    years, there have been four major milestones
                              ning, the office was        worth noting. First, the growth in the number of
                              called the “Office for      students with disabilities attending and graduating
Suzanne Tucker, Retiring      Services for the Dis-       from Southern, the increasing use of technology,
Coordinator of the Disability
                              abled” …quite a mouth-      both in and out of the classroom, the greater
Resource Center
                              ful. A short time later,    awareness and understanding of disability from a
we became the DSS, “Disabled Student Services.”           social vs. medical model of viewing disability, and
Next, we were the DRO, “Disability Resource Of-           finally the application of universal design principles
fice,” and now, in our latest permutation, we go by       to the built environment and in facilitating learning.
the DRC, “Disability Resource Center.” All of
these name changes are inconsequential when                      “It is hard to believe that most of the
                                                           students currently served by the DRC were
               Inside This Issue                             not even born when I was first hired to
Freshman Year Advice: A Student’s Perspective 2
                                                           develop Southern’s new disability services
                                                                   program in August 1980.”
My Journey at Southern Connecticut State      3
University: Reflections from a Southern Grad
                                                          This amalgam of influences created the critical
Learn the Facts: The Truth About Anxiety             4    mass that has earned Southern’s reputation as a
Disorders                                                 leader in the area of disability services in higher
Learning How to Cope: A Student’s Candid                  education.
Look at Anxiety                                                   Recently, I came across my very first an-
Hellos and Goodbyes at the DRC                            nual report from 1981. At that time, 113 students
                                                     6    with documented disabilities had enrolled that aca-
Why Travel?                                          7    demic year. Today, that number is well over 675
                                                          students – a six-fold increase in the number of stu-
Spot Light on dis-ABLED Athletes                     8    dents with disabilities attending Southern. As
                                                          more students with disabilities across the country
Self Determination: The True Key to Success               and at Southern sought and gained admission to
                                                     9    higher education because of civil rights laws such
Reminders and Announcements for the Fall             9
Semester                                                                                   (Continued on page 2)
Page 2

(My Journey at SCSU...continued from page 1)
                                                                       Freshman Year Advice!
as Section 504 of the 1978 Rehabilitation Act and                         My name is Brian Junious, and I’m finishing
the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990, insti-               my freshman year here at Southern. I have been
tutions of higher education had to put in place the               diagnosed with a learning disability since I was in
required changes to ensure equal access. Fortu-                   third grade. In high school, I was exempt from a
nately, Southern embraced this challenge by re-                   language, had special classes for skills and also
sponding not only to the letter of the law, but we                modifications on tests. In my high school career, I
embraced the spirit of these new civil rights laws                was not so focused on academics, but on athletics.
that intended to, as President Bush stated when                   I played football, basketball and ran track from my
signing the ADA, “Let the shameful wall of exclu-                 sophomore year until graduation. While playing
sion finally come tumbling down. “                                sports, schoolwork always came secondary to me
         Over the years, the proportion of students               and sports were my main focus. I got by with C’s
with invisible disabilities such as students with psy-            and was more than happy with that. At my high
chological or emotional disabilities, learning dis-               school, if you were a successful athlete you were
abilities and attention disabilities increased sub-               not only respected by the students, but also by
stantially. Some categories of disabilities that are              the teachers. I did the minimal work I had to in all
commonplace today were not even on our radar                      of my classes and got the grades I needed to pass
in 1980, such as students with autism-spectrum                    the class. I liked to blame sports for my mediocre
disorders. Awareness of invisible disabilities, and               grades, but sports were more of a crutch than a
the myths or stereotypes that often accompany                     reason.
them, requires greater effort to break down atti-
tudinal barriers.                                                     “The advice I give to all incoming
         A second major development on campus                         freshman who have a disability is
was our growing reliance on computer technology
                                                                        that it’s better to accept your
for learning and for all of the major functions of
the university such as registration, e-mail, billing,                    disability and use it to your
etc. Once again, Southern proved to be a leader                       advantage, than to neglect it and
by establishing the Center for Adaptive Technol-
ogy in 1988 for persons with a range of disabili-                         have it bring you down.”
ties. Now students and staff with disabilities have
access to adaptive technology that promotes                               I never told any of my friends or team-
                                                                  mates about my disability because I felt they
greater independence.
                                                                  wouldn’t understand what it meant to be learning
         As Southern increasingly engaged with the                disabled and would take it more as being in
process of ensuring educational equity for stu-                   “special ed” or possibly even intellectually chal-
dents with disabilities, this has led to the greater              lenged. I didn’t realize until I was in college that
inclusion of persons with disabilities who study,                 my learning disability was the real reason for my
work, and visit this campus and to furthering un-                 grades being the way they were. When I was in
derstanding of diversity. The university has ac-                  high school I didn’t take advantage of anything that
tively embraced the sentiment expressed by dis-                   was offered to me to help me compensate for my
ability activist, Dan Wilkins in his quote, “A com-               learning disability. Instead, I was in denial with my-
munity that excludes even one of its members is                   self and said I was fine. Fortunately, I graduated
no community at all.”                                             and went to college, but it wasn’t until then that I
         In 1980, the primary focus of “access” was               began to use my resources.
the removal of architectural and programmatic                              Initially, I didn’t even want to register with
barriers. Soon we discovered that in place of bar-                the Disability Resource Center because I felt that
                                         (Continued on page 8 )
                                                                                                      (Continued on page 6)
       My Journey at Southern Connecticut State University!
        It was four years ago that I began my jour- campus, but I was encouraged to do this by the
ney here at Southern. I had just graduated high        DRC. As my time progressed on the job, I learned
school and was very unsure of myself. I remember skills and developed competencies that built up my
being determined to work to the best of my ability self esteem. I began to feel like a part of the office
and achieve the best grades possible. I was quiet      where I worked and this helped me to not feel as
around people and lacked the confidence to intro- isolated on campus.
duce myself when speaking to others. I have gained              I have participated in many workshops the
more than a quality education from Southern. I         DRC has had in my time at Southern and have
have gained important life skills that will be with    learned and helped others learn essential life skills
me for the rest of my life.                            that are important to success regardless of abilities
        As a freshman, I remember being very quiet or disabilities. I never thought I would have been
and avoiding people unless I had to. I feared others so involved with the DRC, but the terrific people
may view me as being different and thought it          affiliated with the office made the decision an easy
would be best to seclude myself from socializing.      one.
Over time, I became com-                                                                 Above all else, I
fortable with students in my                                                     have learned that I am ca-
classes as well as advocating                                                    pable of doing anything that
for myself in classes. I never                                                   I set my mind to. I have
advocated for myself prior                                                       been determined to do my
to college since my parents                                                      best for most of my life, but
were school personnel and                                                        would have never thought I
always took care of every-                                                       would have made it this far.
thing. One of the most im-                                                       I know I would not have
portant lessons I am taking                                                      made it to where I am
with me as I leave Southern                                                      without the strong social
is the ability to advocate for                                                   support of my parents.
myself.                                                                          They have truly blessed me
                                 Eric Berman at commencement, May 23, 2008.
        I decided to major in                                                    in so many ways and I owe
Psychology, as I thought the subject would match       them so many thanks. As I leave Southern, I will be
my interest and give me an opportunity to choose starting my graduate work at the University of
from several fields in graduate school. Each semes- Connecticut in Hartford studying Social Work.
ter I have learned so much from the great profes- The lessons I have taken from Southern have pre-
sors in the Psychology department. I joined the        pared me well, and I will always look back at all the
Psychology club and attended meetings for most of lessons I learned while attending Southern very
my freshman and sophomore year and had an op- positively.
portunity to travel to Philadelphia with them for an
                                                                                -Eric Berman, SCSU graduate
annual conference in 2007. I also traveled to Or-
lando, Florida on my own for the first time- which
previously I thought would have been impossible. I
was never aware of how accommodating people
are when they see others who may need additional
        One of the things that helped me to open
up more and develop confidence was holding a
campus job. At first I did not want to work on
Page 4

         Learn The Facts: The Truth About Anxiety Disorders.
        During the spring semester, I collabo-      stereotypes about why anxiety disorders ef-
rated with Denise Zack of the Counseling Cen-       fect women more than men. The truth is, the
ter to present a workshop about Anxiety Disor-      higher rate of anxiety in women has nothing
ders in Women to the SCSU community as part         to do with men being “tougher” or “stronger”
of Women’s History Month. Dr. Amenta                or more “stable”. However, some of the rea-
brought her class from WMS 100 to attend. The       sons may be biological in nature. It is a fact
presentation focused on dispelling common mis-      that women have different hormones than
conceptions about anxiety, discussing the preva-    men. New research is indicating that estrogen,
lence of anxiety in women and ways to handle        a steroid produced by ovaries, may interact in
increased stress and anxiety. The presentation      unique ways with serotonin (a neurotransmit-
included a small student panel of SCSU students     ter) and thus may affect feelings of anxiety.
who have struggled with anxiety. Anxiety disor-     More research needs to be done, but this cer-
ders are common and affect both men and             tainly validates that feelings of anxiety are as
women. However, several anxiety disorders af-       real as any other medical diagnosis and not
fect women at a higher rate. For the general        simply a state of mind.
population, there is a twenty five percent chance          Other reasons for higher rates of PTSD
of developing an anxiety disorder in one’s life-    and other disorders may be related to the fact
time. While this number may seem alarmingly         that women are more likely to be the victims
high, the good news is that most anxiety disor-     of both sexual and physical abuse. Women and
ders are fully treatable with either therapy,       men may also be raised with different expecta-
medication or a combination of both. Below are      tions and it is often more culturally appropri-
quick facts about anxiety disorders and their       ate in America for women to express feelings
prevalence from the National Institute of Mental    and emotions openly while it may be discour-
Health.                                             aged in men.
    • 6.6% of women will develop Generalized               If you are struggling with feelings of anxi-
       Anxiety Disorder vs. 3.6% of men             ety, it is important to seek a proper diagnosis
    • 10-14% of women will develop Post Trau-       from a qualified professional. If you have mild
       matic Stress Disorder (PTSD) vs. 5-6%        feelings of anxiety or stress, you may find re-
                                                    lief by a few simple changes you can make in
                                                    your life. Consider finding balance in your daily
    • Women are twice as likely as men to de-       schedule. Are you allowing for enough down-
       velop a panic disorder                       time in which you do activities that are relax-
    • 6.8 % of adults have social phobia (equally   ing and renewing for you? Learn effective time
                                                    management skills, which will help you avoid
       common in men and women)
                                                    situations that create stress, such as over-
    • Pregnancy can effect the impact of an         booking yourself. Learn relaxation techniques,
       anxiety disorder                             such as meditation, deep breathing, progres-
            – 25% of women with Obsessive           sive muscle relaxation, yoga, and mindfulness
              Compulsive Disorder will see an       training. Consider going to counseling sessions
              increase in symptoms during           with a therapist to help you manage your
              pregnancy                             stress and anxiety. Remember, SCSU offers
                                                    short-term counseling free of charge to ma-
            – 20% of women have an anxiety          triculated students. If your anxiety disorder is
                or mood disorder during preg-       to the point where you feel it is disabling,
         There are many misconceptions and                                          (Continued on page 6)
Learning How to Cope: A Student’s Candid Look at Anxiety.
        My name is Jennifer Katz and I have just        way I feel like I’m not being pressured and I have
finished my freshman year at SCSU and I suffer          no one looking at me because I’m the last person
with very bad anxiety. My anxiety first began af-       to take the test. The DRC has been very helpful
ter a car accident that I was involved in when I        to help me relax and not feel anxious about my
was ten years old. That day changed my life for-        tests.
ever. Each day I now suffer with at least one or                 The one thing that scares me with my
more panic attacks. I have received help to be          anxiety disorder is that I’m afraid that if I start
able to control them, but I still have some major       having a panic attack that people will think I’m
attacks on occasion and they are scary big or           weird. Most people don’t even know I have
small.                                                  anxiety because I have been taught how to con-
        My anxiety can get in the way of my             trol it so well. The only people who really do
learning sometimes. I get very anxious when it          know are my family, my boyfriend, and my close
                                                        friends, who have experienced panic attacks with
                                                        me. You might think it’s embarrassing, but it’s
   “The best advice I can give people who suffer with   who you are, and there are people to help and
   an anxiety disorder is you’re not the only one, and  get you through it. It’s actually even more com-
   even though it’s very scary you have to just say to
                                                        forting to know that someone is there with you
                                                        during one because it almost makes you feel bet-
    yourself that you will be okay, because you will.”.
                                                        ter hearing “are you okay”?
                                                                 When I start to feel anxious the first cou-
comes to tests, sitting in the front row of the         ple of signs are: my heart starts to race, I start
classroom, participating, and presentations.            feeling claustrophobic, sick to my stomach, and I
Sometimes panic attacks can come about for no feel like I’m having a heat flash and my face gets
reason. Most of these are very common in peo- red like I’m embarrassed. When I start to feel
ple with anxiety. I have overcome my presenta- them come on, I immediately start to talk to my-
tion anxiety, but I still get very anxious just be-     self and tell myself that I’m going to be okay and
fore I have one. The only way to overcome it is try to get my mind off of it and imagine some-
if you just keep doing them. I have a huge fear         thing I enjoy doing. Sometimes that works, and
about the front row of the classroom; I feel eve- sometimes it can be really bad and it can get to
ryone is watching me. That is the worst feeling         the point when I start screaming and feel like I
you can ever feel with anxiety. I can’t focus on        can’t breathe and have to breathe into a bag. I
what’s going on in class if I am focusing and pan- only have these kinds of attacks maybe 4 times a
icking about everyone watching me. I like to sit        year. It’s very scary though, but they don’t last
in the back by the door incase I have an attack so long, and I do come out of them. The worst fear
that I can get up and leave so nobody will notice. while I am having an attack is I feel like I am going
         Participation and tests are another com- to die. Each time I get one I have told myself that
mon anxiety. I hate to participate, especially          I can control this by myself, and it’s not going to
when the teacher calls on me when I don’t ex-           control me and take over because I won’t let it.
pect it . I get so embarrassed because I have no                 The best advice I can give people who
idea how to answer the question he’s asked be- suffer with an anxiety disorder is you’re not the
cause I don’t have time to process an answer. I         only one, and even though it’s very scary you
start to panic when teachers do this because I          have to just say to yourself that you will be okay
feel like I’m being humiliated in front of my class- because you will. You have to take control of
mates for not knowing the answer. Lastly, I get         yourself so that you can fight the anxiety.
anxious when taking tests and as a result, I take
                                                                              - Jennifer Katz, SCSU Student
my tests in the DRC with extended time. That
Page 6

(Continued from page 2)                                (Continued from page 4)

it didn’t do anything for me in high school, and I       make an appointment with the Disability Resource
didn’t want any of my new friends to think I was         Center to see if you qualify for services. All ser-
different then they were. Yet my parents pushed          vices are confidential. Lastly, remember that anxi-
me into it and said if it doesn’t work out I can         ety disorders are common, yet many people with
simply just drop it at the end of the semester with      anxiety disorders are afraid to share their feelings
no questions asked. This turned out to be a solid        with others for fear of judgment. Let’s all help the
decision by my parents. I scheduled weekly ap-           SCSU community be one of acceptance and under-
pointments in the DRC and followed through               standing!
with the meetings. At each weekly meeting, I
would simply tell what I was doing in my classes                                    - Kelly O’Brien Mann
and what problems I was having. My advisor
would help me by giving me different resources or
strategies I could use to help with a problem I was
having. Through the DRC, I learned about the            For additional information and re-
CAT lab (Center for Adaptive Technology) where
I learned about one of my most helpful tools,
                                                        sources about anxiety disorders,
Kurzwiel 3000. This is a program that scans books       check out the following websites:
and reads them back to you while you’re follow-
                                                        National Institute of Mental Health:
ing along on the screen. Since my disability im-
pacts my reading, this truly did help. This was          http://www.nimh.nih.gov/
shown by my grades for the first semester. I went       National Alliance on Mental Illness:
from being a C average student in high school to
getting a 3.2 GPA, Dean’s list recognition, and         http://www.nami.org/
even a $5000 scholarship grant from the school.         Anxiety Disorders Association of America:
         This spring semester, I decided to take        http://www.adaa.org/
CSP 100, a class to help me further develop my
study skills. There I was able to learn about the       SCSU Counseling Center:
type of learner I am and develop effective strate-       http://www.southernct.edu/counseling
gies and skills to help me learn more effectively
                                                        SCSU Disability Resource Center:
with the style that I have. This spring semester my
grades are looking even better than those from          http://www.southernct.edu/drc
the fall because I am using the different resources
and strategies that I have learned through the          Interested in Mental Health Topics?
DRC. The advice I give to all incoming freshman         Join Active Minds, a new student organization to
who have a disability is that it’s better to accept     promote awareness of mental health topics in
your disability and use it to your advantage, than      order to break down the stigma associated with
to neglect it and have it bring you down. I regret      mental illness. Meetings will resume in the fall
in high school neglecting it after seeing what I was    2008 semester. If you’d like more information,
capable of doing with it. The positive aspect is        please contact either faculty advisor and/or
that I realized it and now have my college career       check out information on the SCSU Active
to make it up.                                          Minds Facebook page!
                                                        Faculty Advisor: Kelly Mann, Disability Resource
                                                        Center 203-392-6828, Mannk1@southernct.edu
                                                        Faculty Advisor: Kate Walsh, Counseling Cen-
                                     - Brian Junious    ter, 203-392-5474, Walshk11@southernct.edu
                                             Why Travel?
        On April 4 , in conjunction with the Bu-         ning does as a way to prepare for the trip, but also
reau of Rehabilitation Services, Board of Education      to help insure preparation for the unexpected, for
and Services for the Blind, the City of New Haven        example, having a list of your doctors’ contact in-
Disability Services, Enterprise Car Rental, SCSU         formation, medical conditions, and medication you
Career Center, and the SCSU Center for Adaptive          currently take, in the event you should become
Technology, the Disability Resource Center spon-         sick while traveling. There were resources that
sored a workshop for students with disabilities and      were handed out to students including a take-
their parents on the reasons to travel. The work-        home packet they could use when planning a trip.
shop demonstrated the importance of learning to                  Parents had the opportunity to address
travel independently, as being willing to travel in-     their concerns and listen to a panel of profession-
creases students’ career opportunities. Travel for       als who had learned to travel with disabilities, as
work related activities, as well as for social activi-   well as hear other parent’s experiences. Parents
ties enhances one’s experiences, increases inde-         were given resources and also learned about cam-
pendence and enhances self esteem. The work-             pus opportunities for travel such as social events,
shop consisted of a welcome, an overview, and            leadership conferences, study abroad opportunities
two break-out sessions; one for parents and one
                                                         and club activities.
for students. It concluded with students reporting
back to parents what they learned from their                     The end result of the workshop was posi-
                                                         tive. Students felt more prepared and willing to
workshop experience.
                                                         travel and parents agreed it was important to sup-
        As part of the overview, several upper-          port independent travel for their children. Since
classmen shared their own experiences with               the workshop, several students have begun to
travel. This was a powerful and motivating part of       travel on their own and others have set travel re-
the workshop. Students shared their fears about
                                                         lated goals.
travel, what steps they have taken to overcome
their fears, and pertinent travel experiences. One                                       - Deborah Fairchild
upper classman shared that not traveling impacted
her socially and now is limiting her ability to
choose an internship because she is afraid to take
the bus on her own. She shared that she recog-
nizes this is a problem and realizes she wants more
choices and independence in her life.
        During the student portion of the work-
shop, students were broken into groups and given
a scenario of where they needed to travel and the
purpose of the trip. For example, one group went
to Boston to a Career Fair. Students first brain-
stormed concerns and issues they had in regards
to travel. As a group they needed to find solutions
to these concerns, and then were required to
book a hotel, transportation, meals and entertain-
ment. Students used the internet, telephone, re-
source books, each other and staff as resources to
help them negotiate the activity. For many this
was the first time they actually called a hotel, air-
line, or train to ask about availability, as well as
accessibility. Students experienced what preplan-
Page 8

 Spotlight on dis-ABLED athletes                        (Continued from page 2)

                                                        rier removal, application of the principles of uni-
          The May 17 issue of the New York Times        versal design of the built or designed environ-
 featured a detailed article on Oscar Pistorius, an     ment, held benefits for everyone and not just
 athlete who was born without the fibula in his         individuals with physical disabilities or sensory
 lower legs and defects in both his feet. His legs      impairments. Who among us has not taken ad-
 were amputated below the knee when he was 11           vantage of universal design features such as ele-
 months old. Since then, this talented young ath-       vators, ramps, enlarged bathrooms, automatic
 lete has gone on to set Paralympic world records       doors, closed-captioning class notes posted on a
 in the 100, 200 and 400 meters. However, it was        website and other design features once viewed
 not until he began competing and winning against       as for persons with disabilities?
 able-bodied athletes in South Africa that Pistorius
                                                                As my retirement from Southern ap-
 began to gain world recognition in 2004. Based on
                                                        proaches, I feel a sense of wonder and pride in
 his successes in the track arena, Pistorius had set
                                                        having worked with so many others, both stu-
 his sites on competing in this year’s 2008 Beijing
                                                        dents and staff, who played a pivotal part in
 Summer Olympics                                        shaping Southern’s exemplary efforts to ensure
          Due to concerns that Oscar’s prosthetics      access. I leave knowing that there are still chal-
 might give him an unfair advantage, he was origi-      lenges ahead and know the university in general,
 nally told he would not be allowed to compete in       and my DRC colleagues in particular, will con-
 the 2008 Olympics. Oscar has refused to give into      tinue to ensure access and success for persons
 this decision and give up his dream of competing in    with disabilities who study, work, or visit our
 the Olympics, and thus felt he had no other re-        campus.
 course than to appeal this decision to the Court of
 Arbitration for Sport (CAS). Lawyers for Pistorius                                     - Suzanne Tucker
 set out to prove that the testing results used to
 make the decision were subjective and fell short of     Hellos and Goodbyes at
 the high standards the international sporting com-
 munity is entitled to expect. After a 5 month legal
                                                         the DRC!
 battle, the CAS ruled that Pistorius would be           Although Suzanne Tucker, longtime Coordina-
 granted the chance to compete. While his training       tor of the DRC, has retired, rest assured that
 has suffered due to the time spent in the court-        the mission of the DRC will carry on through
 room instead of on the track, Pistorius stated in an    the dedicated staff that continue in the office.
 interview, “It’s not just about me, it’s about the      Deborah Fairchild, an Assistant Coordinator
                                                         at the DRC and professional in the field of
 extra opportunity for amputee athletes”
                                                         Disability Services for three decades will as-
          Unfortunately, Pistorius did not qualify to    sume the role of Interim Coordinator. We
 compete in the Beijing Olympics, but his triumph is     are lucky to have her leadership during this
 a landmark decision that gives inspiration to dis-      time of transition. The DRC would like to
 abled athletes everywhere. To read the full article     welcome Bridget Stepeck-Holt as our newest
 that appeared in the May 17th edition of the New        staff member. We all look forward to working
 York Times, please visit the following link:            with her as part of the DRC team. The DRC
 http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/17/sports/               also welcomes Steve Kinane from Central
 olympics/                                               Connecticut State University and Christie
                                                         Roche from Southern as our graduate interns.

                                    - Eileen Hawkins
                                                                                   - Kelly O’Brien Mann
                  Self Determination: The True Key to Success
          People measure success in many different      not really what they want. People are motivated
ways. Self-determination is a critical component to     towards success when they are working on achiev-
achieving success. “Self-determination is the ability   ing something that is important and meaningful to
of individuals to make choices that allow them to       them.
exercise control over their lives, to achieve the               Self-determination is the true key to suc-
goals to which they aspire and to acquire the skills    cess. As a student, you should be in college be-
and resources necessary to participate fully and        cause it is where you want to be. You need to re-
meaningfully in society” (Adopted from National         search a major and determine what you need to
Center on Self-Determination).                          do to be successful in that major/field. You need
          From kindergarten through twelfth grade,      to determine what supports you need to seek out
many students with disabilities do not feel in con-     and you need to determine what you are willing to
trol of their education. There are PPTs and IEPs        give up to achieve your goals. Once you recognize
where a team of professionals say what the stu-         that you have control over your decisions and
dent needs and what educational goals are appro-        your life you become powerful. This power and
priate. It is the team that notifies the student’s      sense of control coupled with organization and
teachers about what modifications, accommoda-           effective study strategies is what will help you to
tions and goals the student has. Very rarely do stu-    become successful.
dents have input into this process. When a student
                                                                                        - Deborah Fairchild
gets to college, there is no more special education
and no team telling the student and professors
what they need to do. Now it is up to the student        Reminders and Announcements
to determine what he/she wants out of life. Stu-             Fall is both an exciting and busy time of year
dents need to figure out how to use this new free-       as new students enter college for the first time
dom to take control of their lives. While a student      and returning students settle into their new rou-
is figuring out what is right for them and making a      tines and courses. The following are helpful re-
plan for how to reach the goals that they are set-       minders to ensure a smooth transition into or
ting, it is appropriate to seek support.                 back to school!
          At Southern, there are many places stu-                 The DRC is open 8:30-4:30 Monday
dents can go to seek support to achieve their                     through Friday.
goals. The Disability Resource Center is a great                  The DRC encourages all students who
support and also a place to get referrals to other                feel they may benefit to schedule weekly
supports on campus such as Counseling, Career                     half-hour appointments with a DRC Spe-
Services, the Office of Study Skills and Enrichment,              cialist to develop compensatory strate-
Tutoring and the Writing Center. These supports                   gies, explore strengths and weaknesses,
are useful should a student recognize a need for                  understand your disability and discuss
support and sees the support as a valuable tool in
                                                                  other disability related needs.
reaching a personal goal.
                                                                  For students who will be taking exams in
          When setting personal goals students need               the DRC, please be mindful that space
to be clear on what they want. Students need to                   fills up quickly. As a result, we ask
take responsibility for their actions. Goals need to              students to sign up one week in advance
be realistic, concrete and measurable. Students                   of their scheduled exam to reserve space
also need to constantly assess if they are moving in
                                                                  in the DRC testing room.
the direction of achieving the goal. If they are not,
students should analyze if they need to change               For questions, please stop by the front desk
what they are doing or if the goal they have set is          or call 203-392-6828.
Page 10                                                     SCSU/DRC Update -- Summer/Fall 2008

Welcome Incoming                       To Contact the DRC
Students and Welcome                      Engleman Hall C105
Back Returning                           Phone: 203-392-6828
Students!                                 TTY: 203-392-6131             Editor and Layout
Please remember to contact the        E-mail: DRC@southernct.edu        Kelly O’Brien Mann
DRC early on to schedule both           www.southernct.edu/drc          Assistant Editors
your weekly appointment time
and an accommodation appoint-                                           Eileen Hawkins
ment if you’ll be using either of       The DRC Update is               Steve LaBranche
these services. Also, for students    available in alternate            Steve Kinane
using adaptive technology and
scanned text, be sure to deliver     formats upon request,              Odessa Morton
                                                                        Linda Sivey-McDonald
your text books to the Center          including Braille, e-
for Adaptive Technology before                                          Bridget Stepeck-Holt
the start of the semester so that
                                     text, large print or au-           Contributors
your material will be in an acces-    dio-tape. Contact the             Deborah Fairchild
sible format before classes begin.                                      Eileen Hawkins
We look forward to another
                                         DRC for details.
                                                                        Brian Junios
great semester of working with                                          Jennifer Katz
you!                                                                    Kelly O’Brien Mann
           - The staff of the DRC                                       Suzanne Tucker

501 Crescent Street
New Haven, CT 06515

            “Promoting educational equity for students with disabilities.”

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