A Student Who is Quadriplegic
Disability description and career possibilities:
This student has no voluntary movement of his legs due to a spinal cord injury. In
addition, he has partial use of his arms, hands, and fingers; making manual keyboarding
and writing fairly slow. He uses a power wheelchair for mobility, and independently
drives a lift-equipped van. Many such individuals routinely attain college degrees
and work as accountants, computer programmers, psychologists, business owners, etc.
Basic access needs for classrooms and lab:
This student may need someone to open the door for him. He may also need to utilize
a small table for note taking or to place materials on. This can be ordered from the
Maintenance Department. In some cases, an aide supplied by the LAP or by the student
may be necessary to assist the student in managing his materials.
Very often, an alternative to conventional note taking methods may be necessary:
- A classmate may need to be located who will be willing to share notes.
- The instructor may be willing to make a copy of his/her lecture notes.
- A tape recorder may be used to record the lecture.
It is likely that the student's problems with writing will make it necessary for him
to take tests outside the classroom, with assistance and with additional time allowed.
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, etc. can be used by the student. In this student's
case, the following may occur:
- In our facility, under continuous supervision, the student may write his own test.
- Under the same conditions, the student may dictate his answers to an LAP staff member
or student worker who will write his answers.
The Learning Assistance Program's Computer and Assistive Technology Lab have resources
that can assist this student. Dictation programs, alternative keyboards, trackballs,
or other input devices can help him develop technology skills that will enhance his
independence as a student and a future employee. Our faculty and staff in the lab
evaluate students' needs and assist them in acquiring the needed skills.
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Cal Poly SLO, Aerospace Engineering
I excelled in math and science in school, so engineering was the right fit and I just had to figure out how to get it done. Throughout high school, I took courses at Allan Hancock College (AHC), and graduated as my high school valedictorian. I then attended AHC in search of a smooth transition to a university. I was able to take my lower division engineering courses and form a great relationship with my professors. While at AHC, I received multiple scholarships form the Allan Hancock Foundation, Santa Barbara Foundation, and MESA-NSF Scholarship. I then attended California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, to pursue an aerospace engineering degree. After just one year at Cal Poly, I was accepted into one of the most prestigious internship programs that NASA offers, the Aeronautics Academy.
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