Student Accessibility and Accommodations

PVCC is dedicated to the belief that students with disabilities should have equal opportunity to develop and extend their skills and knowledge. We strive to maintain a barrier-free environment and provide appropriate support services necessary to ensure your access to our educational programs. 

The Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations is available to advise and assist you. Please call, email or stop by for assistance. See contact information at left.

PVCC is a Virginia Relay partner. For students who are deaf please use www.varelay.org.

PVCC complies with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Need more information? View the handbook and policy below. 


Hours of Operation

Monday-Thursday 8:30 am- 5:30 pm. Friday 8 am-5 pm. After hour appointments can also be arranged, if needed. 

Contact Us

Please email Kari Hirst, Khirst@pvcc.edu, to schedule an in-person, phone or Zoom meeting. Current students can also make appointments though NAVIGATE in the MYPVCC accounts.

Need resources? Visit the PVCC Financial Resource Center


Frequently Asked Questions

What is a disability?

The Americans with Disabilities Act defines a person with a disability as an individual who has a physical or mental limitation that "substantially limits one or more major life activities". Major life activities include reading, learning, writing, performing calculations, walking, seeing, hearing and speaking.

What should I do if I have been diagnosed with a disability or medical illness and need accommodations?

Please make an appointment with the Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations and present documentation of your disability. Once accommodations are approved letters will be developed for your instructors and they will either be emailed to your instructors or you may be responsible for giving the letters to your instructors during the first week of class.

Will professors know my diagnosis?

Specific diagnoses are not mentioned in the accommodation letters. You are encouraged to discuss your needs with faculty as early as possible in the semester but you do not have to disclose your specific disability. If a faculty member requests more information, general information about your difficulty may be offered. 

I am unsure about talking to my instructors about my need for accommodations. How should I approach them?

Most of the faculty here at PVCC have worked with students with disabilities and have provided accommodations to them. They also receive guidance from the Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations. We encourage you to communicate your needs early in the semester and also recommend that you meet with your instructors during their office hours or after class. Before class and during class are typically not convenient times for an instructor to talk to you.

What should I do it I am struggling in my classes and I think I may have a disability?

Make an appointment to meet with the Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations. They will assess your situation and assist you by making a referral to a local testing provider, if needed. 

How do I receive assistance if I have a disability, which may include mental health or medical concerns?

  1. Prior to enrolling in classes at PVCC, contact the Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations. You will need to request accommodations before or at the beginning of each semester. You can email, call 434.961.5281 or stop by Room M136A in the Main Building.
  2. Provide documentation (psychological, educational and/or medical evaluations) to the Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations.
  3. Discuss the accommodations you need and which strategies you can use to be successful. (See Do you have any tips for college success?, below.)
  4. After registering for classes and prior to the first day of classes, provide a copy of your class schedule to the Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations. They will develop accommodation letters for your classes.
  5. Meet with each of your instructors to discuss your accommodations. We recommend that you meet with instructors during their office hours or after class, if time is available. Before class and during class are typically not convenient times for an instructor to talk to you.
  6. Contact the Office of Student Accessibility and Accommodations as soon as possible if you are having any problems with your classes or with your accommodations.

 

What types of services and accommodations does PVCC provide to students with disabilities?

Services may include assistive technology, sign language interpreters, testing accommodations, study skills and time management strategies. We will collaborate with you to determine the appropriate reasonable accommodations and services that you need, based on the information that you provide to us. (See How do I get help at PVCC?, above.) The Office of Student Accessibility and  Accommodations is available to consult with diagnosticians regarding requirements for your specific disabilities.

Do you have any tips for college success?

  • Have a good understanding of your disability and how it affects your learning.
  • Be aware of your strengths and weaknesses. (We all have them!)
  • Become a self advocate. We encourage you to communicate your needs and utilize available resources.
  • Use the accommodations and resources available to you. Ask for help and feel comfortable asking questions.
  • Work hard and allow the time you need to manage college work.