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Pursuing College While Pregnant

March 2024: 

Pursuing college as a student struggling with resource insecurity can be a battle in itself but going to college while pregnant can be an even bigger challenge. I found out I was pregnant last year at the end of August and was extremely shocked about being pregnant. I am only part way through my community college degree and I have worked hard to find ways to study and pursue my education while working to support myself. Now I would not only have to care for myself but for another human being.  In this post I will share some of the struggles I’ve experienced and discuss strategies I used to overcome some of the obstacles I have faced while continuing to pursue my college education while pregnant.

Health Complications: 

I suffered some health complications in my first trimester including extreme morning sickness. I was sick to the point where I was nauseous all day and wasn’t able to keep any food or liquids down which caused me to need an IV due to severe dehydration. Luckily I was taking online classes and didn’t need to be physically present on campus. I also communicated regularly with my professors if I knew I would be late on an assignment. This was really helpful! I recommend always communicating with your professors if you need extra support, especially if you’re having a sick day.

Taking Classes while Working and Pregnant:

I work part-time as a caregiver while I am going to school. This is necessary but means that I have even less time for school. Handling pregnancy health challenges, making sure I rest enough, and get to my pregnancy medical appointments requires time! I’m six months pregnant now and with the help of a counselor, I’ve decided to only take two classes for the spring semester. I need my job so I can’t really cut back on my part-time work as a caregiver and I didn’t want to overwhelm myself. 

If you’re pregnant and going to school and you feel like taking 12 units is too much, then I recommend taking only two or three classes so you don’t stress yourself especially if the semester is fast paced. I’ve also made sure to communicate with my professors ahead of time letting them know that I’m pregnant and when my due date is. I suggest any pregnant college student consider talking to your counselor before a semester so they can help you decide what works for you while taking classes. 

Looking Ahead is Scary! 

Sometimes I have wondered how I could continue to study, work and be pregnant… and later study, work while caring for my child. … but honestly, I found that becoming pregnant while pursuing college somehow has made me want to go harder in school and not give up on my career.  I want my child to be proud of me and feel like I did whatever it took to make a life for him.