Lumbar Disc Herniation
Disability description and career possibilities:
This student has chronic back and leg pain due to a history of lower back injuries.
He is limited to lifting no more than 25 pounds, and he cannot sit, stand, or bend
for a sustained length of time. His back is prone to painful, sometimes incapacitating
spasms at times. The student takes strong pain medication during times of intense
pain. Many such individuals routinely attain university degrees and work at any type
of occupation which does not include heavy lifting, or the need to stay in one position
for a prolonged length of time.
Basic access needs for classrooms and lab:
Often, the LAP will arrange to have a small table placed in the classroom to allow
the student to adjust his seating position more easily. He may also find it necessary
to use some type of seat cushion or lumbar support. Even with these provisions, however,
he may find it necessary to stand for periods of time in the rear of the classroom
to alleviate discomfort. The student should let you know of his back condition, and
of his need to move about in class.
Generally, there should be no problems with the student taking his own notes.
It is possible that the student’s pain level, or occasional use of pain medication,
will negatively affect his level of concentration. This may make it necessary for
him to take lengthy tests outside the classroom. We call this Testing Accommodations.
When such accommodations are appropriate, the student will be given a form to present
to the instructor. This gives the instructor control over how the test will be delivered
to our office, and other details such as whether notes, calculators, or other provisions
can be used by the student.
Generally, no adaptive technology will be necessary for this student. We may, however,
recommend that he obtain a desk and computer station that allows him to stand as well
as sit while doing work.
This student’s condition is not stable. He may experience painful back spasms that
will not allow him to attend school for several days at a time, and his absence rate
may exceed that of his peers. Generally, we will work with the student to inform you
of his absence, and to assist him in keeping up with his assignments until he can
return to the classroom.
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Graduating high school with honors and realizing I did not have the monetary means to go off to a university like I had always dreamed about felt like a setback. Being at a community college, for my first semester, felt like a detriment to my education. Despite this I began to reach out to other students and was referred by a student to a program called MESA. MESA has shaped my educational career. MESA has provided me with opportunities I would have otherwise missed on my own, an opportunity to work with other like-minded majors who have since become like family. With this kind of strong foundation I have been able to excel in my science, mathematics, and engineering courses.
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