Thursday, Apr 1, 2021
Dear Rider community,
We have recently heard from students, alumni and others who are calling for increased wheelchair accessibility in our Greek housing.
We agree that accessibility is fundamental to creating a positive and welcoming environment for all of our students. We strive to achieve this not only to comply with applicable law, but also because accessibility speaks to a higher principle of cultivating a community inclusive of all identities.
We ensure equal access and encourage those with specific needs or requests to start with a conversation with staff from Student Accessibility and Support Services (SASS), as well as the completion of a formal accommodation request form. These actions typically initiate the process to address such needs including representation from SASS, Residence Life and Facilities to address individual needs and accommodations. This is a thorough process that can take time.
In the specific advocacy for Phi Sigma Sigma, this process was only just beginning when we learned of a petition that reinforced a false perception that Rider was unwilling to make facilities renovations that would accommodate a person who uses a wheelchair in the building. We are committed to working with all students to understand their unique needs and make accommodations where necessary for them to fully access the Rider student experience.
Rider has strongly embraced this ideal for decades, going back at least to 1976 with the creation of our Disability Services Office (now Student Accessibility and Support Services) and most recently through our Inclusive Excellence Plan.
We proudly support students with disabilities and actively collaborate with them to address their individualized needs.
Leanna Fenneberg, Ph.D.
Vice President for Student Affairs
Vice President for Facilities and University Operations
Director of Student Accessibility and Support Services