Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Policy
Herzing University complies with applicable provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, other federal mandates, and state and local laws regarding individuals with disabilities. These laws protect students with disabilities, and students may request reasonable accommodations for their disabilities from the University. Reasonable accommodations are determined on an individual basis and made available to the extent that they meet the student’s needs and do not compromise the academic integrity of the University’s educational programs.
Questions related to the University’s policies and procedures related to disability services should be directed to the central ADA Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students with disabilities who wish to request accommodation under the ADA must:
- Submit a request for accommodation with appropriate documentation to their student services specialist.
- Meet with the Campus ADA Coordinator to discuss the request.
- Alert the Campus ADA Coordinator if accommodations provided are not working or do not meet their needs.
Students with disabilities are responsible for providing documentation of their disability to their Student Services Specialist. Documentation provided must both establish that the student has a disability and provide enough detail regarding the functional limitations caused by the disability so that appropriate accommodations can be identified and provided. Documentation will be kept confidential and maintained securely on the University intranet.
All documentation must:
- Come from an appropriately licensed clinical professional familiar with the history and functional impact of the student’s disability.
- Verify the nature and extent of the student’s disability aligned to current professional standards and techniques, and include a description of applicable diagnostic criteria, evaluation methods, procedures, tests and dates of administration, as well as a clinical narrative, observation and specific results.
- Be dated, signed, and submitted on official letterhead including the name, title and professional credentials of the evaluator.
- Describe how the disability affects the student’s ability to participate in University activities and programs.
- Reflect the student’s current level of functioning and demonstrate whether and how a major life activity is substantially limited by providing a clear sense of the severity, frequency and pervasiveness, and progression or prognosis of the condition(s).
- Include a description of any current and past medications, auxiliary aids, assistive devices, support services, and accommodations, including their known effectiveness in alleviating functional limitations of the disability.
- Include recommendations for accommodations, adaptive devices, assistive services, compensatory strategies, and/or collateral support services.
- If the original documentation is incomplete or inadequate to determine the extent of the disability or reasonable accommodation, the university has the discretion to require additional documentation. Any cost incurred in obtaining additional documentation when the original records are inadequate is the responsibility of the student.
- Documentation that includes a diagnosis or testing battery performed by a member of the student’s family will not be accepted.
- Students requesting accommodations for functional limitations due to multiple disabilities must provide evidence of all such conditions.
- Documentation forms and guidelines for documentation of specific disabilities, such as learning disabilities, psychiatric disabilities, or others as identified are available through the Student Services Department; please contact your Student Services Specialist for more information.
Herzing University is committed to ensuring that all information and communication pertaining to a student’s disability is maintained as confidential as required or permitted by law.
The following guidelines apply to the treatment of such information:
- No one will have immediate access to student files except appropriate staff of Herzing University. Any information regarding a student’s disability is protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and will only be disclosed as permitted or required by FERPA.
- Sensitive information in student files will not be released except in accordance with federal and state laws.
- A student’s file may be released pursuant to a court order or subpoena.
- If a student wishes to have information about their disability shared with others, the student must provide written authorization to release the information. Before giving such authorization, the student should understand the purpose of the release and to whom the information is being released.
- A student has the right to review their own file with reasonable notification.
Disability: A physical or mental impairment that limits one or more of an individual’s major life activities.
Major Life Activities: Basic functions such as caring for one’s self, performing manual tasks, walking, seeing, hearing, speaking, breathing, learning, working, sleeping, standing, lifting, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, helping, eating, bending, or operation of a bodily function.
Substantial Limitation: Significant restriction in the condition, manner or duration in which a major life activity is performed compared to most people.
Reasonable Accommodation: Any change in an educational environment that effectively and appropriately enables an individual with a disability to have equal educational opportunities to participate in programs and activities.
An accommodation is not reasonable if it:
- Poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others;
- Requires a substantial change to an essential element of course curricula or a substantial alteration in the manner in which services are offered or provided for other students; or
- Poses an undue financial or administrative burden
Undue Hardship or Burden: action that requires either significant difficulty or expense, or that would fundamentally alter the nature of a program. Factors to be considered include:
- The nature and cost of the accommodation needed, and
- The overall financial resources of the University.
Accessibility of Facilities
Herzing University facilities (including restrooms and classrooms) are designed to permit individuals with disabilities to enroll in and benefit from educational programs. Accessible parking provides convenient access to building entrances. Accessible parking spaces are reserved for students, visitors, or employees who display an appropriate state-issued placard or license plate.
Herzing University requests that students with service animals contact the ADA Coordinator to register their service animal. Higher education institutions may not require any documentation about the training or certification of a service animal. The University requires proof that a service animal has any vaccinations required by state or local laws that apply to all animals. The University reserves the right to make special modifications, within the confines of applicable law, to policies to reasonably accommodate the person requesting the accommodation. Emotional support animals, comfort animals, and therapy animals are not service animals under Title II and Title III of the ADA.
Under Title II and III of the ADA, service animals are limited to dogs. However, entities must make reasonable modifications in policies to allow individuals with disabilities to use miniature horses if they have been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for individuals with disabilities. The University may also assess the type, size, and weight of a miniature horse in determining whether or not the horse will be allowed access to the premises.
Emotional Support Animals on University Property
Emotional support animals are not permitted on any University property, including, but not limited to classrooms, computer labs, employment areas, libraries and clinic spaces.
Service Animals on University Property
Service animals are generally permitted to accompany people with disabilities on all University properties where students, faculty, staff, and visitors are allowed, in buildings/facilities. A service animal’s access to certain areas on University property may need to be limited should the service animal’s presence create an undue hardship to the University. Service animals must be housebroken (i.e., trained so that it controls its waste elimination, absent illness or accident) and must be kept under control by a harness, leash, or other tether unless the person is unable to hold those, or such use would interfere with the service animal’s performance of work or tasks. In such instances, the service animal must be kept under control by voice, signals, or other effective means. Individuals must comply with all applicable laws and regulations, including vaccination, licensure, animal health and leash laws.
Students needing a service animal are encouraged to work with the ADA Coordinator prior to bringing the service animal to campus to ensure reasonable accommodations are appropriately provided to the student. The service animal handler can best provide recommendations for faculty, staff, and students on procedures to interact with service animals. The ADA Coordinator can assist with this communication, if requested.
Faculty and staff (or applicants for employment positions) needing a service animal are encouraged to contact Human Resources prior to bringing the service animal to campus to ensure the accommodation request process is followed and reasonable accommodations are appropriately provided to the employee or applicant.
Exceptions and Exclusions to General Rules Applying to Service Animals on Campus
The University may impose some restrictions on, and may even exclude or ban, a service animal in certain instances. Restrictions or exclusions will be considered on a case-by-case basis in accordance with applicable laws. Access to University property may be restricted or revoked under the following circumstances.
Service Animal Creates a Direct Threat:
The service animal may be denied access to or banned from campus if it poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others that cannot be reduced or eliminated by reasonable modifications. An example of this would be a service animal that exhibits aggression or has injured a person or another animal. In considering whether an assistance animal poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others, the University will make an individualized assessment based on reasonable judgment, current medical knowledge, or the best available objective evidence to determine 1) the nature, duration, and severity of the risk; 2) the probability that the potential injury will actually occur; and 3) whether reasonable modifications of policies, practices, or procedures will mitigate the risk.
Service Animal is Uncontrolled:
A service animal may have its access to University property restricted or revoked if the assistance animal is out of control and the owner does not take effective action to gain and maintain control. An example of this may be an assistance animal that repeatedly gets loose and runs at large, even if it does not physically injure a person or other assistance animal.
Property Damage or Injury Caused by Service Animal:
The owner of a service animal is responsible for any damage to University or personal property and any injuries to individuals caused by their animal.
Improper/Inadequate Care for Service Animal:
Failure to properly care for a service animal may result in the animal’s access to University property being restricted or revoked. Additionally, if it appears that anyone has abused or neglected a service animal, the University may report the animal abuse or neglect to the appropriate authorities.
Service Animal is Not Housebroken or Maintained in a Healthy, Clean Manner:
Any individual utilizing a service animal on campus must ensure the animal is properly housebroken and/or trained. They must also ensure that the animal, and its environment, are maintained in a healthy, clean manner. The service animal owner is responsible for the removal and disposal of any waste products of the animal.
Service Animal Fundamentally Alters the Nature of an Educational Program:
Students may be denied the accommodation of a service animal in an academic setting if the animal’s presence fundamentally alters the nature of the educational program. An example of this may be a lab course that requires a sterile/clean working environment and the service animal’s presence would compromise the sanitation/operational standards for the lab. Another example may be a lab course involving the use of lab animals and the service animal’s presence will be disruptive to the lab animals. Clarifying note: This exception applies only to service animals, since emotional support animals are generally not permitted to accompany students to class (or to on-campus jobs).
Students with a service animal who are in a program with a clinical component must adhere to the guidelines for service animals established by each clinical facility they are assigned to. In many cases, a service animal may not be permitted to accompany a student to the clinical site due to health and safety standards at those clinical sites.