Access Services

Access Services best reflects the scope of our work, our mission, and the students we serve. The name Access Services (AS) reflects a nationwide movement away from a medical model of disability, and toward a social model of inclusivity and accessibility for all.  Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota believes that disabilities are a valuable aspect of the diversity of our college community.

We are committed to offering all students the support and accommodations they need to best meet their educational goals.

Access Services is a valuable resource for faculty members, who can refer students for assistance and receive guidance when working with students in their classes.

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota is committed to maintaining an inclusive and accessible environment across all learning platforms.  its programs accessible to all qualified students. Access Services can assist you in providing effective academic accommodations that address your individual learning needs.

In this site, you will find information to access academic accommodations at Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.

As a student with a disability, it is important for you to know Saint Mary’s University prides itself on creating a learning environment responsive to all students, while fully complying with ADA and Section 504 requirements. If you are a student with a disability, please know you have the right to equal access of all programs provided on the Saint Mary’s University campus. However, it is essential you realize college is different from high school in multiple ways.

  1. The student, not the school, initiates the process of getting accommodations through Access Services.
  2. You are responsible for providing documentation of your disability from the appropriate professionals.
  3. Decisions on accommodations are made on an individual basis. Accommodations may vary from class to class, and may be different for individuals with the same disability.
  4. Accommodations must be reviewed and/or renewed at the start of each academic semester. Please make an appointment with the director of Access Services early in the semester.

Support Services for Persons with Disabilities

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota complies with applicable federal, state, and local laws concerning access to educational benefits and programs. For the purposes of this policy, a student with a disability is one who:

  1. Has a physical or mental impairment that materially or substantially limits a major life activity and,
  2. Has a record of such an impairment and,
  3. Is regarded as having such an impairment.

A student with a disability who requests academic assistance may be asked to provide professionally recognized documentation of the disability and the need for services requested. The services provided will be within the legal parameters of “reasonable accommodation.”

Requests to determine eligibility may occur at any time during the student’s career at the university. For students seeking course accommodations, contact Access Services as soon as possible upon admission or as soon as an access issue is identified. Accommodations may take several weeks to arrange and any accommodations granted will not be retroactive.

This time frame allows the university to secure the approved services. The university establishes and maintains curriculum and degree requirements for all students.

Contact Us:

Karen Hemker, M.Ed.

Karen Hemker, M.Ed.

Director of Access Services

Griffin Hall, GRO7ON
Winona Campus

Campus Box: #44






Taylor Zanotti, M.S.Ed.

Taylor Zanotti, M.S.Ed.

Student Success Center & First Generation Initiative - Testing Coordinator/Student Support Specialist

Griffin Hall, GR070A
Winona Campus

Campus Box: # 31


Laura Lanning

Laura Lanning

Access Services Specialist

174 LaSalle Hall
Twin Cities Campus