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Guide to the Disabled Students' Program Records, 1965-
CU-479  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Administrative Information
  • Organizational Chronology
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: Disabled Students' Program Records,
    Date (inclusive): 1965
    Collection Number: CU-479
    Creator: University of California, Berkeley. Disabled Students' Program
    Extent: 8 cartons 10 linear feet 5 digital objects
    Repository: The Bancroft Library
    Berkeley, California 94720-6000
    Abstract: The Disabled Students' Program Records, 1965-[on going], consist of materials created or collected by the leaders and administrators of the Disabled Students' Program at the University of California, Berkeley. The collection consists of records of the administration, services, and Susan O'Hara papers. Administrative materials include correspondence, funding information, reports, newsletters, events, and press clippings. Services materials document the residence program, attendant service, wheelchair repair, employment information, blind services, and deaf services. Susan O'Hara's papers contain records from her tenure as the first coordinator for the DSP residence program and as the director of DSP.
    Languages Represented: English

    Information for Researchers

    Access

    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has been assigned to The Bancroft Library. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the appropriate curator or the Head of Public Services for forwarding. Permission for publication is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and the copyright.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Disabled Students' Program Records, CU-479, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Related Collections and Oral Histories

    Disabled Students' Program photograph collection [graphic]. UARCH PIC 1994.047--PIC. The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.
    Susan O'Hara, "Director of the UC Berkeley Disabled Students' Program, 1988-1992, Coordinator of the Residence Program, 1975-1988, and Community Historian," an oral history conducted in 1997 by David Landes, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 2000.
    BANC MSS 2001/36 c
    Zona Roberts, "Counselor for Physically Disabled Students' Program, Mother to Ed Roberts," an oral history conducted in 1994-1995 by Susan O'Hara, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 2000.
    BANC MSS 2001/38 c
    University of California's Cowell Hospital Residence Program for Physically Disabled Students, 1962-1975: Catalyst for Berkeley's Independent Living Movement, an oral history conducted in 1994, 1996, and 1998-1999, Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 2000. BANC MSS 2001/43 c

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    O'Hara, Susan, 1938---Archives.
    California. Dept. of Rehabilitation.
    University of California, Berkeley. Disabled Students' Program--Archives.
    People with disabilities--Education (Higher)--United States.
    People with disabilities--Services for--California.
    College students with disabilities--California--Berkeley.
    Barrier-free design for students with disabilities.
    Dwellings--Access.
    Students with disabilities.
    Students with disabilities--Transportation.
    O'Hara, Susan, 1938-
    Online Archive of California.
    Disability Rights and Independent Living Movement collection.

    Administrative Information

    Acquisition Information

    The Disabled Students' Program Records were transferred to the University Archives in increments beginning in 1993.

    Organizational Chronology

    1956 The Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Student Health Services Program is set up for the physically disabled at the University of California, Berkeley.
      Edward V. Roberts, the first student with a severe mobility impairment to live on campus moves into Cowell Memorial Hospital and begins his studies.
    1963 Following Roberts's successful first year, the University admits John Hessler, the second student with a severe mobility impairment to live at Cowell Hospital.
    1967 Seven severely physically disabled students are living in Cowell Hospital as of October.
      Carl J. Ross, Cowell Hospital administrator, proposes a program to serve ten to twelve disabled students.
    1968 The Cowell Residence Program is funded by the California Dept. of Rehabilitation (DR).
      Roberts becomes a part-time assistant on disability to the Dean of Students.
    1969 Conflicts with the DR staff become the impetus for the organization of a student self- advocacy group for those living in Cowell Hospital, named the Rolling Quads.
      The Rolling Quads write a proposal for a grant from the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) for the fiscal year 1970-1971, to fund a physically disabled Students' program.
      Students who lived at Cowell begin to move into their own apartments off campus. The Rolling Quads propose a community halfway house residence program for students attending UC Berkeley. [The "halfway house" was never established.]
    1970 In the spring quarter, the Associated Students of the University of California (ASUC) at Berkeley vote to supplement HEW funding for a program for students with disabilities, with a fee of 25 cents to be paid by every student at UC Berkeley for each academic quarter, as part of registration. The money is made available in June 1970.
      HEW grants $81,000 to start the Physically Disabled Students' Program (PDSP) in July. Hessler, Michael Fuss, Chuck Grimes, and Zona Roberts (Ed Roberts' mother) set up the first office in an apartment at 2532 Durant Avenue in Berkeley.
      John Hessler is the first director. Initially, PDSP serves 17 clients.
    1972 The Center for Independent Living (CIL) is incorporated off campus. CIL is a Berkeley community service agency for persons with disabilities, modeled on PDSP.
    1973 The Disabled Students' Union is formed.
    1974 A job development specialist position is proposed for disabled students and alumni.
      The Coordinating Committee for the Removal of Architectural Barriers (CCRAB) is established to resolve access problems on the UC Berkeley campus.
      A dormitory residence pilot program is set up for students with disabilities. Initially it has 5 rooms in Putnam Hall in the Unit One of the student dormitory complex.
    1975 Susan O'Hara begins as head of the PDSP Residence Program (serves until 1988). The residence pilot program is successful. The permanent PDSP Residence Program consists of 16 rooms in the Unit Two dorm complex staffed 24 hours a day by paid attendants. The Cowell Hospital Residence Program is closed.
      California Governor Jerry Brown appoints Ed Roberts Director of the California Department of Rehabilitation. John Hessler leaves the directorship of PDSP to become Deputy Director of the California Department of Rehabilitation. Don Lorence assumes the directorship of PDSP.
      DR funds a Job Placement Specialist at the University Career Planning Office. Betty Bacon is the first specialist.
    1977 Zona Roberts resigns from DSP.
    1978 PDSP establishes Deaf Services.
      After a program audit of DSP led by UC Berkeley professor William K. (Sandy) Muir, the University establishes the Chancellor's Physically Disabled Students' Program Advisory Board, which consists of the combination of the old Residence Hall Advisory Board and the Disabled Students Advisory Board.
    1979 Don Lorence leaves the directorship of PDSP. Sharon Bonney is hired as the new director.
      PDSP moves to 2515 Channing Way. It now serves 254 students.
    1982 PDSP changes its name to the Disabled Students' Program (DSP) to include students with learning disabilities.
    1987 Sharon Bonney leaves the directorship of DSP.
      A twenty-fifth anniversary survey shows 157 former residents of the program have an average salary of $32,224 in a variety of career fields.
    1988 Susan O'Hara, the Residence Program director, becomes director of DSP. Bill Blanchard takes over as Residence Program director.
      Stephen Hawking, world renowned physicist with Lou Gehrig's disease (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; ALS), visits the UC Berkeley campus. DSP hosts a barbeque in his honor.
    1990 DSP moves from Channing Way to the Cesar Chavez Student Center on campus.
    1992 Thirty years after Ed Roberts moves into Cowell Memorial Hospital, DSP serves 800 disabled students at UC Berkeley.
      Susan O'Hara retires as director. Lynn Bailiff becomes the director.
    1997 Lynn Bailiff retires. Ed Rodgers is hired as the new director.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Disabled Students' Program Records, 1965-[on-going], consist of materials created or collected by the leaders and administrators of the Disabled Students' Program (DSP) at the University of California, Berkeley. The collection consists of records of the administration, services, and Susan O'Hara papers. Administrative materials include correspondence, funding information, reports, newsletters, events, and press clippings. Services materials document the residence program, attendant service, wheelchair repair, employment information, blind services, and deaf services. Susan O'Hara's papers contain records from her tenure as the first coordinator for the DSP residence program and as the director of DSP.
    DSP began with the activism of a group of disabled students known as the Rolling Quads, who together with the UC administration created the first comprehensive service group for disabled students. The collection documents DSP's development from a few severely disabled students in the late-1960's to a large organization serving hundreds of students with a variety of disabilities today. The program helps disabled students transition from home to independent living, incorporating services and peer counseling with academics. DSP's innovative blend of advocacy and services became a model for other student and community self-help programs around the world.
    The bulk of the material documents DSP administration and the services offered to disabled students. The administration records contain background information, correspondence, and grant proposals to the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW) which later became the Office of Education, the California Dept. of Rehabilitation, and University of California (UC). These records chart the development of DSP from a grassroots organization to a full-fledged UC student program. The UC grant and budget records include Associated Students funding and applications for individual one-time DSP grants to students. Also of interest are the staff and advisory board meeting agendas, reports on disability rights, legislation, accessibility compliance, and conferences, newsletters, brochures, guides, event information, DSP's office facilities renovations, and press clippings showing DSP's use of media coverage.
    Information on DSP services includes material on the residence program, first housed in Cowell hospital, later in accessible dormitories. The residence program, along with the attendant referral service, exemplifies the tenets of the movement for independent living. DSP services acted as the impetus for the Center for Independent Living (CIL), which expanded similar services into the Berkeley community. CIL became a national model for a community-based organization for people with disabilities, directed by people with disabilities. DSP records document the wheelchair repair shop, University and public transportation, job development programs, deaf services, blind services, and University library services, showing DSP's efforts to aid students with disabilities.
    Susan O'Hara's papers document her tenure as coordinator for the residence program (1975-1988) and as director of DSP (1988-1992). The notes, calendars, and documentation on the oral history project show O'Hara's dedication to the program, and the individual files she created on DSP staff and alumni include information on many disability rights leaders.
    The early records of the DSP organization shed light on its origin and growth, while information on the residence program is valuable as an example of the principles of the independent living movement. Alumni became active in the disability rights and independent living movements after their experiences with DSP, helping to found CIL. The DSP records trace the transformation of a grass-roots movement to a UC agency, and indicate the growth of its influence in the founding of CIL and similar organizations.