Dining Accommodations

As part of our mission to foster diverse and inclusive learning and living environments, Bates College is committed to supporting students with documented disabilities. As a residential community, Bates prioritizes the residential experience, including dining, as an essential part of our institutional commitment to educating the whole person.

Students who encounter a disability related barrier to their dining experience should submit a dining accommodation request by following the instructions below.

How are Dining Accommodation Requests Reviewed?

Dining accommodation requests are reviewed on an individual basis. It is important to note that students are not making a request for a specific dining arrangement, but rather a request for an accommodation. Based on the type of request, the application may be reviewed by the Housing and Dining Accommodation Review Committee, comprised of representatives from the Office of Accessible Education, Residence Life and Health Education, Health Services, Dining Services, and Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS).

Based on the type of request, other parties may need to be consulted and/or notified, including but not limited to Facilities, Campus Safety, Residence Life, Etc. Students will be notified, in all instances, prior to communication with other departments or individuals.

Please note that Bates College does not grant accommodations solely based on the recommendations of care providers.  The determination is made based on all information relevant to the documented functional limitations caused by the disability in relation to the dining experience.

Deadlines for Requesting a Dining Accommodation

In order to ensure there is ample time to process accommodation requests prior to the start of the semester, it is recommended that students initiate the process before August 1st for the Fall semester and December 1st for the Winter semester.  These dates are meant to be guidelines and not deadlines, as accommodation requests are accepted at any time.

Application Process

Dining accommodation requests generally take three to four weeks to process but may vary depending on the request.

  1. Complete an application: You can do this through the Accessible Information Management Portal (AIM) on our website by clicking here: AIM Portal
  2. Submit the Dining Accommodations Request Form. Please note that in some instances, information or documentation in addition to this form may be required. Learn more about documentation guidelines here.  The request form and subsequent documentation can be uploaded to the AIM portal or can be emailed, faxed, or mailed using the following information:
    Carson Dockum
    Director of Accessible Education
    Bates College
    48 Campus Avenue, Ladd Library G33
    Lewiston, ME 04240
    Fax: 207-786-8290
    Email: accessibility@bates.edu
  3. Schedule an appointment. You will need to schedule a 30 minute initial appointment with Carson Dockum, Director of Accessible Education. Current students may do this through BatesReach. Carson’s office hours will be listed. Incoming students should contact the office by email or phone to schedule an appointment. Phone and Zoom options are available during the summer and for students currently off campus. If you need further assistance feel free to contact us through email at accessibility@bates.edu or call 207-786-6222.
  4. Upon completion of the initial appointment, and after the request and documentation have been reviewed, your application may be reviewed by the Housing and Dining Accommodation Committee. Students will be contacted with one of three notifications. A subsequent meeting may also be required in some instances:
  • Accommodations Approved: If the Housing and Dining Accommodation Committee approves an accommodation, students will then register their accommodations and relevant parties will receive notification of the approved accommodations. For some types of dining accommodations, a subsequent meeting may be required with the student to discuss implementation.
  • Request for More Information: In some instances, more information may be required for the committee to make a determination regarding an accommodation request. In this instance, the student will be notified as to what additional information is required and an additional meeting with Carson may be necessary.
  • Application for Accommodation Not Approved: When the Housing and Dining Accommodation Committee concludes that it cannot approve an accommodation based on the information submitted, the student can have the opportunity to engage in a further dialogue with Carson before a final determination is made.