HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WHLT)- In an effort to better serve and support students, the Office for Disability Accommodations at The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) has changed its name to Student Accessibility Services (SAS).

“We asked our students how they felt about a name change as it was important to us that they be a part of this decision-making process,” said Murphy. “We surveyed the students registered with our office, giving them the opportunity to voice their opinion and vote.”

The students were presented several name-change options and were allowed to write in a suggestion not on the list.

Student Accessibility Services (SAS) is USM’s designated office to verify students’ eligibility for accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). SAS works with eligible registered students on an individual basis to provide classroom and housing accommodations that are specific to their disability.

Currently, USM has approximately 700 students registered with SAS. The office covers disabilities such as ADHD, anxiety, depression, hearing impairments, visual impairments, chronic medical conditions, learning disabilities, mobility impairments, temporary disabilities, and pregnancies under Title IX.

Murphy notes that the name change will better benefit students and the University as SAS works to promote and facilitate access through outreach, training, collaborative partnerships, and proactive solutions across the Hattiesburg and Gulf Park campuses.