The Children’s Center plans to add infant care and expand toddler care services and pilot evening care hours, thanks to a four-year, $1.3 million federal grant awarded to the Division of Student Affairs at Cal Poly Pomona.
The grant will support additional staff, furnish classrooms, upgrade facilities and provide professional development for teachers. The center aims to offer infant and expanded toddler care by fall 2021. It will pilot evening care hours Monday through Thursday from 6 to 8:30 p.m. beginning spring semester 2020, one of the first in the CSU system to do so.
In addition, the center will hire a new student parent success coach to help student parents navigate the university, access parent resources and find low-cost child care for those not enrolled at the center. The grant will also help offset childcare costs for services for income-eligible students.
“The Children’s Center provides support for student parents, faculty, and staff throughout CPP by providing a safe, local and educational environment for their children. This additional funding will allow the Center to serve even more Broncos, create more family-oriented events, and help our future Broncos succeed,” said Rocio Antonio-Martinez, ASI Greek senator and a member of the parent advisory board.
The Children’s Center creates safe learning environments for children ages 18 months to 5 years, and most are children of students, faculty and staff. The grant comes at a time when demand has exceeded the center’s capacity, and more parents are seeking evening care.
Recent interviews conducted by CPP faculty Dr. Brianne Dávila and Dr. Giselle Navarro-Cruz revealed specific needs identified by student parents, and their work informed the grant proposal to the Child Care Access Means Parents in School Program in the U.S. Department of Education.
“We interviewed 75 student parents on campus to better understand their experiences and found them to be resilient and motivated by their children to continue their education,” Navarro-Cruz said. “The grant will help make it easier for them to stay on their path.”
A working group of partners from various departments and divisions will also be established, tasked with effective coordination and planning of new services offered.
Established in 1974, the Children’s Center at Cal Poly Pomona operates under the administration and support of both Associated Students, Inc (ASI) and the Division of Student Affairs.
For more information, contact Celeste Salinas, Children’s Center director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.