Thursday, March 27, 2014

I'm a campus alien

Even though on maternity leave I drop by uni once in a while to meet with my students or some colleagues. Sometimes I have to take the LittleOne with me to not be ordered back home after half an hour because he decides that he's suddenly very hungry. It's quite easy to get around campus with a pram because there are elevators and ramps everywhere you need them. But walking over campus with a pram in the middle of semester is the strangest thing!  Because I'm the only one - so there is a lot of staring. I never have realized that there are no people with prams (as I think about it: not many people in wheelchairs either) on our campus. Occasionally you can see someone with young kids and on very hot days there are people with babies enjoying the AC cooled buildings. But they are obviously not there for work or study. In my home country it is very common to see students with their babies on campus and even in lectures. But here: nothing! And it's certainly not because all the babies are in day care - it's very hard to get a place in day care, even in the universities own places. Students just don't seem to have kids. Or maybe they have family around to take care of them? On the other hand: paying more than 10k per year for studying is a very compelling argument to delay the family business until after the degree.

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