Processes for Prospective Students/Students with Housing Accommodations
University of California, Merced, ("UC Merced" or the "University") provides reasonable housing accommodations to residents with disabilities. It is a resident's responsibility to make their disability known to the University. Housing accommodations are given consideration upon request and on a case-by-case basis; reasonable accommodations are determined based on documented need. This process is primarily focused on academic year housing.
Requests will be reviewed by Student Accessibility Services (SAS). Accommodation decisions will consider the resident's disability-related need(s) in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Fair Housing Act, and other relevant federal, state, and campus regulations. Once accommodations are verified by SAS, housing will determine how to accommodate the student based on the verified need. Accommodations cannot be verified for individuals who did not meet all housing deadlines or are otherwise ineligible to live with Student Housing.
A reasonable accommodation is a change, exception, or adjustment to a rule, policy, practice, or service that may be necessary for a person with disabilities to have an equal opportunity to use and enjoy a dwelling, including public and common use spaces, or to fulfill their program obligations. Please note that the ADA often refers to these types of accommodations as “modifications.”
Resident: any student, university employee, family member, or other individual residing with Student Housing
Disability: a mental or physical impairment that limits the individual in a major life activity, as defined under the ADA
- University employees should contact Human Resources for housing accommodation procedures.
- Conference participants, guests or family members residing in housing should contact conference or event organizers for housing accommodation procedures
Prospective students with disabilities
- Prospective students who have not submitted their Statement of Intent to Register (SIR)/applied for housing may consult with Housing and/or Student Accessibility Services on general services and options for dietary needs.
- Housing is available for a general consultation on housing options.
- Student Accessibility Services is available for a general consultation on services and addressing anticipated needs.
- After submitting a Statement of Intent to Register (SIR), a student may submit a Student Accessibility Services Accommodation Request form available at access.ucmerced.edu to engage in an interactive process about housing accommodations.
Procedure for Students Requesting an Accommodation in Housing
- Residents must apply for campus housing and followed all necessary procedures for application prior to requesting accommodations.
- Requests for accommodations can be done concurrently with the housing application (steps 3-4 below)
- Priority date to complete SAS accommodation documentation for fall assignments is May 2, 2022
- In order to request housing accommodations, residents must complete Student Accessibility Services Accommodation Request form available at access.ucmerced.edu to engage in an interactive process about housing accommodations. Students are encouraged to submit documentation about their needs prior to meeting. This documentation would be comprehensive, written within a reasonable timeframe relative to the disability and include information on their specific circumstances and underlying causes. It should come from a non-familial, treating, licensed professional. Incomplete information may slow or delay the accommodation approval process.
- If accommodation needs are verified, Student Accessibility Services (SAS) communicate these needs to housing services.
Providing for Verfied Accommodations For Students
- Housing may contact the student to facilitate accommodations or housing may send information about the accommodation if no additional information is needed (e.g., template outreach for approved assistance animals). If the student has questions about how the verified accommodation will be implemented they contact at email@example.com
- If needed, Student Accessibility Services (SAS) and Residence Education/Housing Operations will meet to discuss the student need and finalize reasonable accommodations. Students may be involved in these meetings, if needed. These meetings will typically involve discussing logistics and finding the best way of providing accommodations that meet the specific needs of the student. This meeting shall occur within 7 business days of SAS verifying the student’s accommodation needs.
- While a student’s disability diagnosis and documentation will be held in confidence with Student Accessibility Services, Housing staff (RLCs, RAs, facilities) may be informed of certain accommodations as it relates to their interaction. For example, staff will be notified of Service Animals and Assistance Animals.
Confirmation of Student Housing Assignments
- SAS handles the request process - contacts student about the accommodation request and follow up with an email confirmation.
- SAS informs Housing Services of the priority approval decision, email confirmation to students (on going).
- SAS sends priority approved lists to Housing Services.
- Housing Services complete priority housing accommodation housing assignments and emails housing accommodation priority housing assignment to students.
Parking and Temporary Transportation Needs for Residents in University Housing
- Please make note of any parking accommondation needs related to your housing during your interactive process with Student Accessiblity Services (SAS). Housing will work to faciltate housing assignments near appropriate parking areas when appropriate.
- Parking permitting processes and temporary transportation needs are coordinated by Transportation and Parking Services (TAPS). Information about applying for parking permit, disabled persons parking placard or transportation on campus for temporary disabilities is available on taps.ucmerced.edu website
- Resident Assistant student staff shall work with Student Accessibility Services on accommodation requests. Faculty and staff living or working in housing shall work with Human Resources on accommodation requests.
- Applications and requests for specific housing locations or rooms will be taken into consideration as preferences; however, priority will be given to reasonably satisfying the approved accommodation, regardless of location preference.
- Student Housing is currently unable to guarantee single rooms based on a desire for a quiet and distraction free study space.
- If a student is unable to care for themselves, they will need to provide a personal attendant and arrange access with housing. The university does not provide personal attendants or personal care assistance.
- Depending on the time of year, housing options may be limited due to occupancy. Submission of a request in advance allows for arrangements to be made to meet the resident's need(s). Requests for accommodations must be placed in advance of deadlines posted on the housing website for the upcoming academic semester. If a request is made after this date, Student Housing cannot guarantee that it will be able to meet the student’s request. Accommodations requests after deadlines will be made as units become available.
- Once a student's housing accommodation request is approved, the approval is granted for the duration of their time living on campus. Students do not need to resubmit the housing accommodation request the following term or academic year.