Pregnancy Help in College

Written by College Cliffs Team At, our team, comprising seasoned educators and counselors, is committed to supporting students on their journey through graduate studies. Our advisors, holding advanced degrees in diverse fields, provide tailored guidance, current program details, and pragmatic tips on navigating application procedures.

Reviewed by Linda Weems I got started researching colleges and universities about 10 years ago while exploring a second career. While my second career ended up being exactly what I’m doing now, and I didn’t end up going to college, I try to put myself in your shoes every step of the way as I build out College Cliffs as a user-friendly resource for prospective students.

Updated: March 25, 2024, Reading time: 11 minutes

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With more than 5.4 million pregnant and parenting students in the United States, there’s an imperative need for information about pregnancy help in college. Most of these pregnant students and parenting students are young women in their college years. 

However, with the popularity of undergraduate and graduate degree programs among non-traditional learners, including working professionals and adult students, many of these college students already have families of their own, perhaps with young children still living at home. 

Pregnancy Help in College - fact
College Cliffs is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

It’s a Challenge, but You can do it!

College students without parenting responsibilities already have their fair share of challenges – just imagine the additional challenges that pregnant and parenting students face! Aside from the rigorous academic coursework, these college students also worry about their finances, prenatal healthcare, and childcare. 

The Institute for Women’s Policy Research discloses that only 37% of college students with parenting responsibilities complete their degrees within six years because of these challenges. Blacks, Hispanics, and Latinos, as well as indigenous student parents, have even lower chances of earning their degrees. 

But being a pregnant college student or a student parent shouldn’t be the end of your academic dreams! You will find plenty of helpful pregnancy services and parenting resources vital for a student’s success. These services and resources are available whether you’re a single mom or sharing parenting responsibilities and dealing with a planned or unplanned pregnancy.

Know Your Title IX Rights

Know Your Title IX Rights - Image

Pregnant and parenting students must know their rights and responsibilities under Title IX, a law directing that no individual in the US, on the basis of sex, be denied education benefits or be excluded from education programs and activities receiving federal financial assistance.

Pregnant students must ask their colleges and universities about their Title IX policies and procedures. Here are the crucial aspects that, as a college student, you must look into. 

Title IX Policies and Procedures 

Title IX School Activities and Classes 

Title IX Excused Absences and Medical Leave 

Title IX Harassment 

Of course, every college student – not just pregnant women and mothers – has protection under Title IX. 

Your rights under Title IX are predicated on your sense of responsibility, too. You must ask your college for assistance, keep notes about your Title IX-related experiences, and report relevant issues to the Title IX Coordinator. If you think that your Title IX rights are being violated, you can contact the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.

Individual schools have different institutional services and resources for their pregnant students and student parents. The University of Rhode Island provides a wide range of accommodations, while Auburn University has its Baby Steps program.

Look Into Health Insurance Plans

Not every college student will see the benefit of health insurance plans or be able to afford them. But pregnant students and student parents should look into health insurance plans, which can cost an average of $2,915 for a year. College students also have several insurance options. 

Parent’s Health Insurance Plan

If you’re a college student still considered your parents’ dependent on their tax return, or you’re 25 years old and below, you can be part of their health insurance plan. 

Student Health Insurance Plans

Many schools offer their college students sponsored health insurance plans that are in compliance with the ten health benefits under the Affordable Care Act. Pregnant women can avail of doctor’s visits, pregnancy and childbirth, and prescription drug coverage, among others. 

Spouse/Partner Health Insurance Plan 

For pregnant women who are in a domestic partnership or married, being enrolled in their partner’s or spouse’s health insurance plan is possible. Plus, it has more comprehensive coverage. 

Affordable Care Act Health Insurance

College students who are pregnant can avail of the health insurance offered in the Affordable Care Act marketplace. The insurance plans cover the ten essential health benefits, including maternity and newborn care and pediatric services, which parents will appreciate. 


College students with low incomes may be eligible for Medicaid, while pregnant college students can qualify for Pregnancy Medicaid. 

Check out health insurance plans that allow your baby to be added to your coverage. 

Consider the On-campus and Off-campus Reproductive Healthcare Facilities 

Consider the On-campus and Off-campus Reproductive Healthcare Facilities - Image

Many private and public colleges have on-campus reproductive healthcare clinics that offer a wide range of services, from birth control to abortion services. Individual colleges and universities have specific coverage, too, for abortion rights under the new U.S. Supreme Court ruling. 

In California, all California State University and University of California campuses have made it mandatory to offer medication abortions. Carnegie Mellon University offers healthcare plans for abortion-related services, too, in both their California and Pennsylvania campuses. 

Look into state- and federal government-sponsored programs intended for pregnant women and their children and families, too. The Health Resources and Services Administration offers free healthcare programs, while states provide dental services for free. 

Look into Suitable On-campus and Off-campus Housing Arrangements 

As a pregnant college student, you’re still eligible for on-campus housing under Title IX. But keep in mind that most residential housing isn’t equipped for raising children. You must then work with your school’s campus housing coordinator to find suitable accommodations after giving birth. 

Many schools, such as Bemidji State University, also have on-campus family housing, which allows college students with parenting responsibilities to live in the on-campus apartment complex. You may also want to look into maternity homes if you’re a single mom, live with a family member or with a friend, or live in community single-parent housing. 

The federal government also offers housing assistance for eligible pregnant college students. The Maternity Group Homes, or (MGH) Program for Pregnant and Parenting Youth, Housing Choice Voucher Program, and the Rural Development program are a few examples. 

Know Your Financial Aid Options

As a pregnant college student, you cannot be deprived of your scholarship and/or fellowship because of your temporary medical condition. Otherwise, it constitutes gender-based discrimination under Title IX. 

You can also find several scholarship programs for pregnant college students aside from the state- and federal government-sponsored financial aid programs.

Specific programs include Horizons Scholarships for Pregnant Students, Talbots Women’s Scholarships Fund for Pregnant Students, and Arkansas Single Parent Scholarship Fund. Look into women-specific scholarships, too, such as the Society of Women Engineers Scholarships and Jeannette Rankin Foundation Women’s Scholarship. 

Note that your unborn baby counts as your dependent on FAFSA. This means access to more financial aid that can contribute to your success even while juggling parenting responsibilities. 

Young mothers can also check specific programs like the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Women, Infants, and Children Program. You can get screening services and referrals starting during your pregnancy and up to 6-12 months after the birth of your baby, as well as food vouchers for necessities. 

Assess and Gather Your Support Network

If it’s any consolation, you’re not the only pregnant college student out there! You will find other students managing pregnancy issues, dealing with the challenges of raising children while earning their degree, and succeeding at it.

You will find that their strong support system enables them to juggle their academic and parenting responsibilities – and you can, too. 

Family and Friends 

Aside from the school-sponsored pregnancy- and parenting-related support services and resources, your best support system is your family and friends!  

Religious Charities

But not every pregnant college student can rely on their family and friends for support, sadly. This is where non-profit organizations and religious charities come to the rescue. Catholic Charities, The Christ Child Society, and the Women’s Care Center are a few examples. 

Adoption Agencies 

If you’re planning on putting your baby up for adoption, you should find an adoption agency that provides assistance for pregnant moms like yourself. 

Consider Alternative Learning Methods

If you’re a pregnant student struggling with your pregnancy symptoms and other valid reasons, you must consider alternative ways of completing the academic requirements for your degree.

Among these alternatives are online classes that allow participation in class discussions, submission of assignments, and even taking examinations from the comfort of your home. Many parenting students also take advantage of this method. 

Secure Breastfeeding Resources

Parenting students who are breastfeeding their babies have unique challenges, too! While individual colleges and universities have specific breastfeeding policies and practices, federal law requires lactation rooms for breastfeeding mothers.

These rooms must be accessible with well-equipped facilities like chairs, breast pumps, kitchen appliances, and storage refrigerators. Ask your school’s Title IX coordinator about breastfeeding rooms and other appropriate facilities even before you give birth. 

As for breastfeeding your baby while in class, you must ask your school about its specific policies since these vary between states and schools. You can miss class for breastfeeding and pumping reasons, but your absences must be declared as official excuses.  

Look Into Childcare Facilities and Options 

Look Into Childcare Facilities and Options - Image

Parenting students may find online classes more convenient, but there are instances when on-campus events require in-person attendance. This is where the value of campus childcare centers comes in!

You can leave your baby in the childcare center while you attend classes, which means a significant reduction in costs and hassles. 

However, only about 50% of public colleges and universities offer these facilities, while less than 10% of private schools have these services. The most notable schools with on-campus childcare centers are The City University of New York and Smith College. 

Furthermore, childcare is expensive, with an average annual cost of around $10,170 – and that doesn’t include diaper changes and milk budgets. Fortunately, student parents may receive government-sponsored subsidies or discounted charges from their schools. 

Colleges and universities that offer childcare subsidies include the University of Michigan and Wilson College. 

We also suggest checking out the Office of Childcare website for more information about subsidies. 

Assert Your Rights and Get Help. You’re not Alone!

Your journey toward becoming a student parent is filled with physical, emotional, and financial challenges. You may want to give up pursuing your degree and just focus on being a parent. While it’s okay to feel down, you may want to take a step back and re-evaluate your goals in life! 

You should strive to adopt a positive attitude without getting into toxic positivity. You may want to take a break, too, from your studies with the goal of returning as soon as you are able to and taking advantage of the support services and resources offered by your school. 

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