More than 4.8 million undergraduate college students are raising children, according to the Pregnant on Campus website.

To help some of these pregnant undergraduates, Student Government Association (SGA) senator Kyleigh Snavely is hoping to collaborate with Parking Services and Disability Services to establish parking passes in  for pregnant Ball State students and faculty.

Linked to a disability parking pass, the pregnancy pass would be temporary and require a doctor’s note. However, the pass could last post-pregnancy if complications arise or a doctor requires it, Snavely said.

“I hope to provide a welcoming environment for all pregnant and parenting students on Ball State's campus,” Snavely said. “The pass will be for those who need it, not specifically third trimester parents, but this is when most expecting parents have the most trouble.”

Nora Hopf, founder of Pregnant and Parenting Support Group, brought this idea to SGA last year.

“It’s difficult to get to and from classes, especially when you are really pregnant,” Hopf said. “We are working to embrace that people want to pursue higher education even though they are parents.”

The pass would help offer needed accommodations for pregnant women and make education easier, Hopf said.

Christina Guy, Ball State alumna, attended Ball State while pregnant. She said a parking pass like this would have made the experience much easier.

“I was in my third trimester taking summer classes at Ball State and it was not fun walking from the commuter lot in the heat,” Guy said. “Special parking would add a sense of inclusiveness for pregnant students.”

Guy also said because of morning sickness, it was hard for her to make it to class on time. With a closer parking spot, she said she thinks it would be easier for parents to consistently attend classes.

Possible parking locations include spots by the Student Center Parking Garage, McKinley Garage and the North Commuter Lot, as those locations allow easy access to the buses, said Nick Capozolli, Parking Services Manager.

Snavely is working to contact pregnant students in order to provide them with parking near their classes. 

Contact Liz Rieth with comments at ejrieth@bsu.edu or on Twitter at @liz_rieth.