SAS Departments

Career Exploration Studies

Career Exploration Studies offers students the opportunity to do an intensive career search while they develop a better understanding of themselves through career and personal counseling and the sampling of various majors. A counselor/academic advisor will work with each student to assist them in evaluating information and making a career decision. Students may remain in the Career Exploration program for up to two semesters to select and prepare for a major. During that time, students will take introductory and foundation courses in various majors as well as courses in mathematics, humanities and social science.

Kiersten Blankley

Contact: Kiersten Blankley
Office: LBJ 2591
Videophone: 585-270-7306
Phone: 585-475-5285

Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Athletes at RIT

Students who are deaf and hard-of-hearing participate with hearing students in sports, recreation and wellness programs. Support services and training for deaf and hard-of-hearing RIT student-athletes competing at the varsity level are provided through the RIT/NTID Athlete Development Program. The program provides a wide range of services, covering academic support, educational workshops, personal mentoring, leadership development and more.

Skip Flanagan

Contact: Skip Flanagan

First-Year Experiences

As part of First-Year Experiences, entering deaf and hard-of-hearing students who are enrolled in programs in the College of NTID are required to take Freshman Seminar, a non-credit course that provides students with opportunities to develop/enhance academic skills, personal awareness and community involvement in order to maximize their college experience. Students have opportunities to explore and navigate the college environment, develop/reinforce academic skills and participate in service learning opportunities.

Students are encouraged to establish meaningful connections with faculty, staff and peers. The course promotes the development of plans for ongoing growth and involvement in class and in the RIT/NTID and/or broader community.

Kiersten Blankley

Contact: Kiersten Blankley
Office: LBJ 2591
Videophone: 585-270-7306
Phone: 585-475-5285

Counseling & Academic Advising Services

Counseling & Academic Advising Services: NTID counselors/academic advisors provide personal, social, career and academic counseling services to all deaf and hard-of-hearing students at RIT. Every RIT/NTID student has a counselor/academic advisor assigned to work with them.

NTID Office of Student Financial Services

The NTID Office of Student Financial Services plays a unique role with financial matters in assisting deaf and hard-of-hearing students as well as students enrolled in the ASL-English interpretation program and Master of Science program in secondary education of students who are deaf or hard of hearing..

Here are some of the main services we provide:

  • Select recipients for NTID private and/or endowed scholarships
  • Help students with eServices questions – this portal is for enrolled students, which provides individualized academic, billing, and financial aid information.
  • Direct students to the appropriate departments/programs for problem resolution as necessary.

Contact the Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships (OFAS) for assistance on these topics:

  • How to apply for financial aid programs
  • Identifying sources of financial aid to help meet the cost of attendance
  • How financial aid eligibility is determined
  • Requirements for financial aid programs

The OFAS is responsible for awarding as well as administration of all need-based federal, state and institutional aid (i.e. grants, loans and work-programs). The OFAS has dedicated staff members with experience in every aspect of financial aid administration and who are specifically designated for deaf and hard-of-hearing students as well as students enrolled in the ASL-English interpretation program and Master of Science program in secondary education of students who are deaf or hard of hearing.

Alicia Johnson The primary contact for students is:
Alicia Johnson, Assistant Director
Office of Financial Aid and Scholarships
Contact OFAS

Barb Polle

Contact: Barb Polle
Office: LBJ-2620
Videophone: 585-286-5516
Phone: 585-475-6863

NTID Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Services

The NTID Office of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VR Services) has an active role in assisting deaf and hard-of-hearing students with VR policies, consultations, and building relationships with VR agencies throughout the country.

Some of the resources that the Office of VR Services provides are:

  • Managing VR support for the education of students who are deaf or hard-of-hearing
  • Outreach to admitted and continuing students regarding how to seek and maintain VR benefits
  • Resolution of VR questions or concerns
  • Provision of workshops and one-on-one consultations for RIT/NTID students on understanding their rights and responsibilities regarding VR and other pertinent topics

Contact the NTID Office of VR Services for assistance on these topics:

  • How to apply for VR support services
  • How VR support is determined
  • Requirements for maintaining VR support

Denise Hampton

Contact: Denise Hampton
Office: LBJ 2620
Videophone: 585-286-4525
Phone: 585-475-2582

RIT Counseling & Psychological Services

RIT Counseling and Psychological Services (CaPS) provides confidential and personalized services to meet the mental health needs of currently enrolled undergraduate and graduate deaf, hard-of- hearing and hearing students. The CaPS office is located on the second floor of the RIT August Center building (above the Student Health Center). Our mission is to enhance the deaf, hard-of -hearing and hearing student potential for learning and success and to promote the emotional health and well-being of the campus community through the delivery of responsive, empirically-based and culturally competent mental health services.

Our caring team of licensed mental health professionals offer primarily individual psychotherapy, but also group counseling, crisis intervention and referrals to outside resources to help students change and thrive as they navigate the daily challenges of college life. Mental health therapists Susan Chapel and Gloria Farr are both fluent in American Sign Language.

CaPS uses a short-term, time-limited therapy model to assist students who are experiencing concerns and needs that are interfering with their ability to be successful in school and/or with their individual personal growth, functioning and adjustment. The overall objective is not to uncover and address every issue a student may have faced in his/her life or to provide continual maintenance for chronic psychiatric disorders. Rather, our objective is to facilitate adaptation, adjustment and resilient functioning in order to enable the student to continue enrollment in college and to pursue academic, career and personal success with minimal disruption or delay.

Students can contact the CaPS office either by email,, or as a walk-in (August Center building, second floor).

Susan Chapel

Contact: Susan Chapel
Phone: 585-475-5709

Gloria Farr

Contact: Gloria Farr
Phone: 585-270-7280

Student Conduct

The mission of the Student Behavior Consultation Team (SBCT) is to coordinate the resources of RIT to address inappropriate, disruptive or harmful student behavior in order to recommend collaborative and purposeful (and non-punitive) interventions aimed at helping students achieve success. 

In addition, the SBCT assists faculty and staff in addressing instances of student behavior that may be inappropriate, harmful, or disruptive for the RIT living and learning community.

Kiersten Blankley

Contact: Kiersten Blankley
Office: LBJ 2591
Videophone: 585-270-7306
Phone: 585-475-5285

Student Life Team

The Student Life Team (SLT) challenges and educates all deaf and hard-of-hearing students, providing resources and support for their successful transition throughout college and after graduation.

SLT’s collaborations with the NTID Counseling and Academic Advising Services Department, NTID Center on Employment, NTID Student and Academic Services, RIT Department of Public Safety and several offices across RIT’s Division of Student Affairs ensure that students are provided diverse opportunities to optimize their collegiate experiences.

SLT’s co-curricular and late-night educational programming, spiritual/religious and civility exploration workshops, self-advocacy and community accountability mentoring programs, social and cultural programs, fraternity and sorority event collaborations, and club/organization advising are avenues of outreaching and networking with deaf and hard-of-hearing students.

SLT values its ongoing partnership with RIT/NTID alumni to offer every student a greater sense of his/her purpose as a global citizen.

Tim Albert

Contact: Tim Albert
Office: SDC 1213
Videophone: 585-286-2272

Substance and Addiction Intervention Services for the Deaf

Substance and Addiction Intervention Services for the Deaf (SAISD) provides alcohol, tobacco and other drug (ATOD) information/referral, prevention/education, intervention, cross-disability professional consultation and training and support to treatment services. The target population served includes the deaf and hard-of-hearing student population at RIT/NTID and the deaf and hard-of-hearing community in Monroe County and its 15 surrounding counties in upstate New York.

SAISD interfaces with almost all NTID departments, most notably the Student Life Team, First Year Experiences, Judicial Affairs and Career Counseling. Additional collaboration happens with RIT’s Division of Student Affairs, including Center for Campus Life, Center for Campus Ministries, Center for Intercollegiate Athletics, Center for Physical Education and Recreation, Center for Residence Life and the Student Health Center. In addition, SAISD interfaces with RIT College of Liberal Arts and with RIT Campus Safety.

SAISD provides short-term needs assessment to the deaf and hard-of-hearing community and to the students at RIT/NTID, coordinates referrals to appropriate services and presents workshops and training to the professional community related to substance abuse and deafness. Some of the college activities include working with the Summer Vestibule Program and Freshman Seminar classes as well as dormitory programs by conducting presentations on the dangers of experimenting with mind-altering substances. SAISD counselors have implemented BASICS, an evidence-based practice for those students who have received a judicial sanction related to alcohol or other drugs.  Educating our student population by providing drug and alcohol information and intervention when indicated proves to be an effective substance abuse prevention strategy.  We provide information on deafness and substance abuse to agencies, nationwide. Our website provides these agencies with useful tips and information related to counseling the deaf and hard of hearing. 

Keven Poore

Contact Keven Poore
Office: August Center (23A) Rm. 2180
Videophone: 585-563-9260

Summer Vestibule Program

SVP is a two-week orientation program for incoming deaf and hard-of-hearing students accepted into a program within the College of NTID. The SVP program consists of career seminar classes, a series of placement testing, general/intensive career sampling and educational/social programming efforts. During SVP, students are introduced to RIT/NTID facilities, policies and student life opportunities, so that they will be well prepared when classes start.

Amy Stornello

Contact: Amy Stornello
Office: LBJ 2647
Videophone: 585-391-9990

Title IX Deputy Coordinator

The Title IX deputy coordinator provides training to faculty, staff and students regarding their rights and responsibilities under Title IX. The deputy coordinator also works with various people on and off campus to engage the campus community in strategic efforts aimed at the prevention of sexual violence and other forms of sex- and/or gender-based discrimination as well as partner with other deputies to support the Title IX coordinator.

In addition, the deputy coordinator provides guidance and assistance to alleged complainants of sexual violence and sex/gender discrimination, including referral to support resources, notice of right to file internal complaints, and notice of the right to report incidents to law enforcement. The deputy coordinator also assists in the development and dissemination of educational materials, including brochures, posters and web-based materials that inform members of the campus community of Title IX responsibilities and resources both on and off campus.

The deputy coordinator also reviews and ensures that university policies, procedures, protocols and practices are in compliance with Title IX regulations as well as being abreast of regulations and statutes relating to gender-based violence, including, but not limited to, Title IX and VAWA (Violence Against Women Act).

Amy Stornello

Contact: Amy Stornello
Office: LBJ 2647
Videophone: 585-391-9990