Skip to main content
COVID-19 Support Get Urgent Help


Most students will encounter some form of health issue during their time as a student. While we hope these occurrences are minor, there are sure to be situations involving students who are sick, injured, or dealing with significant medical or mental health challenges that disrupt their academic pursuits. Should you encounter these kinds of issues, we can help.

Whether you are dealing with a long-term illness, an injury that leaves you permanently or temporarily disabled, or some other issue, you are encouraged to contact us with questions and concerns about how this may impact your status at the university. We will work to connect you with other resources, advise you on how to manage your condition in relation to school, and offer whatever support we can provide. Our goal is to ensure that you effectively balance your own health and well-being with the academic demands of Penn State.

Short & Long Term Disability Accommodations

Student Disability Resources provides reasonable accommodations and services to students with disabilities who are enrolled at University Park. Students needing to request reasonable accommodations for an ongoing disability should contact Student Disability Resources to schedule an intake appointment with a disability specialist. Student Disability Resources may be able to assist with temporary accommodations.  Students should contact that office to discuss individualized need.  A student may also choose to work directly with professors to discuss their needs related to a short-term injury or illness.

Faculty Notification

It is common for Student Care & Advocacy to receive notice from hospitals, residence hall staff, parents, friends, etc. that a student is sick, injured, or dealing with a crisis or emergency. In instances when the student cannot notify their faculty of associated class absences, we send a general notification to the student's instructors to inform them of the student's missed class and expected return date, if known. We are happy to serve as a liaison until it's reasonable for the student to resume his or her studies.

This notification is sent as a courtesy notification that the student's circumstances are such that it may warrant a valid absence from class. Any academic accommodations or arrangements to make up missed work must be agreed upon between the student and faculty member.

Releases of Information

When a student is admitted to a local hospital, the student is invited to sign a release of information which allows the hospital to notify Student Care & Advocacy of the student's status and gather assistance in advocating on the student's behalf, including but not limited to faculty notification & post-hospitalization follow up meetings.

Student Care & Advocacy works closely with Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS) to provide students with the support they need, especially when they are managing the academic impact of mental health emergencies or related issues. Many students choose to sign an information release with their counselor so that Student Care & Advocacy can stay informed of their progress and know how best to help. Because mental health issues can cause a great disruption to academic, social, and general well-being, we urge students to utilize the services offered on campus.

Personal Support

Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS) addresses the psychological needs and personal concerns of students that may interfere with their academic progress, social development, and emotional well-being by offering a variety of services including but not limited to individual and group counseling.

The Gender Equity Center supports students who have been impacted by sexual violence, relationship violence, stalking, harassment, and other campus climate issues. Staff provide education, advocacy, referrals, and crisis intervention/support counseling.

The Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity provides education, information, and advocacy services.

The Paul Robeson Cultural Center provides programs and services that encourage the appreciation of the diverse perspectives, experiences, and cultures of many under-represented communities that comprise the population of the University community.

The Multicultural Resource Center provides individual counseling and education services for undergraduate multicultural students and assists students in meeting the challenges associated with education and attaining a degree at a major research institution.

The Collegiate Recovery Community helps students in recovery from alcohol and other addictions.

The Center for Spiritual & Ethical Development offers a welcoming, safe, inclusive environment for the Penn State community to explore a multitude of faith traditions in a compassionate, open-minded setting. The center aims to promote an environment that stretches beyond tolerance to a genuine appreciation of and respect for religious and spiritual diversity.