According to figures cited by Portland State’s Resource Center for Students with Children, one out of five PSU students is also a parent or caregiver for dependents. If you are a parent enrolled at PSU and have children 18 years of age or younger, there are several campus-based resources and services that are in place to support you and your family in ways ranging from practical to fun.
Resource Center for Students with Children
Smith Memorial Student Union, Suite 462
This is the first place to check out if you’re a student-parent. According to RCSC’s website, the RCSC is a fantastic place to receive services and the support needed to excel academically and after graduation. The RCSC “provides services that support our values of retention, access, social justice, engagement, networking and outreach.”
RCSC features and services include:
• Jim Sells Childcare Assistance Program helps pay up to 50 percent of the cost of on or off-campus childcare. Applications are available on the RCSC webpage or in their office. Non-resident, international and undocumented students are welcome to apply. Applications are due the first Friday of the beginning of each term to be given priority consideration, but applications are accepted past the deadline if there are remaining funds.
• Family resource room with computers, a play area with toys and games and lounge area.
• Free lending library with books on child development, parenting issues, family issues, activities for kids, budgeting and many more helpful topics.
• Childcare information and referral.
• Individual consultations for support, advising, and assistance on personal/family matters and accessing resources.
• Emergency loans.
• Free family events during every academic term.
• Adopt a student family (holiday gift program).
• Children’s clothing closet accessible year-round, with clothing for infants and older children.
• Family-friendly commencement ceremony.
On-campus childcare providers:
Little Vikings Drop-In Childcare Center
Stephen Epler Hall, suite 101
This center is a new addition to PSU and provides up to four hours a day or 12 hours a week of drop-in, reserved and occasional care for children aged six weeks to 12 years, and you only pay for the care you need. See website for rates, hours and reservations.
ASPSU Children’s Center
SMSU, room 127
Housed on the first floor of SMSU, this center has two delightful classrooms, offering full or partial childcare for ages one to six. The rates are hourly. Call for information and enrollment.
Helen Gordon Child Development Center
Southwest 12th Avenue and Market Street
This center is PSU’s full-day infant/toddler, preschool and kindergarten program and laboratory, which serves 200 children, aged four months to six years.
Other family-friendly spaces and resources:
PSU Library Family Study Room
Branford Price Millar Library, room 330
This study room is designed for student-parents and their children and accommodates two families, and includes one PC, one Mac, two scanners and a wide selection of toys and books. You can reserve the room online or check out the key from the circulation desk.
There are eight designated on-campus lactation rooms to offer a quiet environment and privacy for breastfeeding, diapering, etc. The locations are in SMSU 350, the Science Research and Teaching Center B1-22B, Lincoln Hall 244, University Services Building 307, Urban Center 302, Market Center Building 519, Fourth Avenue Building V000-19, and the Academic and Student Rec Center 104. Breastfeeding in any public location is also a legal right, so anywhere on campus is appropriate for you to breastfeed if the need arises.
Academic and Student Rec Center
Student membership to the Rec Center is included in your student fees, and they offer several activities for a wide range of ages. Children and dependents of members age 17 or younger may use the Rec Center during designated youth hours or for special youth events.
Women’s Resource Center
Montgomery Housing Building, basement
Open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.–5 p.m, the WRC has an ample lounge open to all students with comfortable furniture, some toys and books for children, lending library, microwave and more. The center also offers a wide variety of programming and resources for students.
Native American Student and Community Center
According to their website, the NASCC is “a gathering space to celebrate and empower student success through culturally relevant programming, academic support, and inter-generational community engagement to preserve and perpetuate inter-tribal connection through traditions, ceremony, and stories.”
Associated Students of PSU Food Pantry
SMSU, room 325
The ASPSU Food Pantry offers free and confidential access to canned goods and non-perishable items, including baby food, hygiene items such as pads, deodorant, toothpaste and diapers. Clothing is also available.