Welcome to the Student Disability Service

Students working together on Parrish Beach

Swarthmore College welcomes students with disabilities to participate fully in all aspects of college life.  Our mission is to ensure that students with physical, medical, learning or psychological disabilities are provided with equal access to all college programs, activities and services.  Our policy is consistent with relevant governmental statues and regulations, including those pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (amended in 2008), Title IX of the Federal Education Amendments of 1972 and Section 504 of the Federal Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

Arranging AccommodationsRegistering | Housing & Dining Accommodations

Coordinator of Student Disability Services Leslie Hempling advises students about the College's policy, procedure and resources, reviews students' clinical documentation and collaborates with students, faculty and staff to arrange reasonable accommodations that support students' individual needs. 

Arranging Accommodations

The Student Disability Service is happy to work with students with documented disabilities to identify appropriate accommodations.  Reasonable accomodations refer to modifications that provide students with disabilities equal access to college programs and activities.  Accomodations may include the elimination of physical barriers, extended time on tests, notetakers, recording devices, captioning, sign language interpreters, calculator use, computer use, electronic books, screen-readers, voice recognition and other adaptive software or hardware for computers. An accommodation is not considered reasonable if it fundamentally alters the essential elements of an academic program. Please be aware that the Student Disability Service is not able to provide retroactive accommodations. Students need to register with the Student Disability Service first and submit clinical documentation of a disability. Accommodations begin once the student has a formal accommodations letter.


Registering with the Student Disability Service

Please contact Leslie Hempling, Coordinator of Student Disability Services, at lhempli1@swarthmore.edu or 610-690-5014 to arrange an intake appointment. We are happy to hold initial appointments for incoming students by phone.  If at all possible, please submit documentation of your disability in advance so that we can review it prior to talking with you. We recommend that you contact us as early as possible since some accommodations (e.g., electronic books, interpreters, etc.) can take a several weeks to arrange.  We want to be sure that your needs are met in time for classes.

Visit the Accommodations Process and the Documentation Guidelines  sections in the "For Students" section of this website for all details.


Important Note about Housing and Dining Accommodations

If you are seeking Housing Accommodations, please also visit the Disabilty Housing Accommodations site to begin that process.

If you are seeking dining accommodations for food allergies and related dining issues, please submit a food allergy/intolerance form to Dining Services. Dining Services will contact you to discuss your needs.