How do childcare and pregnancy affect the academic success of college students?

Meredith Manze, Dana Watnick, Nicholas Freudenberg

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objective: We examined socioeconomic, academic, and health-related factors associated with respondent reports that childcare interfered with academics. Participants: 176 undergraduate student parents Methods: We administered a cross-sectional survey to a representative sample of students at a public university in New York City. Using a sub-set of those who reported being parents/guardians (n = 176), we conducted bivariate analyses to assess factors associated with childcare problems interfering with school. Results: About 30% of the sample reported that childcare interfered with school somewhat/moderately/a lot in the last year. Compared to those with no/little perceived interference, they were significantly more likely to need mental health treatment (30% vs. 13%; p < 0.01), worry that they would run out of food sometimes/often (32% vs. 16%; p < 0.01), and experience housing problems (26% vs. 9%; p < 0.01). Conclusions: Offering mental healthcare and services addressing food and housing insecurity can help college students to navigate challenges inherent to being a student parent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)460-467
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of American College Health
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2023


  • Childcare
  • food insecurity
  • housing insecurity
  • mental health
  • pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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