Thank you for considering the Community College of Rhode Island as you begin your first step in the journey of completing your postsecondary education. We at CCRI understand that entering college can be both an exciting and anxious period in a person's life. College is filled with many challenges and changes that will be very different than your elementary and secondary education experiences but, students can move smoothly and confidently if they are prepared to navigate the college environment. The road ahead will be filled with many challenges but with perseverance, a willingness to put in the time and effort necessary, and knowing which supports are available to students and utilizing them, academic success can be achieved. In college, students are expected to be more independent than in high school and seek out services they need. What this means is that you need to ask for any support services and accommodations, they are not automatically put into place.
During your high schools years, schools were responsible for making sure accommodations and modifications were in place for students with disabilities. Every teacher was required to review your IEP or 504 plan and become familiar with your needs. In college, students are responsible for self-identifying with the Office of Disability Services and establishing an educational plan with a DSS coordinator.
The following pages will give you information that will help guide you through the process of enrollment, identifying with the Office of Disability Services, the differences between high school and college and the expectations that you, as the adult learner, are held to at CCRI. Remember, your disability is a part of you; it does not define who you are. You need to understand your disability, know your strengths as well as your weaknesses, be able to articulate your learning styles and needs to your instructors, and if you are not already; become your own advocate.