University of Maryland 
Office of Disability Services

The University of Maryland is committed to providing equal access and opportunities for qualified students with disabilities who seek to enroll in, attend, and graduate from the University.  The Office of Disability Services helps students with disabilities obtain equal access at the University of Maryland.

Any questions regarding the accommodations process may be directed to:
Deborah Levi, Academic and Student Affairs 
Southern Management Corporation Campus Center
621 W. Lombard Street, Room 343
Baltimore, MD 21201
ph:  410-706-5889
fax: 410-706-0265

Hearing impaired - Maryland Relay Service 711 in Maryland or 800-735-2258 elsewhere.
dlevi@umaryland.edu



Reasonable Accommodation

The Office of Disability Services assists students with qualifying disabilities to obtain all types of reasonable accommodations.  Reasonable accommodations are modifications or alterations intended to provide equal access or improve accessibility to physical, programmatic, and academic areas of the University.  

How to Request Reasonable Accommodation

A. Self-Identification

The first step in requesting accommodation for a disability is for a student to self-identify as a student with a disability.  Students should review, complete, and submit the Disclosure and Request for Accommodations Form.  Students are encouraged to call or visit OSS for guidance and assistance with the process. 

Once a student has completed the Disclosure and Request Accommodations Form:

  1. The student obtains and submits documentation of the disability to the Office of Disability Services.
  2. The Office of Disability Services reviews the information in the Disclosure and Request for Accommodations form as well as the medical/psychological documentation of the disability. The Office of Disability Services may contact the student for more information or clarification, if needed.
  3. The Office of Disability Services works directly with the student's school/program to seek approval for appropriate and reasonable accommodations.
  4. Once reasonable accommodations have been agreed upon by all parties, the student will receive a letter from the Office of Disability Services documenting the reasonable accommodation plan.

Students are strongly encouraged to submit accommodation requests before the semester begins. While there is no specific deadline, the interactive process often involves communication between the student, OSS and the student’s school.  It may take time to finalize the accommodation and implement arrangements. 

Accommodations are not provided retroactively.

School Contacts
Each school has a contact to help students with disabilities obtain equal access:

SchoolPoint of ContactPhone Number
School of MedicineSandy Dolan, MA, PhD(410) 706-7669
Dental SchoolDebra Suls(410) 706-7461
School of NursingAnn Mech, RN, JD
Susan Wozenski, JD, MPH
(410) 706-7646
(410) 706-0447
School of LawDawna Cobb, JD(410) 706-8385
School of PharmacyMargaret Hayes, MS(410) 706-6586
School of Social WorkDeborah Rejent, DSW(410) 706-7707
GPILSRachael Holmes(410) 706-6042
DMRTDeirdre Parsons, MS, MT(410) 706-7664
Public HealthPam DeMartino(410) 706-3338
Physical TherapyAngel Jackson(410) 706-7721
















B. Documentation Guidelines

Students requesting accommodations should provide appropriate medical documentation. The documentation should state the specific disability and recommended accommodations with a rationale. The documentation should be typed and from a licensed healthcare professional qualified to diagnose the disability.

UMB may request supplemental documentation if it is determined that the information in the initial documentation is incomplete or inadequate, or that the qualifications of the healthcare provider are in question.   Documentation will be kept confidential and be released only to those with a need to know the information.

C. Developing the Accommodation Plan

While a student’s proposal for accommodation is always considered, the University of Maryland engages in an interactive process to devise a plan that is acceptable to the University, the student’s school and the student.  Consequently, the reasonable accommodation offered by the University of Maryland may be different from what the student requests. Accommodations depend on many factors including the disability, the activity for which accommodation is required (e.g., didactic classroom experiences and/or clinical training), and the essential technical standards of the program.

The University of Maryland will not approve an accommodation that (1) is incompatible with technical standards for admission or progression, (2) alters the fundamental nature of the academic program, (3) would result in an unreasonable risk to health or safety, or (4) would result in undue hardship to the University of Maryland.

University Designee to Coordinate UMB Compliance:
 
Dr. Roger J. Ward
Associate Vice President of Academic and Student Affairs
Office of Academic Affairs
University of Maryland, Baltimore
621 W. Lombard Street, Room 305
Baltimore, MD  21201
410-706-2477
rward005@umaryland.edu

Student Grievance Procedures Regarding Accommodation Decisions

A. Procedure

1. A student with questions or a grievance about a reasonable accommodation decision of the University or a school should first communicate with the School Contact or the Director of OSS.  If the matter is not satisfactorily resolved, it should be reported to the Associate Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs (“Associate Vice President”).

2. Unless the student objects, the University may attempt to resolve a grievance informally.  For formal or informal grievances, the student should explain the incident underlying the grievance, the perceived problem and offer a proposed solution.  The University reserves the right to proceed immediately to a formal review of the student’s complaint.  At any time, a student may request an informal process proceed to a formal grievance.

3. A formal grievance of a reasonable accommodation decision should be in writing with pertinent records and documentation. 

4. The Associate Vice President (or alternate impartial designee of the Vice President for Academic Affairs) will work with the dean of the student’s school, or the dean’s designee, to develop an appropriate investigational process depending on the circumstances surrounding the reasonable accommodations grievance (e.g., didactic classroom experiences or clinical training).  If a grievance involves persons from more than one school, the Associate Vice President will work with the deans of the schools involved to develop an appropriate investigational process.

5. The student, the dean or dean’s designee, and persons whose decisions or actions are the subject of the grievance will be given an opportunity to meet with the Associate Vice President to discuss the grievance and the investigative process and to submit written statements, names of witnesses and other evidence. 

6. The Associate Vice President will investigate the reasonable accommodation grievance, look at the record as a whole and at the totality of the circumstances.  The Associate Vice President will make a decision and write a report summarizing the investigation and evidence and provide findings based on all the facts, on a case by case basis.  The decision of the Associate Vice President is final unless modified due to an appeal for reconsideration. 

7. The student, the dean of the student’s school, and persons whose decisions or actions are the subject of the grievance will be given the findings and decision of the Associate Vice President in writing.  

8. The student may appeal for reconsideration by the Associate Vice President on the basis of:  1) failure of due process, or 2) availability of new evidence which could not reasonably have been presented during the original investigation.  The appeal for reconsideration must be submitted in writing within 7 calendar days following the date of the Associate Vice President’s decision. 

9. The Associate Vice President will maintain records regarding reasonable accommodation grievances.

10. To ensure appropriate due process and prompt, equitable resolution of complaints pertaining to reasonable accommodation decisions, formal rules of evidence will not apply and the Associate Vice President may limit repetitive and irrelevant evidence.  The University will attempt to resolve the grievance within 45 calendar days.  Attorneys will not participate in meetings with the Associate Vice President, but the schedule for the investigation will allow time for the student and other participants to consult with and obtain input from legal counsel and other advisors. 

B. Time Limits

A grievance filed within 10 calendar days of the aggrieved reasonable accommodation decision will be considered timely.  Nevertheless, the University will investigate any grievance filed within a reasonable time.

C. Confidentiality

The University will take reasonable steps to protect the confidentiality of the parties involved in a grievance.  Persons involved will be advised of the necessity of keeping information related to a grievance confidential.  However, persons should be aware that the University may need to disclose information in order to conduct an investigation, resolve a grievance and comply with applicable law.

D. No Retaliation

The University does not tolerate or condone any form of retaliation against a grievant whose reasonable accommodation complaint is made in good faith.

E. Exceptions

This procedure does not supersede policies and procedures addressing issues specifically governed by other University policies, such as: school grade appeals and school dismissal appeals, sex-based discrimination of students (see UMB VI-1.20(B)) and student sexual orientation non-discrimination policy and procedures (see UMB VI - 1.05(B)).
Students are expected to present such grievances in accordance with the applicable school and University policy and procedure.  

F. Grievances Involving Affiliates' Employees

Many University students will be supervised by employees of the University's affiliates and teaching sites during their educational experiences. If a student is aggrieved by a reasonable accommodation decision in such a setting, the University will attempt to resolve the issue, and will attempt to reassign the student if a resolution is not feasible.

G. Filing Grievances with Outside Agencies:

For further information on non-discrimination, reasonable accommodation, or to file an equal opportunity complaint directly with the U.S. Department of Education, contact:  

Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
The Wanamaker Building, Suite 515
100 Penn Square East
Philadelphia, PA 19107
Phone: 1-800-421-3481
Email:
OCR.Philadelphia@ed.gov

Counseling

The University Student Counseling Center offers assistance in coping with the stress resulting from discrimination or participation in campus proceedings to investigate discrimination.

UMB Student Counseling Center
HS/HSL Library
601 W. Lombard St., Suite 440
Baltimore, MD 21201
Phone: 410 328 8404; Fax 410 328 5291

Educational Programs

Programs for students about reasonable accommodation for students can be arranged through the Associate Vice President, the OSS Director, or the University Director of Employee Relations and Diversity Initiatives. 
 

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