Nica Bastidas

To be honest, I didn’t think I fit under the requirements to receive any accommodations. So i didn’t ask for any specific resources. I just let me professors know that I had hip bursitis and that there would be times when i needed to get up and move around or I might be a little late to class.

Luckily I lived at Heritage Halls during the time when it affected me the most, so I didn’t have to come from off campus. But i also made sure to not have any classes in the RB or in the Tanner building so I didn’t have to walk down and up too many stairs. But even with those accommodations I made myself, sometimes the walks were tough! Any campus is going to be big and require lots of walking.

Another thing that was hard was just feeling judged for getting up in the middle of the discussions. But it was even harder when i got stuck in a middle seat of a row and I didn’t want to climb over everyone in the middle of a discussion so i remained in my seat in pain. It would have been nice if I had a designated seat on the end of the row for when I needed to get up. But I didn’t feel like I was ever given that option because I didn’t really look like I had a physical disability. I didn’t have crutches or a cast or really any other sign that i was always in pain. Some days were harder than others, and it’s not easy to vocalize your problems to complete strangers in your class.

I didn't go to the UAC, I guess you could say it was the stigma. I don’t know. As I would read the disability statements, I honestly thought the UAC was more for those who had a learning disability or just needed extra help from a peer because they can’t take notes or something. I really don’t know. But for some reason I didn’t feel like my case fit the criteria because I was still able to get all my work in on time on my own. It was just those dreadful class discussions when I didn’t arrive on time and had to sit through the pain because of a middle seat. Or I even just skipped some discussions and found the slides online when I was having a hard day. Anyways! It was hard some days, but I still managed to get through the classes. The suggestions I would have is to just make it clear in the disability statements on I-learn (when you’re just starting the classes) and everywhere else that this could also be a place where the professor could know of your invisible mental and health challenges. It would also be kind of cool in the professors could reach out (I know they already have a lot of work) at least at the beginning of the semester. It can be hard to be upfront about what’s going on with you that others can’t see.