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Thread: Dr. Young is it true only 12 students in wheelchairs attend Rutgers?

  1. #1

    Dr. Young is it true only 12 students in wheelchairs attend Rutgers?

    I finally managed to get a meeting with 2 faculty/administration personnel from Rutgers this week, involved with the recreation program. They heard what I had to say and where very interested. One of the officials at the meeting was previously involved in adaptive sports at the pre-college level in New Jersey, so he knows there are enough to get a program going. At the meeting he admitted he thought there were only 12 student's out of over 40,000 that are enrolled that use wheelchairs. It got him thinking as to why this is so. This causes more concern than just wheelchair sports. Are those figures anywhere near accurate? I, myself, could not believe that. When I asked him if anyone was working on adaptive sports as a possibility at Rutgers he said no. He said he was never approached before by anyone from the University. Is Rutgers that unaccessible a university that out of over forty thousand students only 12 are in wheelchairs? Seems like a big deficiency that needs to be addressed, even more so than adaptive sports.

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    Isn't that an alarming percentage?

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    BigBob, thanks and sorry but I did not see this. If you have a chance, let's talk about this. This is good that you have met somebody who is concerned. Rutgers is an accessible university. Howevver, when I asked for data, nobody knew. The current VPSA is a good man and I think will listen. Perhaps this is an opportunity. Let's see what we can do to leverage this situation. Wise.

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    Bob, how is it a deficiency? I attended a university of approx 16,000+ students & guess how many students used wheelchairs for full-time mobility the entire time while I was there?

    One.

    There were two other students w/ serious enough mobility impairments that they sometimes used either a w/c or a scooter, but neither were 100% dependent on them to get around.

    Would I say there was a deficiency there? No, how could I? Not enough people had serious physical disabilities? Please; you can't set a quota on that. The campus isn't accessible? It certainly is.

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    Let's see what we can do to leverage this situation. Wise.
    Thanks, But, I can handle it myself
    I rather you be busy in your lab, where you can do the most good.

    The one thing that impressed me is this guy who would be responsible for putting the program together was never contacted by any of the people I contacted. Seems they were more concerned about their risk assessment of not offering a program than looking into the feasibility of one. When I mentioned that they both nodded

    BTW, if Rutgers had an adaptive sports program they could have been invited to attend the Rally for the Cure or even the March on Washington.

    [This message was edited by BigB on 02-25-05 at 08:30 AM.]

  6. #6
    Originally posted by scott pruett:

    Bob, how is it a deficiency? I attended a university of approx 16,000+ students & guess how many students used wheelchairs for full-time mobility the entire time while I was there?

    _One._

    There were two other students w/ serious enough mobility impairments that they sometimes used either a w/c or a scooter, but neither were 100% dependent on them to get around.

    Would I say there was a deficiency there? No, how could I? Not enough people had serious physical disabilities? Please; you can't set a quota on that. The campus isn't accessible? It certainly is.
    well, yes you can set a quota on it, been done for blacks, women, etc.

    but the real concern is, why, outta 16,000 students, there would only be 1 w/c user. that makes no sense.

  7. #7
    Originally posted by cass:

    well, yes you can set a quota on it, been done for blacks, women, etc.

    but the real concern is, why, outta 16,000 students, there would only be 1 w/c user. that makes no sense.
    do you propose the school try to recruit disabled people or something? I don't think this is a comparable statistic to that of ethnic minorities and gender quotas. Our demographic is too broad I think. Also, the thing preventing disabled enrollment is usually based on the individual rather than the institution. i'm interested to know where the opinions lie here. we have 2 people here out of about 4,000 but also before the 2 of us I would venture to say they have probably only had a few among the thousands of students coming through.

  8. #8
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    I attended a large state university with 20,000+ students. I'd say there were around 10 people in chairs during my years there. And the campus was very accessible.

  9. #9
    I attended Hofstra. A pretty friendly gimp school. Just because students use a chair they aren't athlete material.


    There were @ 20 w/c users. Some with very severe limited motor movements. Most were not SCI and were born with some birth issue.

  10. #10
    I think what this points out is that the Universities that aren't pro-active, and shelf any adaptive programs until they are forced into it, have very few students in wheelchairs. By being pro-active the U of Illinois is able to get over 120 high school students just from Illinois alone, to attend a summer camp and eventually attend the University. Even students in wheelchairs that do not participate in any adaptive sports are much more likely to attend a University that has them, as they won't feel so singled out, and that University has shown a desire to welcome them, has more knowledge of the situation, and probably because of the larger number of wheelchair students, would have an expanded DRC(disability Resource Center). My son when in High School was the only student in a wheelchair, and all the faculty was able to do was scratch their heads.
    It was nice when he went to college the University he attends did not have to go through a learning experience of how to deal with his disability, and rather my son learned from their experience.

    [This message was edited by BigB on 02-25-05 at 09:21 AM.]

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