Students with disabilities are not alone – Dr Vos

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March 4, 2016 by Student 24/7 Blog

Attending a university, albeit fun, is challenging. Students manage plenty: deadlines, exams, finances, extracurricular activities and even their free time. Consider for a moment another layer of challenges for students with disabilities – academic access. For this reason, the Office for Students with Special Needs at the Vaal Triangle Campus of the North-West University (NWU Vaal), was established in 2012.

Office for Students with Special Needs

For this reason, the Office for Students with Special Needs at the Vaal Triangle Campus of the North-West University (NWU Vaal), was established in 2012. This office serves as a critical resource; supporting the academic experience and working to ensure equal access to the academic environment for students with disabilities. The office complies with the University’s policy on students with special needs, and functions as a division of the Directorate Student Counselling and Development (SCD).

Core to its mandate, the office endeavours to make the learning environment a rich and rewarding one, and continually strives to improve all aspects of accessibility – physically, technologically and socially for students with disabilities. The office also facilitates access, discourse, and involvement through innovative services and programs.

According to Dr. Syndey Vos, coordinator of the division, the office has been mandated to promote academic success, self-advocacy, and equal opportunity through education, awareness, and understanding that disability forms part and parcel of the Campus’s rich diversity.

“We are committed to working towards the goal of creating an equal, accessible and welcoming environment for students with disabilities. We are the starting point for coordinated support to all students with ay special kind of need”, elaborates Dr. Vos.

He further says that the University has an obligation to create a more accessible and diverse space to accommodate students with special needs and as such also has access to the quality education offered by the institution.

Additional duties of the office include:

  • Recommend and coordinate reasonable interventions (for example: additional exam time, housing and transportation),
  • Encourage student development through self-advocacy and personal decision making,
  • Support each students’ commitment to academic success,
  • Provide information to faculty and administrators regarding disability awareness and inclusion.

The office has full time professional staff committed to equal opportunity for all students.

To get in touch with the office, visit: Building 13, Split Level 3, SL 331 or contact 016 910 3195

Written by: Dumile Mlambo (Marketing and Communication)
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