Saginaw Valley State University takes great pride in the academic and personal achievements of its many students with disabilities. SVSU is committed to providing equal and integrated access for individuals with disabilities to all the academic, social, cultural, and recreational programs it offers. This commitment is consistent with legal requirements, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act as Amended (ADAAA) of 2008, and embodies the University’s historic determination to ensure the inclusion of all members of its communities.
Our goal, at Disability Services, is to provide services and support to ensure that students are able to access and participate in the opportunities available at Saginaw Valley State University. In keeping with this objective, students are expected and encouraged to utilize the resources of Disability Services to the degree they determine necessary. Although a significant degree of independence is expected of students, Disability Services is available to assist, should the need arise.
The Office of Disability Services (DS) serves as a central point of information and leadership to ensure equal access and full participation for students with disabilities in all programs and activities at Saginaw Valley State University. Principles of Universal Design guide us in our work as we strive to proactively identify and remove barriers to participation wherever possible. We also strive to promote a disability positive and inclusive climate at SVSU that recognizes student's multiple identities and values the diverse perspectives that contribute to a multicultural learning and living environment.
Approximately 400 undergraduate and graduate students with disabilities at SVSU receive services or support through the Office of Disability Services. These student scholars are represented in all academic fields, many study abroad, work in jobs on and off campus, and serve as campus leaders.
Disability Services seeks to support students in developing academic and life skills, learning about campus and community resources, and gaining the confidence, resilience, and empowerment needed to meet their individual, career, and life objectives. SVSU's commitment to providing support and services is balanced with a humanistic and developmental approach that requires student engagement and responsibility in the accommodation process.
Disability Services promotes access to the curriculum, campus facilities, programs, and technology by:
1. Identifying and addressing physical, communication, and information barriers.
2. Providing individualized accommodations and services.
3. Collaborating and consulting with other departments on campus.
4. Conducting educational programming designed to build an accessible and inclusive campus community.
Disability Services is also deeply committed to fostering community and connection among students with disabilities where self-knowledge, understanding and peer support, mentoring, empowerment, and engagement around common challenges and solutions can flourish. We help students connect with our Mentors program and with the Ability First, a student org that includes students without and with all types of disabilities working to create community, promote visibility, and address ableism, particularly at its intersections with other social justice issues.
Disabled students come to Saginaw Valley State University from neighboring towns, across the nation, and around the globe and bring unique strengths, talents, creativity, and experiences that strengthen and enrich the diversity of the SVSU academic and residential community.
SVSU offers auxiliary aids and services to students who qualify. Once a student is accepted to SVSU, contact should be made with the Office of Disability Services. The links on the top left of this page provide access to more information.
SVSU is proud to be one of the few universities in Michigan that offer one-on-one training and assessments on assistive technology. Using the “right” software or special computer can be the catalyst to help students study more effective and efficiently and ultimately aid with independent learning. Scott MacLeod is available to meet with any student at SVSU and ascertain types of programs that can help, and provide training to best utilize these programs. Call (989) 964-7000 to set up an appointment.