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You Ask, We Answer: What accommodations does PLU provide?

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Four students walk down a sidewalk on campus, a brick building behind them. On either side of the sidewalk are black and yellow PLU banners hanging from the lamposts.
March 31, 2023

One of the most common questions that I receive as I am working with students that are considering PLU is “I had a 504 plan or an IEP in high school, what does that mean for me at PLU?”

At PLU, we are able to use a 504 plan or an IEP as documentation for an academic accommodation application. Starting at a new college requires a lot of hard work and we want to make the academic accommodation process smooth and efficient. A short application, submitting your 504 or IEP, and then a meeting with me are the three requirements to have accommodations activated at PLU.

In my role as the Director of the Office of Accessibility and Accommodation Resources, I am well equipped to read and review 504s and IEPs and determine how they will apply at PLU. Some of the most common accommodation requests that I receive are about extra time for testing, deadline flexibility, note support, and short breaks in class. We frequently provide those accommodations to students, but we are not limited to those. When it comes to accommodations in classes, I am very glad to get creative – one of the best parts of my work is getting to partner with students to identify solutions to accessibility needs.

At PLU the accommodation process is not just transactional. Beyond sending out the notifications of accommodation to your professors, I will also partner with you actively throughout your entire time as a student. All students that are registered with the Office of Accessibility and Accommodation resources are able to set up support meetings with me. These meetings cover a wide range of topics – I meet with a student and we build out a plan for their assignments for the next four weeks, sometimes I work with students to look at options at Outdoor Recreation or clubs, or there are times when students just want to come to my office and hang out with other students. I tell all of my students, “If you do not know where to ask your question, please come to me!”

There are a lot of considerations when it comes to selecting a college or university to attend and I want you to be able to make a decision with the full certainty that at PLU your accessibility is a priority to us. If you have any questions or want to connect please ask your admission counselor to introduce you to me.

I hope to meet you in the admission process and work with you throughout your time as a Lute!

Guest Blogger: Austin Beiermann ’18, Director of Accessibility and Accommodation Resources

Austin Beiermann has been part of the PLU community for nearly 10 years. Prior to his work in the Office of Accessibility and Accommodation Resources, he worked in the Center for Student Success supporting first-year students. Professionally, Austin has a passion for helping students navigate college systems in a smooth and efficient manner. He’s lived in Tacoma all his life, so be sure to ask him for recommendations on places to go, see – or most importantly – where to eat!