Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services

Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services is part of the Accessibility Resource Center and coordinates accommodations for deaf and hard of hearing students. Accommodations include signed language interpreters, real-time captioning, assistive listening devices, and note taking.

Contact Details

Phone: (505) 277-6605


Interim Associate Director: Tommi Tejeda
Staff Interpreter: Helen Arenholz
Staff Interpreter: Risa Roybal 

DHHS Handbooks

Request a Signed Language Interpreter

ARC/DHHS schedules all UNM interpreting/captioning requests.

Accessibility Resource Center schedules sign language interpreters when it is determined to be a reasonable accommodation. We will schedule signed language interpreters for both academic and University co-curricular activities when the student makes this request.

Requests for interpreter services must be made at least one week prior to the event or activity taking place in order for ARC to have enough time to contact and schedule a qualified interpreter. Last-minute requests cannot be guaranteed; however, attempts will always be made to schedule an interpreter/captionist.

Special Event Requests

In addition to regularly scheduled classes, ARC/DHHS schedules interpreters/captionists for campus events. These include appointments with professors, field trips, campus activities, or any other activity that is not the normally scheduled class meeting. Requests can also be made for university-sponsored events and work related meetings.

About Signed Language Interpreters

It is our priority to find interpreters who use the mode of communication of the individual’s choice. When hiring interpreters, UNM will seek to hire the most qualified and skilled interpreters available. Every attempt will be made to fill interpreter requests with Staff Interpreters first, taking into consideration:

  • Deaf consumer’s preference
  • Match of knowledge and skill

ARC/DHHS maintains a pool of On-Call Interpreters to be placed in an assignment when a staff interpreter is unavailable or is not the best match for the request. On-Call Interpreters will be contacted in the following order of priority:

  • Deaf consumer’s preference
  • Professionalism
  • Certification/Qualification
  • Prior experience
  • Availability

All interpreters employed at UNM adhere to the Code of Professional Conduct issued by the National Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf.

Other DHHS Accommodations

Real-time Captioning

A real-time captionist is a stenographer similar to those used in courtroom settings. All verbal communication that transpires during the class session is transmitted onto the screen of the student’s laptop computer via a remote real-time captionist. When the class is over, the student is given a copy of the lecture, which they can use as their class notes.


Note takers provide copies of their notes to students who are eligible and approved for this accommodation. ARC/DHHS will assist students in finding a volunteer note taker enrolled in his/her class..

Assistive Listening Devices, or FM Systems

Assistive listening devices allow amplification of the lecturer’s voice or audio portion of a videotape and filters out any extraneous noises.

Signed Language Interpreting

Signed Language Interpreters are professionals who help facilitate communication between Deaf and hearing individuals using signed and spoken languages.

Look through some of our other accommodation services.