The University of Sussex is a leading research-intensive university located near Brighton. The University has an international and local outlook, with staff and students from more than 100 countries and participation in frequent engagements in community activities and services. This includes taking part in community projects, recruiting volunteers in Sussex and improving access to higher education through widening participation.

terptree have been working with the University, providing BSL/English interpreters for over five-years.

Teresa Stone, Disability Advisor, works with students with an ongoing health condition to ensure that they get the best access to education and services of the University. As part of this work, Teresa works with deaf students to make sure that they get access to all the University has to offer.

Teresa first discovered terptree by searching the internet for communication agencies. At that time, she was looking for someone to provide qualified teachers of the deaf. Since that time, terptree have provided an ongoing role to the University. This has included providing note-taking and BSL/English interpreting support across a wide range of subjects, from maths to psychology.

Sussex uni

Teresa explained that the work with terptree is generally commissioned through the Disabled Students Allowances Quality Assurance Group (DSA-QAG) website. Practitioners have to register on this website to be able to provide non-medical help to disabled students and students who need extra support in their studies. terptree is registered as such a practitioner, which means that the University have been able to maintain their ongoing relationship with them.

Teresa told us that there are many benefits of having a dedicated agency working consistently with a student. “Agencies, such as terptree, have a wider pool of specialist and qualified interpreters to draw from, which we would not have access to in-house. This ensures consistency of provision, ease of communication and familiarity with the agency you are working with. They get to understand your needs, the needs of the student and provide communication professionals who meet these needs.

As terptree are an established agency, who have given us consistency in their provision during the five plus years we have worked with them, they have got to know us, and can therefore bring this knowledge in the support that they provide our students.”

terptree are delighted that University of Sussex found them through their internet search and that we are able to continue working with them through our inclusion on the DSA-QAG website. terptree’s mission is to change the world for deaf people, and access to education is clearly an essential step towards achieving it.

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