About the Office

About the Office

Reasons to Connect with the Disability Resource Center


Begin the Process for Accommodations 

STEP 1 is to Complete the New Student Application found on our homepage

This applies to all students new to the Disability Resource Center, whether you're currently enrolled at UWRF or choosing UWRF as your college in the near future. If you've had accommodations in the past or you were recently diagnosed with a disability which may impact you as a student, you're encouraged to connect with the DRC to determine if you're eligible to receive accommodations. Video: How to Complete Your New Student Application

New Diagnosis and you already have accommodations at UWRF? 

Email us at to determine if an adjustment in accommodation is needed. Or you may request an appointment through the DRC CONNECT.

Review How to Use and Request Approved Accommodation 

This is geared to returning students who have used approved accommodations during a previous semester at UWRF. First step every semester is to request your faculty notification letters in DRC CONNECT. This should be done within the first few weeks of the semester!  If you have questions regarding the most efficient way to use your accommodations, schedule an appointment with your advisor or stop by the office.

General inquires or 715-425-0740

The mission of the Disability Resource Center at UW-River Falls is to arrange opportunity for students with disabilities to have equal access in the way of academic accommodations, while inclusively being involved in the campus community and culture.

We believe our community is enriched by diversity and we direct our focus by furthering the education, understanding, and advancement of students with disabilities. We commit to fostering an inclusive campus environment for all students, demolishing the stigma attached to the word disability. We empower students to effectively communicate their needs, strengths, and barriers in order to provide equal opportunities in the classroom and other university-sponsored programs. We welcome advocacy allies among campus peers, faculty and staff. The Disability Resource Center encourages suggestions to further establish a culture of understanding and awareness in relation to the disability population served on our campus.

The DRC is driven to provide learning outcomes that represent the needs of the students we serve. Our goals are to Foster Independence in students, Reduce Barriers in the academic environment, and Promote Inclusion on campus and in the community.

We are committed to the following core elements of the Social Justice Model:

  1. A focus on the ways power and privilege shape the lives of students who have disabilities and those without disabilities in higher education.
  2. An explicit recognition of the dangers of presuming that typical ways of doing, being, learning, teaching, thinking, feeling, moving, and communication are preferable and encouragement of a diversity of approaches that support success of all individuals. 
  3. Attention to and acceptance of the diversity in experience within the disability communities, in terms of intersecting social identities and the multiple ways in which particular forms for disability are experienced, both between people and over the course of a given individual's experience or impairment.
  4. Acceptance that all people are interdependent and rejection of independence as a desired outcome.
  5. Attention to the impacts of people's physical bodies and minds on the experience of disability, in addition to and in interaction with the environment (i.e. social, cultural, and economic). 
  6. Recognition that a social justice approach to disability in higher education must attend to the influence of disability and ableism not just on students, but also on staff and faculty. 
  7. Advocacy for inclusion and equity in access to and within all higher education settings. 

An accommodation is typically an adjustment in the way things are done, not an adjustment in the curriculum. An accommodation could be a different way to receive important information for a course, such as using an audio textbook in conjunction with the hardcopy. It could also be a different way to do important things such as having additional time to take tests.

We empower students by helping them build their self-awareness and self-advocacy skills to effectively communicate their needs, strengths, learning style and barriers.


We arrange reasonable academic accommodations to best ensure that students can maximize the use of their inherent ability by providing them the supports required for their educational learning and academic opportunities.

We provide initiatives to help establish a culture of understanding and awareness in relation to the disability populations served on the UWRF campus. We advocate for accessibility in the learning environment and educating the larger campus community on disability issues.  

Shaping the Core Values of Individuals and Community

The Disability Resource Center is committed to support the individual needs of students with disabilities and work collaboratively to provide an environment, culture, and community that honors individual differences. These core values are shaped by participating in campus collaboration, engaging in community partnerships, and providing opportunities for outreach and education.

The Disability Resource Center values collaboration.  It is an essential function of honoring equal access and opportunity to students with disabilities. We work to establish positive working relationships between faculty and the students we serve. Outside of collaborating with faculty, we are devoted to promoting disability diversity on our campus and providing education, outreach, and awareness regarding the needs of our students. We achieve this by collaborating closely with the following campus partners: Student Health and Counseling, TRIO/SSS, Residence Life, Admissions, Parking, Facilities, Textbook Services, Registrars, Speech and Hearing Clinic, Dinning Services, Division of Technology Services, Student Conduct and Community Standards, Disability Advisory Committee, Medical Emergency Withdrawal Committee, Autism Transition Program Committee, Commencement Committee, Week of Welcome Committee, and the Campus Climate Sexual Assault Assessment Committee.

We are committed to promoting professional development and continuing education opportunities for faculty and staff to learn best practices in effectively servicing the needs of students with disabilities in the classroom, campus departments, residence halls, and the larger campus community. Providing outreach and establishing a greater understanding of disability culture on our campus is a vital aspect our of office’s vision and mission.

The Disability Resource Center is dedicated to connecting with local school districts to aid in educating students, parents, and high school staff on the expectations and requirements for receiving academic accommodations in Higher Education. Education sessions and informational panels are platforms used to promote outreach about services and supports while also appropriately preparing prospective students for the transition from high school to college. Developing community partnerships, and understanding community resources is vital to establishing a sustainable long-term culture and vision that encompasses all of the factors prospective students with disabilities take into consideration when making their decision about what university to select. The DRC strives to provide supports during each student’s educational journey by collaborating with community providers to offer comprehensive supports which best service the complex needs of each individual student.

Disability is part of diversity. We want students to recognize that disability should be celebrated and accepted. Take the time to learn more about disability culture and the empowered voices and perspectives of disabled activists, media makers, advocates, educators, etc., check out our new Disability Culture Resource Guide. The resource includes a collection of blogs, podcasts, websites, and recommended book reads for students to connect with and learn more about disability culture, getting connected to the disability community, and disability identity. We encourage students to learn more about the concept of Disability Identity Development. Our Disability Culture Resource Guide offers some great insight and introductions to learning more about disability identity development.

There are two prevalent ways that we identify with disability in language: person-first and identity-first. Both options have implications for how we think about disability.

Person-first language distances the person from the disability, ostensibly to separate the person from the negative connotations and stigma with which we have all been socialized. As professionals, many of us have been taught that person-first language is preferable, and some disabled individuals choose to identify as a person first, based on their personal orientation to disability. Example: I am a woman with a disability. I am separate from the stereotypes and stigma you associate with disability. 

Identity-first language challenges negative connotations by claiming disability directly. Identity-first language references the variety that exists in how our bodies and brains work with a myriad of conditions that exist, and the role of inaccessible or oppressive systems, structures, or environments in making someone disabled. Example: I am disabled, queer, and Latinx. I have an impairment, and I am disabled by societal barriers.

These language choices underscore the differences between impairment and disability. Impairment is the term used by disability studies scholars to refer to a physiological difference in one’s body or brain. Disability is a lived experience with far-reaching political, social, and economic implications.



Alicia Reinke-Tuthill

Director of the Disability Resource Center and Primary Advisor

Zoe Foster

Access Coordinator and Primary Advisor

Lee Spindler

Accommodations Coordinator


Disability Resource Center

Secure Fax: 715.425.0742
Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
123 Rodli Hall


We can be found at college visit information fairs, new student registration information fairs and sessions, week of welcome sessions, and the counseling services health fair. Our office is between the Admissions and Financial Aid offices. Enter Rodli Hall from East or West doors. 

We are dedicated to advocate for accessibility in the classroom and across campus. We look forward to meeting you!

Equal Access for Students

Fostering Independence, Reducing Barriers, & Promoting Inclusion


Disability Resource Center

Secure Fax: 715.425.0742
Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
123 Rodli Hall