DRC has established a fund development goal of $15 million by 2016 to expand programming, focus on critical priorities and create partnerships:
- Naming Opportunities
- Adaptive Athletics
- Disabled Veterans Reintegration and Education Project
- Technology Center
Disability Resource Center- Naming Opportunities
Named Center: $5 million endowment or $200K annually
Named Spaces: $50,000 to $500,000
- Technology Center
- Adaptive Athletics Gym
- Test Administration Center
Named Program: $4.5 million endowment or $180,000 annually
Scholarships: $5 million endowments or $200,000 annually
Equipment: $3 million endowments or $120,000 annually
The largest and most successful program of its type in the country, Adaptive Athletics provides disabled students and community members with opportunities to participate fully in the higher education experience. The Department of Veterans Affairs has established that providing competitive and recreational athletic opportunities can lessen the challenges faced by disabled veterans. Funding will support on-going programming of events, as well as maintenance of equipment.
Disabled Veterans Reintegration and Education Project
Named Program: $1.5 million endowment or $50,000 annually
Annual Sports and Wellness Camps and athletics initiatives: $30,000 annually
Energy Therapies Program: $15,000 annually
Disability Resources was awarded a congressionally-directed grant in July 2008, the Disabled Veterans Reintegration and Education Project (DVRE). The DVRE provided the impetus for the University to launch several campus initiatives for enrolled and prospective student veterans and create a ‘veteran-friendly’ campus. Since 2008, approximately 500 veterans have utilized a program or service supported by the DVRE. While many of these initiatives have been institutionalized, funding from the grant ends in June, 2012. With your support Disability Resources could sustain the athletics and wellness programming initiated under the grant. These initiatives provide opportunities for veteran students to process symptoms related to new disabilities, post-traumatic stress disorder, and the after-effects of war.
Named Center: $2 million endowment or $80K annually
The Disability Resource Center houses a state-of-the-art computer facility that supports students and serves as a community resource. The Technology Center provides specialized tools for students and staff with disabilities, including advanced screen reading, text to speech, voice recognition, screen magnification, and Braille output technology. The Center serves as a product demonstration and training facility for students, faculty, staff and community members. The Center is used by over 500 individuals each semester.
With the rapid evolution of technology, the Center’s purpose requires that it house the most recent versions of adaptive technology hardware and software. Funding will ensure that campus and community members have access to the most advanced assistive technology solutions.
The University of Arizona’s Disability Resource Center (DRC) is nationally recognized as the premiere service center in higher education. It has been an integral part of the University for over 40 years and leads the campus in the creation of usable, equitable, inclusive, and sustainable learning and working environments. Through services, consultation, collaboration and programming, staff engages the campus community in dialogue and partnerships that redefine access both within and beyond the bounds of the University. The DRC houses a state-of-the-art assistive technology lab and a comprehensive adaptive athletic training center that is home to five competitive athletic teams. The DRC’s staff is active in the academic mission of the University: teaching undergraduate and graduate courses; engaging in research activities; and consulting nationally and internationally.
DRC’s commitment to facilitating access, discourse and involvement through innovative services, programs, leadership and collaboration has made the University of Arizona a place of possibility and a destination for high-achieving students with disabilities.
The disability community is the largest single minority group in the United States, numbering over 54 million people. Like many minority groups, people with disabilities have had difficulty accessing many of the benefits of our society. For example, disabled individuals continue to be more likely to live in poverty and be dependent on governmental services and less likely to be employed than non-disabled people. Despite the fact that earning a bachelor’s degree nearly equalizes a disabled individual’s access to employment, students with disabilities are less likely to transition to higher education, be retained, and graduate.
National trends suggest the number and diversity of students, faculty and staff with disabilities will continue to increase. At its inception in 1970, DRC’s work was with approximately 150 University students with mobility, hearing and vision disabilities. Today the program serves over 2,000 students, faculty/staff and campus visitors who represent all disability communities annually. WE anticipate this growth to continue as unprecedented numbers of returning veterans with disabilities enroll in college.
There is a pressing need to ensure access to programs, services, courses, and employment and to change the way in which disability is perceived and responded to. The DRC will be most effective in fulfilling its role in this work through collaborative partnerships.
- Recognized nationally as one of the top disability resource offices in higher education: staff consults nationally and internationally, participates in training and program review activities and serves in leadership roles for numerous professional associations
- Successfully designed and implemented The University of Arizona’s Disabled Veterans Reintegration and Education Project to receive an earmark for $350,000 through a partnership with Congressman Raul Grijalva.
- Offered Gateway to Success freshmen transition class that was funded through a competitive Gateway grant and provided free laptop computers to enrolled students.
- Redesigned the traditional disability service paradigm to move service provision from an individual, deficit focus to a focus on the design of inclusive environments and to integrate lessons learned through Disability Studies scholarship
- 2009-2010 athletic accomplishments
76 athletes - 5 competitive sport teams
1st place in L.A. marathon female division
3rd place men’s National Wheelchair Basketball Association Championship Division
3rd place United States Quad Rugby Division I Nationals
5th place women’s National Wheelchair Basketball Association Women’s Division
“It is impossible to summarize the enormous affect the DRC has had on my education at the UA. There are countless examples of how the DRC staff members have demonstrated that they are dedicated to helping me succeed. My time as a participant of the University of Arizona Adaptive Athletics Program was truly the boost that brought my athletic career to the next level of excellence. Having grown up in rural Iowa, I knew I wanted to compete, but had no idea what potential lied in store. When I arrived in Tucson I suddenly had access to coaching and fellow athletes to chase around the track, not to mention limitless academic opportunities. I went from an average racer to a Paralympic Champion, from a whimsical pre-med student to a future doctor at Stanford University School of Medicine, and from an unsure teenager to a confident adult, proud of my identity as a person with a disability. I will always remember the U of A as a place where my dreams became reality."
Cheri Blauwet, Graduate
"Having a world-class technology team making sure my books could be read by my computer or the materials from my class converted to an accessible format in a timely manner, significantly reduced my stress level, and gave me the same opportunity as the other students in the class to be successful. My access consultant, the testing center, technology lab, and the seamless coordination behind the scenes made it possible for me to attain my academic goals. I measure this success by my GPA and diploma."
Amanda Hines, Undergraduate Student
“I came to the University of Arizona in 2004 and registered with the Disability Resource Center as a visually impaired student. After receiving my Bachelor of Arts degree, I was accepted into a graduate program. This life-altering process was made possible through the continued guidance by my advisor, the access to assistive technology and personalized testing accommodations, and especially the support and sense of community at the DRC.”
Daniel Standage, Veteran
“After my accident part of my recovery plan was to get involved in the UA Adaptive Athletic Program at the Disability Resource Center. I didn’t know what to expect when I thought about competing in sports after my accident. I just wasn’t sure how athletic my “new” body would allow me to be. I was amazed the first time I saw the Quad-Rugby team play; it is a very fast hard-hitting sport! I was very nervous starting out, but as I progressed I realized that I had the potential to become a competitive athlete once again. It also gave me the motivation and the opportunity to finish getting my degree.”
Jeff Odom, student veteran