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Office of Civil Rights & Title IX

Voluntary Self-Identification

The University of South Carolina is committed to equal opportunity and non-discrimination in our educational and employment opportunities in accordance with federal, state, and local laws and regulations.

As an employer that conducts business with the federal government, we are required to implement affirmative action programs. To assist us with our affirmative action programs, we are asking you to self-identify the requested information below. Submission of this information is voluntary and refusal to provide it will not subject you to any adverse treatment. The university treats all individual demographic information as private to the extent allowed by law. The data is available only to a few university employees with a business need-to-know. The information is used by the university to provide summary reports to the federal and state governmental agencies for compliance purposes. The university may use aggregate data to provide information on equal employment opportunity efforts. 

Because a person may become disabled at any time and/or a veteran status may change, we ask all our employees to update their information as their status changes. 


The information obtained will be kept private and will only be used in accordance with the provisions of applicable laws, executive orders, and regulations, including those that require the information to be summarized and reported to the state and federal government for civil rights enforcement.

Importance of self-identifying

The information you provide helps USC measure its progress in attracting, recruiting, employing, and advancing people with disabilities and who are veterans.

We are also required to measure our progress toward having at least 7% of our workforce be individuals with disabilities. To do this, we must ask applicants and employees if they have a disability or have ever had a disability.

We are also required to measure our progress toward having at least 5.4% of our workforce be individuals who are veterans. To do this, we must ask applicants and employees if they are veterans.

The university collects additional demographic data, and efforts are/were made at different times to collect this data. The focus on the August 2023 email is disability and veteran status.

Definition of a disability

You are considered to have a disability if you have a physical or mental impairment or medical condition that substantially limits a major life activity, or if you have a history or record of such an impairment or medical condition. Disabilities could include, but not be limited to, the following:

  • Alcohol or other substance use disorder (not currently using drugs illegally)
  • Autoimmune disorder, for example, lupus, fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis, HIV/AIDS
  • Blind or low vision
  • Cancer (past or present)
  • Cardiovascular or heart disease
  • Celiac disease
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Deaf or serious difficulty hearing
  • Diabetes
  • Disfigurement, for example, disfigurement caused by burns, wounds, accidents, or congenital disorders
  • Epilepsy or other seizure disorder
  • Gastrointestinal disorders, for example,
    Crohn's Disease, irritable bowel syndrome
  • Intellectual or developmental disability
  • Mental health conditions, for example, depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, schizophrenia, PTSD
  • Missing limbs or partially missing limbs
  • Mobility impairment, benefiting from the use of a wheelchair, scooter, walker, leg brace(s) and/or other supports
  • Nervous system condition, for example, migraine headaches, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Neurodivergence, for example, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism spectrum disorder, dyslexia, dyspraxia, other learning disabilities
  • Partial or complete paralysis (any cause)
  • Pulmonary or respiratory conditions, for example, tuberculosis, asthma, emphysema
  • Short stature (dwarfism)
  • Traumatic brain injury

Definition of veteran status

As defined under the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974 (VEVRAA), a veteran is someone who served in active military, was discharged or released under conditions other than dishonorable, and meets one of the four groups: disabled veteran, recently separated veteran, active duty wartime or campaign badge veteran, and Armed Forces service medal veteran.

For more information, visit the Department of Labor's website.  

How to self-identify

To update your disability or veteran status, simply follow the instructions below:

  1. Log into Employee Self Service.
  2. Use Duo Pass when prompted.
  3. Click the “Personal Details” icon box.
  4. Click the “Disability” or “Veteran Status” icon box, respectively.
  5. Answer the questions, as you would like.
  6. Click “Save.”

If you need assistance accessing and completing this form or arranging any other accommodations, contact the ADA Coordinator at 803-777-3854 or

An applicant can self-identify on their application.

Questions or Assistance:


Internal to USC:

If you have a question about the self-identification process or need assistance, please contact the Compliance Specialist, Pam Lawson:

If you have questions about accommodations, please contact the ADA Coordinator, Molly Peirano:


External to USC:

For more information about self-identification or the equal employment obligations of federal contractors under Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act, visit the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) website. 

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