My office has a running joke that we could operate a full daycare center. At current count, we collectively have nearly 20 children–the majority of whom are five and under. We may not see them at staff meetings or the copy machine, but the presence of our children is undeniable. It is more than the adorable faces framed in our offices. Working with fellow parents means a sensitivity to the unique balance of responsibilities in our lives.
I wish all working moms could have such a supportive environment. At nearly 25,000 employees, the University of Iowa is the largest employer in our state, so it’s no surprise so many of our readers are connected to the extended network of Hawkeye employees. If you or your partner are “working with Herky,” here are a number of resources designed to support faculty and staff parents.
University of Iowa has over 60 lactation rooms across campus and UIHC. Many of the rooms offer hospital-grade Medela Symphony breast pumps. You just bring your own personal tubing and flanges. Here is a list of lactation room locations.
While University of Iowa does not maintain its own daycare facility, there are many centers located within one and a half miles of campus (referred to as “Campus Connected”). While privately owned, some of these centers are located in University-owned buildings and cater to UI-affiliated parents. Learn more here.
Back Up Child Care
What do you do when school is closed for an institute day or holiday? One option is to use well-child back-up care through Handicare in Coralville. Click here to learn more about eligibility, fees and reserving a spot.
Sometimes a mildly ill kid means a day of snuggles on the couch, but it’s not always possible to take the day off work. In those cases, Caring Hands & More will come to your home to take care of children with mild fevers, sore throats, or other light illnesses. You will want to pre-enroll with Family Services so your paperwork is on file before the need arises. Click here to learn more.
Flexible Work Arrangements
For some parents, adjustments to work schedules or locations provide needed balance between work and family responsibilities. Family Services offers one-on-one consultation for employees considering this possibility. They also provide a toolkit of templates and guidelines to develop a proposal for your supervisor. Flexible Work Arrangements may include:
- Flextime (individualized start and stop times)
- Compressed work week
- Reduced hours
- Job Sharing
Education, Coaching & Mentoring
Educational programs include Powerful Tools for Caregivers, Powerful Tools for Caregivers of Children with Special Needs, and Finances of Caregiving, all free and held in UI buildings.
UI liveWELL offers one-on-one and group health coaches to provide motivation, planning, and support for your health goals. Topics include “Juggling it All: Health Coaching for Busy Families.”
Planning to adopt? Family Services can connect you with other University of Iowa families that have gone through the process. This resource network consists of UI employees who are volunteering to lend their support and insight.
Resources for Student Parents
Child Care Subsidy: Funds are available to help student parents with childcare. This is not limited to only regular daycare; it includes when you hire sitters so you can study.
Free Finals Week Child Care: Little Angels Learning Center in downtown Iowa City offers free weekend daycare the two Saturdays and Sundays prior to finals.
It’s great to be a Hawkeye! We’re glad you’re here!