MSU students who use wheelchair-accessible seating can now cheer on the football team from the Spartan Stadium student section thanks to the recent installation of new viewing platforms.
The $850,000 project, which includes a platform for 20 wheelchair locations along with additional companion spaces, allows students with accessibility needs to enjoy the game and traditions of the student section with their friends and classmates in sections 11-14. Additionally, the entrances into the student sections have been updated to meet accessibility standards.
While the stadium previously was compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, the viewing platforms were across the stadium from the student section.
“We are very excited that this project will allow our students with accessibility needs to cheer on the football team with their fellow student fans,” Athletic Director Mark Hollis said. “Ensuring all members of the Spartan community can enjoy our athletic contests is a priority. We would like to thank the students over the years who have engaged with us on how to make this project a reality.”
One of those students was Katie Feirer, a senior advertising major who uses a wheelchair and worked to bring attention to this issue last fall. She met with the President's Advisory Committee on Disability Issues (PACDI) and with officials from the Athletic Department.
“All students can now be a part of the Spartan family,” Feirer said. “I will now be able to experience the excitement and energy of the student section.”
Paulette Granberry Russell, senior adviser to the president and member of PACDI, said the project aligns with MSU’s values of inclusion.
“MSU has been a leader in providing disability services and accommodations to our students, and our efforts extend to event venues as well,” Russell said. “Students, especially Katie Feirer, who advocated that we expand wheelchair accessible seating in the student section are to be commended for their commitment to making MSU a more inclusive community.”
In addition to the viewing platforms, the project also expands and improves access to the student section for all students, which help minimize wait times for entering and exiting. For more information the game day experience at Spartan Stadium, visit http://gameday.msu.edu/.