New learning community to help single parents

Missy Pollock

The Offices of Admissions and Adult Services are searching for students who are single parents for next fall.

The offices will sponsor a new learning community on campus. The Learning and Independence for Family Education was started by Assistant Director of Admissions Eboni Pringle and Director of Adult Services Rachel Anderson, who wanted to aid single-parent students. The program is now in the recruitment process.

Ten single-parent families will be a part of the new program, nicknamed LIFE. The families will be housed in Allerton Family Housing.

The students who qualify for the LIFE program will be new freshmen or transfer students with the highest level of need.

Pringle said she wants to start from the ground up. Students who have been on campus know what resources are available. LIFE is designed to support students through the transitional stages with their families on campus.

The program is aimed at helping single-parent students and their families adapt to college life.

“Single parents are modeling for their children,” Anderson said. “To have successful literacy at the student level and parent level, it’s important for the parent to work at it.”

The residents will be encouraged to interact with the other families in Allerton. With students living in apartments in the same housing facility, they can form a core community, Anderson said. The resources are right next door.

The learning community will have programs designed around the family and how to balance responsibilities both as a parent and a student.

A taskforce of student parents on campus and off will help the learning community deal with things such as where to take sick children when they have class, how to study with crying babies and how to balance responsibilities, Pringle said.

“The students have different needs than the traditional student,” Pringle said. “We will help them balance everything.”

The new program will be one of only three programs serving single-parent students and their children from their home at an Ohio college, Baldwin-Wallace and Ohio State University have the other two.

“Guidance counselors and social service workers call adult services every year and ask if we have anything for single-parent students,” Anderson said. “Now we can say we do.”

Contact Adult Services for more information about LIFE at 330-672-7933.

Contact student affairs reporter Missy Pollock at [email protected].