All posts tagged: accessibility

Accessibility and You (Yes, You)

Although I am carting many identities with me to grad school—Afro-Latinx, low-income, LGBTQ—my disability is often the first hurdle I face when in a new environment. I posted back in March that applying to schools as a disabled applicant had been extremely stressful. I had a hell of a time finding information on a lot of college websites, let alone the specific program websites. When I contacted some schools, I felt as if they’d never had a disabled student before. Their confused noises when I asked questions about accessibility didn’t give me much confidence. Many current students had no clue about accessibility either. “I’m not disabled so I wouldn’t know anything about all of that,” was the common response. I felt like I was going at it alone, and yet during my application period, I met other disabled applicants. How was it that there were several of us and yet schools still treated us like we had never existed before this application cycle? *** When people ask me about my experiences as a student with limited …

Literal Accessibility

Image: haru__q There are six steps in front of my apartment building. They are made of marble and get slick when it rains or snows. I never forget that they are there. Before my car accident—before I became disabled—I didn’t pay too much attention to such things. Now I am always keenly aware of what lies ahead of me. For someone whose thoughts should revolve around words, I am constantly thinking of numbers; I calculate the distance from A to Z, whether one flight of stairs will be less painful than a thousand steps to the elevator, whether I can afford a cab to go the five blocks because I’m especially achey that day. And, ever since I decided to apply to MFA programs, I’ve thought about learning my way a whole new campus. Iowa’s program is located at Dey House, a two-story former residence converted for use by the Writers’ Workshop. On the Iowa website, it states that disabled students would only have access to the main floor. Columbia’s MFA program is held in …