The MD Anderson Cancer Center UTHealth Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences is committed to providing equal opportunities for qualified students with disabilities in accordance with state and federal laws and regulations. See the UTHealth Handbook of Operating Procedures, Policy 101, for the complete policy and links to the required forms.. The intent of the law is to ensure equal access to individuals with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to meet the essential demands of the program.
A student seeking accommodations must self-identify and is responsible for initiating a request in writing to the school’s Section 504 Coordinator as soon as practical. This typically occurs during the first semester of enrollment or following a new diagnosis. The 504 Coordinator will meet with the student to acknowledge the request, gather information, and explain the process. The student will complete the Request for Accommodations, and also submit the Medical Inquiry Form completed by his/her doctor or other medical professional, where appropriate. The 504 Coordinator reviews these documents with the UTHealth EEO Coordinator resulting in the Reasonable Accommodations Response Form. Once received by the student, it is up to him/her to share this information with faculty and instructors well in advance of requesting accommodations in any classes. This information remains confidential, and not part of a student’s academic record.
A student should not request accommodations directly from a faculty member. If that occurs, the faculty member should refer the student to the school’s Section 504 Coordinator and/or this policy. Faculty should not be routinely granting extra time or other accommodations to students that may claim they have a disability, rather documentation is required.
The GSBS has two Section 504 Coordinators:
Dr. Natalie Sirisaengtaksin, academic accommodations (Natalie.Sirisaengtaksin@uth.tmc.edu; 713-500-9870);
Cheryl Spitzenberger, facilities-related accommodations (Cheryl.A.Spitzenberger@uth.tmc.edu; 713-500-9875).
It is recommended that the following statement be added to all syllabi:
If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Section 504 Coordinator.
Please see the Handbook of Operating Procedures (HOOP) for further information about the policy as well as links to the application and certification forms:
HOOP Policy 101
Disability Accommodations and Forms