Appeals, Disputes, ADA Grievance Procedures

Hartwick College is committed to providing equal access to students with disabilities. The College strives to be an inclusive environment, and complies with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act and Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and 2008 Amendments.

If a student encounters discrimination based on a disability, problems with receiving approved academic adjustments and modifications, or disagrees with a disability-related decision from AccessAbility Services, our Grievance Procedure for students aims to successfully resolve such a concern. Below are both our Informal and Formal Grievance Procedures to process a claim of discrimination based on a disability.

The following grievance procedures are in place to not only resolve student grievances, but to encourage a respectful, open dialogue between faculty, staff, and students.


The College strives to maintain confidentiality for our students with disabilities regarding academic adjustments and grievances to the fullest possible extent, and information is only shared on a “need to know” basis.


Retaliation against a person filing a grievance is prohibited. If a student has experienced retaliation, then he/she/they should report it immediately.

Informal Grievance Procedure

Note: Discussing your concerns and desired outcomes, and reaching a mutually acceptable agreement or resolution, is the goal of this process.

  1. Schedule a meeting with the Director of AccessAbility Services, Lara Sanford, if appropriate (if your grievance is against the Director of AccessAbility Services, then see the Assistant Vice President for Student Success, Tim Ecklund).  Lara Sanford is located in Center for Student Success, Office 10, 5th Floor, Yager Hall,, 607-431-4546.
  2. Schedule a meeting with the individual involved, if appropriate (faculty, staff, 3rd party contractor, student, etc.).
  3. If no resolution is reached as a result of the initial meeting, schedule a meeting with the Department Chair (if your grievance is with a faculty member) or the supervisor (if your grievance is with a staff member).
  4. If no resolution is reached as a result of the second meeting, then schedule a meeting with
    1. the Assistant Dean of Academic Affairs, Cherilyn Lacy, if your grievance is with a faculty member (Academic Affairs, 2nd floor, Bresee Hall, , 607-431-4885)
    2. the College Compliance Officer, Michael Arno, if your grievance is with a staff member. (Shineman Chapel, Office 104;, 607-431-4293)

Formal Grievance Procedure

If the Informal Grievance Procedure does not result in a satisfactory resolution, then a student can choose to file a formal grievance. (Note: students can choose to file a formal grievance without going through the Informal Grievance Procedure). Students are encouraged to speak to the Director of AccessAbility Services throughout the Formal Grievance Procedure, but this is not required.

  1. Write a letter documenting your grievance, including all important information, such as: names, dates and times, description of the concerns, what has been done to resolve the issue thus far, and the student’s contact information. Send this letter to the College Compliance Officer, Michael Arno. (Shineman Chapel, Office 104;, 607-431-4293)
  2. A review of the grievance will be conducted including an investigation, when appropriate.
  3. The grievance will be reviewed, and a formal letter with a decision will be sent to the student within 60 days of submitting the letter.

Filing A Grievance Externally

The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) in the U.S. Department of Education is a law enforcement agency charged with enforcing federal civil rights laws to ensure that educational institutions receiving federal financial assistance do not engage in discriminatory conduct. For more information, visit the Office of Civil Rights webpage:

To file a complaint, use the Office of Civil Rights Discrimination Complaint form: