Advertisement

Moms on Campus


When LSU graduate student Wendy Hansing gave birth to her son, she realized that support and spaces for mothers on campus were limited. Not only were there no centralized resources from which mothers could receive information and help, but there was also a lack of basic necessities, such as lactation spaces, on many campuses. Furthermore, when Hansing took two semesters off from school to take care of her newborn, the school counted it against her.
“The more I looked into this, the more I realized this was not a problem unique to LSU,” says Hansing. “There are few to no organizations nationally that support a mother pursuing higher education degrees or working on a campus.”

In the summer of 2018, Hansing teamed up with her husband, Duncan, and her friends, Sarah Joy Hays and Candice Hillman, to launch Moms on Campus. Moms on Campus is an organization that fights to increase the availability and awareness of resources for any mom on campus, whether she is an undergraduate, graduate student, or faculty or staff member.
Hansing’s main goal is to gather information at LSU to identify the needs of the mom community. By partnering with LSU, she hopes to fill the gaps that currently exist, whether it be through counseling, lactation spaces, or childcare.

“The most difficult part so far has been the time commitment this requires on top of my research, as well as being a wife and mother. It takes a substantial amount of phone calls, emails, and meetings to facilitate change at the university level. I have been finding other moms on campus by ‘pounding the pavement’ and speaking with classmates, faculty, staff, and coworkers,” says Hansing.

Fortunately, it looks like Hansing, her friends, and her husband’s hard work has paid off. Title IX coordinator Jenny Stewart found a way to reinstate Hansing’s two semesters off to her graduate timeline. Hansing hopes to continue to work with Stewart to pursue broader policy changes at LSU.

LSU has also told Moms on Campus that they are committed to outfitting nine new lactation spaces for moms on campus, as well as creating a centralized website to provide information and resources to parents.

“There are more moms at LSU than I originally thought. We’re just so disconnected that it feels isolating. So many people care about this issue that the response has been overwhelmingly positive, and we’ve seen changes at LSU happen much quicker than we anticipated,” says Hansing.

With such big wins for the organization, Hansing hopes to continue into the future by creating chapters of Moms on Campus at different colleges around the country. 

Hansing enjoys her role in Moms on Campus because it gives her the opportunity to meet and speak with other moms at LSU. She wants them to know that they are not alone and that every pregnancy and child is different, so the more perspectives, the better.

“We want to hear from all moms and friends of moms to help us focus on what the most pressing needs are,” Hansing says. “We shouldn’t have to choose between our families and our education or careers anymore.” ■

Reviews

1 Review
Carole Kaplan
Canton, MA
Well done, Wendy Handing!

Remarkable achievements by a dedicated Mom with support from her husband and friends. Kudos, Wendy and your supporters.

December 2018

Did you find this review helpful?

0

01 Dec 2018


By Madeline Rathle

Recent Articles more articles

Joyful Reads from July

in Joy Holden, Turn the Page

Hello! I’m Joy, and I love to read. I consider it my greatest talent and favorite hobby. Another one of my preferred pastimes is recommending reads to anyone who is the least bit curious. Seriously. I am always volunteering book recs to people near m

Goodbye Preschool, Hello Kindergarten

in Mari Walker, School

I’ve done this before, and I survived. I will do it again and survive, probably even thrive. But I’m still feeling lots of feelings about upcoming changes in our family’s life, mostly about sending our second daughter to elementary school for the ver

Connecting Virtually: 12 Fun Online Clubs & Extracurricular Activities for Kids

in Family Life, School

Social interaction during childhood is more than just fun. It’s a vital part of childhood development. As kids grow, they learn from their peers and through playing with or talking to others. Engaging in social situations with other children teaches

An Eye on Vision Health: Protecting Children’s Eyesight

in Health and Wellness, Family Life

We all grew up with parents (or grandparents!) who were concerned about protecting our eyes. While watching television, we often heard: “Don’t sit so close!” or “Why don’t you go outside instead?” Today’s children are immersed even more in a virtual

Advertisement
Newsletter