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December 03, 2014

University welcomes new intercessor

Lynnett Van Slyke will also direct disability compliance efforts

Lynnett Van Slyke
Lynnett Van Slyke

Lynnett Van Slyke brings a wealth of expertise in conflict resolution and disability matters to her new position as University intercessor and director of disability compliance.

Van Slyke worked in the Office of Disability Resources and Services at the University of Pittsburgh since 1997, serving as the office’s director for 14 years. 

“I bring skills in helping individuals with disabilities continue to be productive members of the workforce by engaging the employee and/or the supervisor in interactive discussions regarding reasonable accommodations,” Van Slyke says. “This interactive process generates ideas and solutions that can provide individuals with disabilities the opportunity to meet the essential functions of their position.”

She received her bachelor’s degree in sociology from the State University of New York at Cortland, a master’s degree in student personnel administration from the State University of New York at Buffalo, and a master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling from Pittsburgh. She also earned a certificate of advanced study in disability legal studies from Pitt’s School of Law in May, 2009.

Founded in the early 1970s, the Office of the Intercessor works with students, staff, and faculty across the entire institution. Typically, intercessors assist with relationship problems among peers or with supervisors, harassment or discrimination concerns, diversity issues, and workplace accommodation needs. Intercessors also meet with departments to arrange for educational workshops and presentations.

Need more information?

Lynnett Van Slyke can be reached at 275-9125 or

Learn more about the intercessor’s office at

Van Slyke will work with Frederick Jefferson, professor emeritus, the University’s other intercessor, who specializes in issues related to racial and ethnic diversity.

The University’s intercessors report to the provost, but while they do not share any information about their cases with him, they keep the provost informed about trends they think may need to be addressed at the University level. The intercessors keep conversations confidential unless an individual discloses information that may put that individual or others at risk.

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