Fires are crackling, snow is falling, and marshmallows are melting in mugs of peppermint cocoa. Children carefully listen for the bells of Santa’s sleigh as the sound of Christmas cheer floats through the air. College campuses become quiet as that sweet silent night, closing their doors, pondering, “Have we been naughty or nice?”
You see, there’s a special population who attends college throughout the year. 1 in 5, in fact, are mothers working hard to build the future of their dreams. These mothers deserve equal treatment and care on campus and Students for Life of America (SFLA) is here to help Santa make his list and check it twice! SFLA evaluated colleges to find out if these campuses empower women as much as it seems. Which campuses brought pregnant and parenting students good tidings all year and which campuses deserve coal this Christmas Eve?
SFLA’s Naughty LIST:
North Park University, does not let students remain in dorms after finding out they’re pregnant. How Jack Frost of them to send women out into the cold.
Towson University, is currently giving the Students for Life group trouble. The Tigers for Life are trying to bring more lactation rooms to campus since there is only one at Towson. The current lactation room frequently has a line and students are using it to study! Rather than regulating the problem, administrators told our students it wasn’t necessary to bring more. Women need a safe, clean, and private space to nurse and pump! Humbug!
Trinity Washington University, lists Planned Parenthood and other places to get emergency contraception, but do not offer any pregnancy resources on campus. We know that Planned Parenthood is paid in abortions and they’ve turned women away who want to keep their babies. If schools claim to offer choice, they need to provide women with life-affirming options, rather than only abortion. Universities who claim they empower women need to provide the proper tools to help their students keep their babies and achieve their goals.
Tacoma Community College, does not offer expectant mother and new parent parking which can really help students get to class with ease when further along in a pregnancy. The pregnancy resources are very hard to find and there are no support groups for parents on campus! Community colleges have the largest percentage of student parents, so their accommodations should match the demographic.
University of New Mexico charges $100 for options counseling which includes a discussion of pregnancy options and an ultrasound, but they do not offer financial assistance if a woman cannot afford the $100. Pregnancy Help Centers (PHCs) offer this for free! On the other hand, if a woman wants an abortion, they offer tremendous help if the student has financial issues. Sounds like the Grinch who stole Christmas!
University of Northern Colorado students are determined to silence life-affirming options on their campus by pushing legislators to regulate the advertising language of local pregnancy resources. These centers are medical clinics offering pregnancy tests, ultrasounds and medical referrals for pregnant students. If you offer pregnancy tests, shouldn’t you be able to say so? Sounds like these students are South Pole elves.
SFLA’s Nice LIST:
Northeastern Illinois University, will allow students to remain in dorms after finding out they’re pregnant and these students can remain in dorms until the child is two years old!
University of Texas – Arlington, created a $750 scholarship specifically for pregnant or parenting students at UTA. This scholarship was awarded to a student who has a toddler and the SFLA group, Mavericks for Life, will be throwing a birthday party for the toddler in the spring!
Benedictine College – Kansas, the Students for Life group has created a support group for pregnant and parenting students that has grown so big that even pregnant community members reach out to them for help. They are now being referred to as the Pregnancy Help Center of the town!
Villanova University, works hard to accommodate a student’s needs and concerns regarding classes, housing, and personal counseling during and after the pregnancy. They are a participant in “The Nurturing Network” which means if a Villanova student wishes to live in another geographic area during her pregnancy, she is able to so without penalty!
College of Southern Idaho offers on-site childcare and it’s available to students! This is an essential resource to help parenting students succeed. The Pregnant on Campus Initiative’s website has a section that allows students to ask for specific needs and the most sought-after resource emailed in is childcare. Way to go, Idaho!
Marquette University, has lists of supportive resources for pregnant and parenting students hanging in every residence hall on campus. Even though this is a religious university, they are making sure a student who finds herself in an unplanned pregnancy feels welcomed. The resources listed include counseling, childcare, nursing room access, as well as specific people to contact for concerns related to finances, housing, and academic advising.
“And his heart grew three sizes that day.”
We hope all schools remember that we know if they’ve been naughty or nice to pregnant and parenting students. Planned Parenthood can sit on its throne of lies because our amazing Students for Life groups are no cotton-headed ninny-muggins. They’re here to make sure pregnant and parenting students get the true support they need to bring joy and good tidings for generations to come.
For more information on pregnant and parenting student rights, go to www.PregnantOnCampus.org/Title-IX.