Meet the ADA Coordinator

Cishella Durling: Welcome to another episode of the Student Affairs Podcast series. Today I am looking forward to speaking with Sarah Mudd, who is the Title IX and ADA coordinator here at the University of Louisville. So, we're going to kind of dive into the ADA portion and we're going to jump right in. So, Sarah, the first question that I have for you is what is ADA and what is the role of the ADA coordinator here at the University of Louisville?

Sarah Mudd: Well, thanks for having me and ADA stands for the Americans with Disabilities Act, and it requires that colleges and universities provide equal access to post-secondary education for students within the university. It applies to all schools that receive federal funding and all the programs within, the institution. So, it also applies to employment at the university. So, ADA requires that the university designate at least one employee to coordinate these responsibilities. Here at UofL, we have the Disability Resource Center, which facilitates accommodations for disabilities for students, and the Employee Relations Office in HR, which manages accommodations related to employment. And then I serve as the ADA coordinator. So, my role is primarily to manage the grievance procedure if someone feels the university has not provided a reasonable accommodation through these processes. And I also serve as a resource regarding ADA regulations and guidelines for offices on campus when they have questions, I can help them answer those and then serve as an advocate at an administrative level regarding compliance and facilitate their resolution of those concerns.

Cishella Durling: Sounds like they're keeping you busy here at the University of Louisville. You're responsible for a lot of areas, and I think that's super important. So that leads right into my next question of what does the ADA do for students?

Sarah Mudd: ADA provides equal access for students with disabilities to programs and activities at the university. So, make sure that we provide reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities and that can range from accessible classrooms and dorms to assistive technology and support services. These accommodations are done through an interactive process and are usually individualized. The DRC's role, generally with students, is to work on that. It's intended to give students with disabilities a level starting point with their nondisabled peers. While it doesn't guarantee success, it opens access.

Cishella Durling: And that's so important, that access piece, and I know I could go on for days about disability and access as a major studying disability and advocacy here at the University of Louisville. But it's great to know also as a student who has a disability, that there's a department that we can turn to and seek guidance if we feel, you know, that we need to. So, if a student does feel that their rights are being violated under ADA, what steps should they take?

Sarah Mudd: Well, the first step is going to be to make sure that they've followed the process for requesting accommodations, right? So, making sure that they, if they have accommodations for disability, they should contact the Disability Resource Center for assistance and making sure that they have access to the appropriate reasonable accommodation depending on what their needs are. And then it's important to note that accommodations are not retroactive. So, if a student thinks they may benefit from accommodations, they should reach out to the DRC soon as they can. If a student has followed the process, it feels like they've been discriminated against, under ADA, they can reach out to my office.

In some cases, we're able to work with the DRC, or if it's an issue with a faculty member, to ensure the student has the accommodation and other cases students can file a complaint with our office that will lead to, usually leads to, an investigation to where we determine if ADA was violated, if there was discrimination there. Individuals also have the right to file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights through the Department of Education and all this can be found on our website, which is the and then from that home page on the left, there's a resource link and you would select ADA under the resources and there's some resources there, including a link to how to file a grievance.

Cishella Durling: That's fantastic. And you took the words right out of my mouth for that resource link because that is a phenomenal place for students to go and find some of these different departments on campus that are great places for student with disabilities to start. And I think that's important to make sure that that's known that they're available. So, why is it important for students to understand ADA?

Sarah Mudd: Yeah, I think it's important for them to understand ADA, because it promotes inclusivity and ensures equal opportunities for everybody. By understanding ADA Students can advocate for their rights and ensure they have access to the resources they need to succeed academically. And another great thing is that it encourages a more inclusive and diverse campus environment. So, it promotes the idea that everyone, regardless of their abilities, deserves an equal chance to learn, participate, and contribute to the college community. And so, understanding ADA helps students appreciate the value of diversity and fosters a campus of respect and inclusivity.

Cishella Durling: Absolutely. And I'm all for that access and that advocacy for that student population here on campus. And I think it's important them for, I mean really, truly, for everyone to be aware of disability and how we interact with that community and be mindful of how we can support these students so that they can absolutely succeed here at the UofL. I Appreciate all that you do to advocate for students with disabilities, Sarah, I know that you are doing a fantastic job. And on that note; did you all know that there was a list of resources available on the ADA website? And again, Sarah mentioned it earlier, we're going to reiterate that here and it is on the Title IX and ADA Coordinators Office website, which is All right, everyone, thank you so much for stopping by to listen to this podcast with Sarah Mudd, the Title IX and ADA coordinator here at the University of Louisville. Sarah, thank you so much and everyone, y’all have a wonderful day.


Student Affairs

SAC W302

University of Louisville

Louisville, Kentucky 40292

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M-F 8:30am to 5:00 pm

No holiday hours


tel (502) 852-6933

tel (502) 852-5844

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