Bellevue College has multiple resources available for students impacted by COVID19. Please check out our general Resource Page and the Office for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion’s Resource Page, which include more community-based supports.
DRC staff love talking to people and are happy to come to your high school transition fair, resource class, family/parent night, or community resource fair! We are happy to:
- table for questions
- present/discuss our office or transitioning to higher education disability services in general
- present/discuss on disability justice and disability pride
- serve on panels about disability
- collaborate on other ideas
Please contact us and we’ll discuss how we can support disabled students in your organization!
We are also happy to be part of your high school group touring Bellevue College campus. Please contact the Welcome Center for a campus tour and relay you would like to have the DRC present to your group. The Welcome Center will contact us and we’ll handle things from there!
Please click a link below to jump to the relevant content further down this page:
- Student Success and Disability News
- Access and Concerns
- Service and Support Animals on Campus
- Financial Support for Disabled Students
- DRC Booklist
- Local Resources
- National Links and Resources
Student Success and Disability News
Steve graduated from high school in 2007 and there were many teachers at the school who didn’t think he would be able to go on to higher education. They thought his disability would prevent him from being successful. Steve proved them wrong when he graduated from Bellevue College in June 2013 with an Associates Degree with a concentration in Communications.
As a result of birth trauma, Steve was born with cerebral palsy, making it difficult for him to make his muscles do what his mind tells them to do. All of his limbs are affected, and with his “athletoid quadriplegic” cerebral palsy, he cannot walk independently. He uses a motorized wheelchair to get around campus. He types with one finger and is surprisingly fast.
In addition to physical disabilities, Steve has some learning differences. Math is especially hard since it is difficult for him to remember formulas. Bellevue College provided Steve with scanned textbooks as well as a note-taker when needed, and he was allowed extra time to finish tests.
It took Steve six years to finish his degree, but he is very proud of his accomplishments. In addition to his class work, Steve was involved in the college leadership program and in student clubs, and he obtained a job as a Peer 2 Peer coordinator. At a Student of Color conference in Yakima, WA in 2013, he led a workshop on Identity for People with Disabilities.
Steve is an international athlete and has competed in Track and Field — receiving a gold medal in 2010 in the Czech Republic, and a silver medal at the 2013 Paralympic Trials in Indiana.
In 2012, Steve started a non-profit organization to advocate for people with disabilities. He speaks at local colleges and intends to cross the country to spread the word about what it’s like to live a disabled life.
In 2015, Steve was voted “2015 BEST College Athlete” and “2015 BEST Amateur Athlete” in KING TV’s The Best of Western Washington.
Check out more student success stories and disability-related news!
Access and Concerns
Bellevue College (BC) is committed to providing equal and appropriate access to all programs, services and facilities. If you have a concern about accessibility, we have listed below are different categories so that you can report the concern to the right people.
BC aims for conformance with WCAG 2.0 level AA; all college websites are required to comply with college information accessibility policies, procedures, and standards, which address the same minimum requirements for accessibility as Section 508 laws. If you notice accessibility issues with any BC website, please report website accessibility issues!
Entries and Elevators
BC maintains a Campus Accessibility Map covering ramps, elevators, gender neutral bathrooms, mothering rooms, bus stops, and other public bathrooms. Additionally, there is a general Campus Map, Parking Map, and a Bus & Bicycle Map. Please contact the DRC so we can work to resolve problems if you find information missing or inaccurate on these maps, find an automatic door broken or poorly functioning, or encounter another access barrier (e.g. broken elevator, construction/landscaping/event blocking access).
BC provides reserved parking spaces for students, staff, and visitors with disabilities in most parking lots, each level of parking garage; lot C7 on the west side of campus is designated entirely for disabled parking. If all designated disabled parking spaces are full, cars displaying a disabled parking placard, plate, decal or tab are legally allowed to park in any faculty/staff or student parking space on campus; you may not park in fire lanes, bus zones, driveways, etc. If you park in a reserved space without the permit showing, you can be cited with a Bellevue College parking ticket. Read more on the WA State Licensing for Disabled Parking.
If you want to report a vehicle in a parking space for those with disabilities, that does not have a valid WA disability parking permit, please contact Public Safety in D171 near the Library Media Center or by calling 425-564-2400.
Service and Support Animals on Campus
The Department of Justice/ADA rule defines service animal as a dog or miniature horse that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability; Washington State allows any animal that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability. Dogs and animals not trained to perform tasks that mitigate the effects of a disability, including dogs and animals used purely for emotional support, comfort, therapeutic benefit, companionship, are not service animals but instead are support animals.
Service animals are working animals, not pets. The work or task a service animal has been trained to provide must be directly related to the person’s disability. Examples of such work or tasks include:
- guiding people who are blind
- alerting people who are deaf
- pulling a wheelchair
- alerting and protecting a person who is having a seizure
- reminding a person with mental illness to take prescribed medications
- calming a person with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) during an anxiety attack
If you would like to discuss if your support animal as a potential Emotional Support Animals (ESA) accommodation for housing and/or academic buildings, please contact us!
Service animals must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered, unless these devices interfere with the service animal’s work or the individual’s disability prevents using these devices. In that case, the individual must maintain control of the animal through voice, signal, or other effective controls. Service animals must be fully housebroken, clean, and in good health. Service animal users must abide by current city ordinances/laws pertaining to licensing and vaccination requirements for service animals; it is the responsibility of the user to know about these ordinances and laws. All users are responsible to clean up after and properly disposing of their animal’s waste and may be charged through Student Conduct for inappropriate animal behavior or facility cleaning fees. Students using a service animal on campus are encouraged but not required to contact the DRC to discuss your rights and responsibilities and ways the DRC can support you; employees who bring a service animal to campus are encouraged to contact Human Resources.
Support animals must be approved by the DRC as an ESA prior to entering any BC building, including housing. Approved ESAs must be harnessed, leashed, tethered or in a container at all times on campus outside of a student’s approved room in housing. ESAs must be fully housebroken, clean, and in good health. ESA owners must abide by current city ordinances/laws pertaining to licensing and vaccination requirements for service animals; it is the responsibility of the owner to know about these ordinances and laws. All owners are responsible to clean up after and properly disposing of their animal’s waste and may be charged through Student Conduct for inappropriate animal behavior or facility cleaning fees.
Inquiries Regarding Animals
When it is not obvious what service an animal provides, only limited inquiries are allowed to determine if an animal is a service animal. BC staff may ask two questions:
- Is the dog or animal a service animal required because of a disability?
- What work or task has the dog or service animal been trained to perform? (Staff who are unsure if an answer to question 2 is adequate may contact the DRC to consult with the Director or designee.)
By law, staff cannot ask about:
- the person’s disability
- medical documentation
- require a special identification card or training documentation for the service animal
- to have the service animal demonstrate its ability to perform the work or task listed.
Allergies and fear of service animals or approved ESAs are not valid reasons for denying access or refusing service to people using service animals. When a person who is allergic or afraid of a service animal or approved ESA and a person who uses one of these must spend time in the same room or facility, they both should be assigned to different locations within the room or different rooms in the facility. An individual with a service animal may not be segregated from other students. If there are concerns on this issue, please contact the DRC.
Exclusions of Service Animals and Approved ESAs
Unless the service animal or approved ESA is not meeting behavioral or sanitary expectations, a person with a disability cannot be asked to remove the animal from the premises. A disabled person may be asked to remove the animal from the premises if the animal is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it or the animal is not housebroken.
An animal may be excluded from a facility, including a classroom, if:
- the animal poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others (allergies do not constitute a direct threat)
- the animal’s behavior, such as barking, is disruptive to the other participants within the facility and is not related to the task the service animal has been trained to perform (e.g. bark to notify the user to take medicine or alert to an on-coming seizure)
When there is legitimate reason to ask that a service animal be removed, staff must offer the user the opportunity to return to the classroom or activity without the animal’s presence. An animal may be excluded from the college temporarily or permanently if it is found to be in violation of the above requirement; this is determined by the Manager of Student Conduct.
Concerns Regarding Service Animals and Approved ESAs
Anyone with a concern about the behavior of a service animal or approved ESA should direct their concern to the ADA Compliance Officer in Human Resources. The ADA Compliance Officer will investigate the concern, may consult with the DRC Director or designee, and determine an appropriate outcome. Any person who wishes to appeal a decision related to a service animal should pursue resolution through the appropriate complaint resolution procedures (see Complaint Resolution Policy).
Financial Support for Disabled Students
The DRC does not have funding for classes. There are a variety of Bellevue College-related financial options:
- Bellevue College Foundation Scholarships
- The Financial Aid office
- Center for Career Connections & Women’s Center
- Multicultural Student Services
- Basic Food Employment and Training Program
- Additionally, Washington State’s Division of Vocational Rehabilitation may be an option for some students.
Below are external funding options. The DRC does not evaluate or vet these opportunities; please be sure to investigate fully before applying.
- Washington State Opportunity Scholarship
- University HQ List of Scholarships for Students with Disabilities
- Incight Scholarships
- Financial Resources and Scholarships for Students with Disabilities
- National Federation for the Blind Scholarship
- College Scholarships and Resources for Students with Disabilities
Ever wanted to learn more about the Disability Rights Movement, the fight for passing the Americans with Disabilities Act, or disability culture? Check out this growing list of resources, all of which are available for check out at the Bellevue College Library Media Center for free if you’re a BC student, staff, or faculty!
- Occupying Disability: Critical Approaches to Community, Justice, and Decolonizing Disability, Pamela Block, Devva Kasnitz, Akemi Nishida, Nick Pollard, editors
- DisCrit–Disability Studies and Critical Race Theory in Education by David J. Connor, Beth A. Ferri, & Subini A. Annamma
- Philosophies and Practices of Emancipatory Nursing: Social Justice as Praxis, Paula N. Kagan, Marlaine C. Smith, Peggy L. Chinn, editors
- Disability Incarcerated: Imprisonment and Disability in the United States and Canada, L. Ben-Moshe, C. Chapman, A. Carey, editors; foreword by Angela Y. Davis
- American Indian Health and Nursing, Margaret P. Moss PhD JD RN FAAN, editor
- The Oxford Handbook of Indigenous American Literature, James H. Cox, Daniel Heath Justice, editors
- Asegi Stories: Cherokee Queer and Two-Spirit Memory by Dr. Qwo-Li Driskill
- Black Kripple Delivers Poetry & Lyrics by Leroy Franklin Moore
- Indigenous Pop: Native American Music from Jazz to Hip Hop, Dr. Jeff Berglund, Dr. Jan Johnson, Dr. Kimberli Lee, editors
- Dirty river: A Queer Femme of Color Dreaming Her Way Home by Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha
- Writing the Walls Down: A Convergence of LGBTQ Voices, Helen Klonaris, Amir Rabiyah, editors
- Survivance, Sovereignty, and Story: Teaching American Indian Rhetorics, Lisa King, Rose Gubele, Joyce Rain Anderson, editors
- Federal Disability Law in a Nutshell 5th Edition by Ruth Colker
- Disability and Teaching by Susan Gabel, David Connor
- Race, Culture And Disability: Rehabilitation Science And Practice by Fabricio E. Balcazar, Yolanda Suarez-Balcazar, Tina Taylor-Ritzler, Christopher B. Keys
- Loud Hands: Autistic People, Speaking, Autistic Self-Advocacy Network, editor
- Beauty is a Verb: The New Poetry of Disability, Jennifer Bartlett, Sheila Black and Michael Northen, editors
- Blackness and Disability: Critical Examinations and Cultural Interventions, Christopher M. Bell, editor
- Exile and Pride: Disability, Queerness and Liberation by Eli Clare
- Trauma Queen: A Memoir by Lovemme Corazon
- In the Kingdom of the Sick: A Social History of Chronic Illness in America by Laurie Edwards
- Disability Studies: An Interdisciplinary Introduction by Dan Goodley
- Representing Disability in an Ableist World: Essays on Mass Media by Beth A. Haller
- Introduction to American Deaf Culture by Thomas K. Holcomb
- Stage Turns: Canadian Disability Theater by Kirsty Johnston
- Feminist, Queer, Crip by Alison Kafer
- Hidden Treasure of Black ASL: Its History and Structure, Carolyn McCaskill, et al, editors
- Kindling: Writings on the Body by Aurora Levins Morales
- Body and Soul: The Black Panther Party and the Fight against Medical Discrimination by Alondra Nelson
- Disability History of the United States by Kim E. Nielsen
- Mad at School: Rhetorics of Mental Disability and Academic Life by Margaret Price
- Don’t Call Me Inspirational: A Disabled Feminist Talks Back by Harilyn Russo
- Criptiques, Caitlin Wood, editor
- AccessSTEM-Alliance for students with disabilities in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics: A program helping educators and employers make classroom and employment opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics accessible to individuals with disabilities, and providing a place to share promising practices.
- Adult Literacy / ESL at Bellevue College: Offering classes to help improve literacy skills, earn a GED (high school equivalency) or learn English.
- Aging & Disability Services Administration (ADSA): Serving adults with chronic illnesses or conditions, and people of all ages with developmental disabilities, mental health disorders, or substance use disorders.
- American Psychological Association’s Guidelines for writing about disability.
- Brain Injury Association of Washington: Dedicated to increasing public awareness, support, and hope for those affected by brain injury.
- Diversity Caucus, Bellevue College: An affinity group of faculty, administrators, staff, and students at Bellevue College committed to the improvement of the diversity profile at the college.
- Emerald City Resource Guide: a searchable database listing local resources by type of support of identity of person needing support.
- Hearing, Speech, and Deafness Center: Helping all people realize their full communication potential and connect on their own terms.
- Seattle Counselors Association: A non-profit professional community of mental health practitioners providing referrals for people looking for a counselor.
- University of Washington Do-It Program: Promoting the success of individuals with disabilities in post-secondary education and careers, using technology as an empowering tool.
- Venture Program, Bellevue College: A program giving adults with cognitive disabilities the opportunity to acquire an accredited college degree leading to post-graduation employment.
- The Veterans Center, UW Do-It Program: Providing a space for post-secondary faculty and administrators to learn about how to create classroom environments and campus activities that maximize the learning of all students, including veterans who have disabilities.
- Washington Assistive Technology Act Program: Providing Assistive Technology resources and expertise to all Washingtonians with disabilities to aid in making decisions and obtaining the technology and related services needed for employment, education and independent living.
- Washington Association on Post-secondary Education and Disability: Providing professional development for disability service providers in higher education for over 30 years.
- Washington Student Achievement Council: Established as a new cabinet-level state agency on July 1, 2012, the Washington Student Achievement Council provides strategic planning, oversight, and advocacy to support increased student success and higher levels of educational attainment in Washington.
- Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges: One System. 34 Colleges. Unlimited Possibilities. Washington’s community and technical colleges prepare nearly 500,000 students each year for careers, to transfer to four-year colleges and universities, and with new skills for better lives.
- Washington State Department of Licensing – Disabled Parking: Find out how to get disabled parking privileges, what to do to renew your disabled parking placard, tabs, or plates. Learn how to use your decal and identification card, where you can park, and how to report disabled parking abuse.
- Washington State Division of Vocational Rehabilitation: Helping individuals with disabilities to participate fully in their communities and become employed is our purpose and passion.
- Washington State Human Rights Commission: Eliminating and preventing discrimination through the fair application of the law, the efficient use of resources, and the establishment of productive partnerships in the community.
- Washington State Psychological Association: Supporting psychologists and psychologists-in-training and promoting the practice of psychology in order to maintain the vitality of the profession in the public interest.
- Winter Weather Preparedness Guide
National Links and Resources
- Association of Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD): Professional association committed to full participation of persons with disabilities in postsecondary education.
- American Foundation of the Blind: Expanding possibilities for people with vision loss.
- Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired: Promoting self-esteem & independence for the blind and visually impaired.
- American Heart Association: Building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.
- American Speech-Language Hearing Association: National association for more than 173,070 audiologists, speech-language pathologists, speech, language, and hearing scientists, audiology and speech-language pathology support personnel, and students.
- Arthritis Foundation: The largest non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention, control, and cure of America’s leading cause of disability.
- Black, Disabled, and Proud: Available through the Historically Black College and University (HBCU) Disability Consortium, this website is for Black and African American college students with disabilities, and has many resources that may be of interest to all college students, parents, faculty, staff, and disability service providers.
- Blindness Resource Center: A digital resource maintained by The New York Institute for Special Education — a private, nonprofit, nonsectarian educational facility which provides quality programs for children who are blind or visually disabled, emotionally and learning disabled and preschoolers who are developmentally delayed.
- Brain and Spinal Cord Injury Survivors: A Web site maintained by the law firm Newsome Melton LLP who specialize in cases of brain and spinal cord injury.
- Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation at Boston University: A research, training, and service organization dedicated to improving the lives of persons who have psychiatric disabilities.
- USA.gov Disability Services: The federal government website connecting you to important information about disability benefits, health care and housing programs, as well as tools and resources for students making the transition from high school to college or work.
- Epilepsy Foundation: Aimed at stopping seizures and SUDEP, finding a cure and overcoming the challenges created by epilepsy through efforts including education, advocacy and research to accelerate ideas into therapies.
- Foundation Fighting Blindness: Driving research to save and restore sight.
- GhostReader: Can read Word, RTF, PDF and HTML files. It can also convert documents to mp3 audio format for listening on the go. 15 Day trial, comes with high-quality voices at no additional cost.
- Learning Disability & ADHD Online: Seeking to help children and adults reach their full potential by providing accurate and up-to-date information and advice about learning disabilities and ADHD.
- Mark Wellman’s website, No Limits: The inspirational Web site for a nationally acclaimed author, filmmaker and motivational speaker who was paralyzed due to a mountain climbing accident.
- Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research: Dedicated to finding a cure for Parkinson’s disease through an aggressively funded research agenda and to ensuring the development of improved therapies for those living with Parkinson’s today.
- National Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA): Non-profit whose mission is to provide information, resources and networking opportunities to help adults with Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) lead better lives.
- National Center for Learning Disabilities: Improving the lives of all people with learning difficulties and disabilities by empowering parents, enabling young adults, transforming schools, and creating policy and advocacy impact.
- National Library of Medicine “Pub Med” Search Engine: The free searchable database PubMed comprises more than 23 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books.
- National Organization of Rare Disorders: Providing advocacy, education and other services to improve the lives of all people affected by rare diseases.
- Natural Reader: Reads Word, RTF, PDF and HTML files. It can also convert documents to mp3 audio format for listening on the go. Free version and 30 day trial of professional version available; option to purchase high-quality voices. Free version can only read text files.
- Project Gutenberg: Offers a library catalog of over 42,000 free ebooks: choose among free epub books, free kindle books, download them or read them online.
- Learning Ally: A national nonprofit with a defined approach to help support students with learning disabilities and their families. (Recording for the dyslexic.)
- ReadPlease 2003: Can read TXT files only. Option to purchase full version and high-quality voices. ReadPlease has not been updated in a couple of years, but is still widely used. Free.
- Selective Mutism Group: Information from the Selective Mutism Group and Childhood Anxiety Network.
- Spinal Cord Injury Information Network: The UAB at Birmingham offers this resource to promote knowledge in the areas of research, health and quality of life for people with spinal cord injuries, their families, and SCI-related professionals.
- Text Aloud: Reads Word, RTF, PDF and HTML files. It can also convert documents to mp3 audio format for listening on the go. Free 30 day trial, option to purchase high-quality voices at discounted price.
- Traumatic Brain Injury Rehabilitation and Resources at CNS: Delivering post-acute medical treatment, therapeutic rehabilitation and disease management services with specially-trained staff for individuals recovering from acquired brain injury.
- Type It, Read It: Can read text files and “cut and paste text.” Free.
- Web Accessibility in Mind (Web AIM), University of Utah: Empowering organizations to make their web content accessible to people with disabilities.
Last Updated May 21, 2020