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Special Accommodations

Colgate is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to students with special housing or dietary needs. If you have individual needs or circumstances that warrant special consideration, there is a review process and committee designated for that purpose.
You must complete a special accommodations application (for returning students and new students) and submit it along with written documentation from a professional who is not related to you and who is qualified to evaluate your needs to Lynn Waldman, director of Academic Support and Disability Services. The special accommodation process is provided in greater detail below in the frequently asked questions.

The special housing accommodations process is intended to be a fair and effective means to address housing needs that likely cannot be met through the general room selection process. It begins with identifying the student's particular needs and then determining a housing placement that addresses those particular needs.  Please know that if your request is submitted after the application deadline, we cannot guarantee the same housing opportunities will be available to you.

Please note: if your need is related to dietary concerns, you must contact George Murray, director of Dining Services (315-228-7670).

To receive special consideration for housing assignments, you are required to submit a special accommodations application (for returning students and new students). Along with the application, make sure to attach complete and current documentation from a professional who is not a relative and who is qualified to address your needs. You may also send additional documentation to:

Lynn Waldman
Director of Academic Support and Disability Services
Center for Learning, Teaching and Research (gray building across from the Merrill House)
Colgate University
13 Oak Drive
Hamilton, NY 13346
315-228-7375
lwaldman@colgate.edu

If you have documentation on file with either the Office of Disability Services or the Student Health Service, you should confirm that it is up to date and make note of that on the application.

All information is considered confidential and appropriate information in the documentation is shared with Colgate’s Special Accommodations Committee solely for the purpose of determining appropriate and reasonable housing and dining accommodations.

Committee members:
  • Lynn Waldman, director of academic support and disability services, chair
  • Merrill Miller, MD, director of student health services
  • George Murray, director of campus dining services
  • Sue Smith, associate dean of the college
  • Brenda Ice, director of residential life
  • Ashley Weaver, office manager, residential life
  • Dawn LaFrance, counseling and psychological services

Common Questions

What kind of documentation is considered appropriate?
Documentation is a letter or report that provides a complete and current picture of the student’s functioning as it relates to living in a residential setting. It should include the nature of the condition and its severity, its impact on the student’s academic or social development, treatment plan, and recommended accommodations. If appropriate, supporting test results should be sent to appropriate offices where it will be maintained in confidential files and they should be updated as appropriate.
When can I request special housing accommodations?
Incoming first-year students are expected to submit a special housing accommodation application along with their housing preference form. Upper-class students are expected to submit the form by date listed on the application, which typically is near the end of February.
When and how will I find out whether I have been approved for a housing accommodation?
Students are notified in advance of other housing deadlines, which allows them to forfeit special accommodations in order to pursue other options.

Once the committee determines whether an accommodation is appropriate, the director of housing operations identifies possible placements, and contacts students by e-mail and phone.
Will I need to reapply each year?
Yes, if you want a special housing accommodation, you will need to submit a new application each year and provide updated documentation as appropriate.
Can I forego the special accommodations process and instead take my chances with the housing lottery?
You can choose to do so but the consequence is likely to be that fewer options, if any, will be available to you should you decide to pursue special housing accommodations at a later date.