Physical impairments refer to physiological disorders or conditions affecting one or more of the following body systems: neurological, immunological, musculoskeletal, special sense organs, respiratory (including speech organs), cardiovascular, reproductive, digestive, genitor-urinary, hemic and lymphatic, skin, and endocrine. Chronic illnesses include, but are not limited to, cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes, epilepsy, human immunodeficiency virus, multiple sclerosis, arthritis, allergies, and other diseases. In order to be considered a disability, the disorder(s), conditions, or chronic illness must meet the definitions provided by ADA law.
The professional (e.g., physician, nurse practitioner, physician's assistant) who provides the assessment must be qualified to do so. Students must provide a current professional evaluation which identifies the disability, describes the limitations caused by this condition, and, if possible, recommends accommodations that should be provided. The documentation should include information about the onset, longevity, and severity of the symptoms, in addition to how it has created challenges for educational achievement. This information is confidential and will not be released to others without the student's permission.
Student Health Services may be able to provide appropriate documentation for you. In addition, they may be able to refer you to off campus clinicians who are qualified to conduct appropriate assessments.
In some cases, special dietary arrangements can be made with dining services, and students can work with the dean's office to create appropriate course scheduling options or housing options in light of the student's needs.