LAC-DS becomes the Center for Learning, Access, and Student Success (CLASS)

Banner graphic that says "CLASS: Center for Learning, Access, and Student Success" and "The LAC-DS is now CLASS. New name, same services."Wake Forest’s Learning Assistance Center and Disability Services (LAC-DS) has announced several updates to its office and practices as it marks its 35th year serving the campus community. The LAC-DS will reintroduce itself this semester under a new name: the Center for Learning, Access, and Student Success (CLASS). The new name will more accurately represent the mission and strength-based approach of the office, which encourages students to tap into self-determination and resilience when faced with adversity

Although the pandemic posed many challenges, it also inspired the CLASS office to assess its services and the campus’s evolving needs to strengthen its commitment to “providing opportunities for all students to achieve academic success.” CLASS will continue to offer high-quality disability services, academic and learning resources and peer mentoring, supported by a variety of departmental initiatives, including the production of alternative media, academic coaching and peer tutoring.

CLASS will continue to offer services via channels established or expanded during the pandemic, including ongoing access to online resources like digital accommodation letters, tutoring and course materials. The office looks forward to partnering with Wake Forest Student Government to co-host an Academic Resources Awareness Week, from November 1 through 5. The week of celebration and engagement was established last spring, in collaboration with the Office of Academic Advising, Z. Smith Reynolds Library and subject-specific help centers, including the Math and Stats, Writing, Computer Science and Speaking Centers.

“We are all very excited about our new name, and we believe that the Center for Learning, Access, and Student Success more accurately reflects our commitment to providing access and opportunities for academic success,” said CLASS Director Michael Shuman. “We will continue sharing strategies that we know are associated with success in the classroom, and our expanded services will only enhance these learning opportunities and facilitate even more academic engagement.”

The office will pursue several new initiatives, including a WFU student and faculty pilot of text to speech software. CLASS has also launched a student mentoring program, called “Deacs Like Me,” for middle school students with learning disabilities. The program will both support members of the Winston-Salem community and reinforce Wake Forest students’ academic and mentoring skills.

“We are committed to a collaborative and comprehensive approach to helping students become academically successful, however they choose to define it,” said Shuman.

The CLASS office will host an Open House CLASS Launch celebration on Oct. 1, from 3 to 5 p.m. in Reynolda Hall, Room 118. CLASS staff will contact academic and administrative departments to assist with updates to promotional materials, syllabi and website content referencing the office and its services.

Visit the CLASS website to learn more about the department and its services.