Student Parents

This site collects information on resources relevant to student parents:

The Family Room

The NU work/life office has launched a new program for student-parents. NU faculty, staff and students with a NetID and password can join for free to find babysitters and pet sitters by searching the database. More information is available at

Bright Horizons Day Care Center
Northwestern University faculty, staff and full-time students have a new child care option in Evanston. Spaces are available now at Bright Horizons, which recently opened the doors to its new child care facility at 1629 Orrington Ave.

New Mom Support Group

Mothers’ Rooms
Northwestern University is pleased to announce the addition of a dedicated mothers’ room to help support nursing mothers upon their transition back to the University. Baby changing stations have also been installed at various locations across campus. We recognize the importance fostering a family-friendly environment at the University for graduate-student parents.
The new mothers’ room space is adjacent to the women’s restroom in the lower level of Rebecca Crown Center, 633 Clark Street. Nursing mothers will have exclusive keyed access to the mothers’ room. This will ensure the necessary privacy and availability for its users. Mothers’ room keys will be issued to nursing mothers by Claire Repsold, who can be reached at (847) 491-5534.
A second mothers’ room location on north campus is available in Pancoe ENH Life Sciences Pavilion, room 1-410. Keys are issued by the Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Cell Biology Office, located in Hogan Hall room 2-100. The BMBCB office can be reached at (847) 491-5061.
Faculty, staff and students across campus are welcome to obtain a key and reserve space in the reservation book located inside the rooms. General questions about the mothers’ rooms should be directed to the Work/Life, Child and Family Resource Office at (312) 503-6631.
A third Mother's Room is located in the Main Library. The key for this room can be checked out from the Main Library circulation desk for two hours by presenting a valid NU Wildcard or a purple borrower's card. The room is inside the women's restroom on the third floor. A campus phone is available in the room. Reservations may be made in advance by sending an e-mail message to or by calling the Main Library circulation desk at 847-491-7633. Questions or feedback about the Mothers' Room in the Main Library can be sent to

On the Chicago campus there is Abbott Hall, 14th Floor, room 1428, Chicago; door is unlocked unless in use. Questions can be answered by Chicago Human Resources Office in Abbott Hall, Suite 150 or by calling (312) 503-8481.  Also, Prentice Women’s Hospital, Lounges available on 1st and 2nd floors, Chicago

Baby Changing Tables
Baby changing tables are located at the following locations:

  • Norris Center men’s and women’s restrooms on the lower  level
  • Pancoe mothers’ room 
  • Dearborn men’s and women’s restrooms
  • Tech Building F-wing men’s (1st floor) and women’s (2nd floor) restrooms

Health Insurance
If you and/or your dependents do not have health coverage through NU please review the health insurance plan offered by the State of Illinois:

Student Associations
Northwestern Graduate Parent Association (NU-Mamas). This group provides community building opportunities for men and women graduate and professional students who have, are expecting, or planning on having children while they are enrolled at Northwestern University to discuss the unique challenges of having/raising children while in graduate school. Contact Assata Kokayi at for more information.

Leave of Absence
A student who is working towards residency requirements and needs to take a leave from the university must request an official leave of absence. Students use the “Petition for Absence” form via TGS Forms in CAESAR to apply for a leave of absence, citing why leave is necessary. The form is reviewed by both the program and The Graduate School.

Previous TGS Days Out
The Graduate School and the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs host quarterly Day Out activities for students who are parents. Previous Days Out have included:

TGS Day Out (2013-14)
Navy Pier Winter WonderFest - December 14, 2013
Museum of Science and Industry – April 19, 2014
Chicago Botanic Garden – June 7, 2014

TGS Day Out (2012-13)
Navy Pier Winter WonderFest - December 15, 2012
Shedd Aquarium – March 23, 2013
Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum – June 8, 2013

TGS Day Out (2011-12)
Navy Pier Winter WonderFest - December 10, 2011
Museum of Science and Industry - March 17, 2012
Morton Arboretum - June 30, 2012