Non-Academic Services

In the United States, households headed by single women have the highest poverty rates compared to all other types of households. A 2012 Institute for Women's Policy Research report, showed that 69% of student parents’ incomes were 200 percent below the federal poverty line.
 
Due to financial struggles, lack of housing, transportation, food, clothing, and other basic needs are often referenced in scholarly research as obstacles to access, persistence, and completion for low-income single mother students. Forms of assistance are often disparate, confusing, and not easily accessible, which leads many low-income single mothers to forgo them altogether. Additionally, some mothers choose not to apply for social programs due to the attached stigma that makes them feel as though they are “abusing the system”. Other mothers do participate in basic needs community programs like food banks, free clinics, and clothing closets; however, many of these programs have participation requirements in order to access the resources, which can prove restrictive for already overburdened single mother students.
Implementing easily accessible and welcoming non-academic support services on campus is crucial to increasing parenting student academic success, especially for single mother students. Learn how to expand your institution's non-academic supports for this student population here.
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     Educational Policy, 27(3), 499-530. Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1177/0895904812453995
Cerven, C. (2013). Public and private lives: Institutional structures and personal supports in low-income single mother's educational pursuits.
     Education Policy Analysis Archives, 21(17), 1-30. Retrieved from https://epaa.asu.edu/ojs/article/view/1179
Goldrick-Rab, S., & Sorensen, K. (2010). Unmarried parents in college. The Future of Children,20(2), 179-2013. Retrieved
     from http://search.ebscohost.com.mutex.gmu.edu/login.aspx?direct=true&db=mnh&AN=20964137&site=ehost-live
Institute for Women's Policy Research (2015). Prepping colleges for parents. Retrieved from https://iwpr.org/wp-
     wpallimport/files/iwpr-content/uploads/export/publications/Support%20for%20Student%20Parents%20Paper_
     MAIN_6%2017%2015%20clean.pdf
Katz, S. (2013). Give us a chance to get an education: Single mothers' survival narratives and strategies for pursuing higher education on
     welfare. Journal of Poverty, 17(3), 273-304. Retrieved from https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/
     10875549.2013.804477
Mercado-Lopez, L.M. (2018). How faculty can help student parents succeed. Inside Higher Ed. Retrieved from    
     https://www.insidehighered.com/advice/2018/11/30/advice-supporting-student-parents-and-other-caregivers-opinion
Wilson, K. (2011). If not welfare, then what? How single mothers finance college post-welfare reform. Journal of Sociology & Social
     Welfare, 38(4), 51-76. Retrieved from https://scholarworks.wmich.edu/jssw/vol38/iss4/4/
Women Employed. (2012). Low-income mothers at community college: Recommendations for practices to improve completion. Retrieved from
      https://ascend.aspeninstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/LowIncomeSingleMothersatCommunityCollege2012.pdf

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© 2019 by Jennifer Pocai. Proudly created with Wix.com