International Students and Disabilities

The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) states that no qualified individual with a disability may be denied access to or participation in services, programs and activities.  At Mount Holyoke College this applies to all students, both international and domestic, and covers all areas of campus life including academics, student employment, student programming and other services.

The McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives works closely with AccessAbility Services to ensure that international students who have a documented disability receive the accommodations they need so that they can learn to their highest potential and achieve their long-term goals.

What is a disability?

A disability is a condition such as blindness or visual impairment, deafness or hearing difficulties, ADD/ADHD, learning disabilities, medical, mobility, physical, psychological, or another chronic condition as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (see above).

What is a documented disability?

Mount Holyoke students who request accommodations due to a disability must provide written, diagnostic evidence of the disability from a professional who is qualified by education and training to make such an evaluation.  If you think you have a disability, but don't have any documentation, please speak to someone in AccessAbility Services (B4 Wilder Hall) for assistance.

Why international students with disabilities should request accommodations

Most international students will go through periods of adjustment as they transition from life in their home country to life in the U.S.  Due to cultural differences it is sometimes the case that international students find it uncomfortable to seek help from "strangers."  They may also feel embarrassed or ashamed if they need to ask for help of any kind.

The following video, along with providing more information about international students and disabilities, will also help students with disabilities and their families understand that asking for an accommodation is a positive step towards ensuring their success at Mount Holyoke and beyond.  We encourage students and their families to watch this video.

How should international students request accommodations?

International students who think they may qualify for an accommodation due to a documented disability should register with AccessAbility Services.