According to data from the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study, 22% of all college undergraduates are parents. 70% of them are mothers, and 30% are fathers. Many parents decide to start college as a way to work towards a better future for their children. Others return after the break that they took when they decided to have children. Whatever the case is, it’s a major challenge that demands rock-solid willpower.
The educational system was never meant to correspond with the needs of parents. It requires a student’s entire focus, even when they enroll in part-time studies. Although everything works out just fine for most parents, they face multiple challenges throughout their time as college students.
5 Challenges for Parents in College
They Have to Work
College is expensive, so most students have to work even if they earn a scholarship. Parents face an even greater challenge: they have to support a family. Raising a kid is a financially demanding responsibility. A parent in college is likely to work for more hours a week when compared to the average student. Add the fact that they have to spend any free time with their children, and you’ll realize that it’s almost impossible for them to get some rest.
There’s No Time to Write an Essay
A single essay can take weeks of preparation. You have to go through the planning, research, outlining, writing, and editing stages without skipping a single detail. Sometimes, the overwhelming nature of this process can lead one to consider other alternatives. If you ever find yourself in such a situation, you might want to explore the option to buy a research paper online.
Right when you’re supposed to be inspired to write an essay, you feel unable to write a single sentence. This is the type of situation when students recall a friend who said “EduBirdie essay writer help always give me satisfactory results.” For parents without a realistic chance to complete a complex project on time, hiring a professional writer may be the only solution.
Housing Is a Major Issue
If a parent decides to study away from their hometown, they would hardly choose a dorm room as a housing option. They would have to rent an apartment off-campus, where their family could visit and possibly stay with them. This is a massive expense that requires money up front. It’s also associated with credit checks and a big responsibility to meet the rent due dates. Affordable apartments are often too far away from the campus, so the student has to plan commuting expenses, too. Transportation is also an issue for the children, who will need to attend school.
A Parent Has to Think of Child Care
Proper child care is getting more expensive. On average, hiring a nanny for a single child in 2020 was $612 per week. Family care centers are a more affordable option (from $177 per week). However, a family care center doesn’t work at night, when the student might need to focus on a research paper. Hiring a nanny will be necessary at least during exam week. This is an additional expense that parents have to plan and cover.
Children Need Their Parent’s Attention
Many parents are self-confident about the challenges of parenting and education. They are sure that once they enroll in college and make a financial commitment, they will achieve their goal to graduate. In reality, the challenge is much more complex than they ever imagined. College is hard. The student won’t enjoy all courses and classes. They will have a pile of homework to complete and loads of studying material to cover. Their kid will demand (and deserve) attention. Should we even mention the days when they get sick and cling to their parents for hours? Parents have the strength to endure everything, but they have to be aware that it’s not easy.
You Can Do This!
Now that we covered the greatest challenges of being a parent in college, let’s talk about the benefits. You’re doing this for a brighter future not only for your children, but for yourself, too. If you always dreamed of earning a degree and working your way towards the desired career, nothing should stop you.
Children aren’t an obstacle. Yes; they are the main priority in your life, and everything else is secondary to their needs. But you’re still a strong person with unique needs, which you can meet. Attending college and graduating on time won’t be easy, but you’ve got this! It will be easier for you to persevere if you’re aware of all the challenges and you plan ways to overcome them.
BIO: Gloria Delgado explores educational opportunities for under-represented categories of students. She shares her insights and tips through blog posts. Gloria is a firm believer in the notion that one can achieve any goal they put their mind to.