Single Parents Forum: Single Family Voices
    

Go Back   Single Parents Forum: Single Family Voices >
(``'·.¸(``'·.¸ Tips, Tricks & Ideas ¸.·'´´)¸.·'´´)
> School & Work Life > Campus Single Parents

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-03-2011, 09:34 PM   #1
monquin
Learning to Surf The Board
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 17
Rep Power: 0
monquin is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Please, I need your advice!

I am a newly single mother to an 8 month old. In the fall, I am starting college again after a couple of years out of the habit of being in school.

Any advice on how I can manage this?

I'm going to have to take public transportation to school (scared about that because I am not only moving to a new city, but I have never taken public transportation! ) Any advice on what gear I should maybe have for being a single mom in school?
I can't really think of everything I need to know...
My son is already 20 lbs. I was thinking about strapping him to the front of me so that boarding public transportation would be easier...but he is already past the weight limit for that.

I guess I will just tell you of my situation and maybe someone can just pass on sage advice.

Like I said, I am a newly single mom to an 8 month old boy. There will be a lot of walking and boarding public transportation.
I am going to have to leave him in daycare.
I am probably going to end up living in the town next to where my school is, so I will have a longer than average commute.

I guess I just need any advice you have on public transportation and any advice you have on leaving him in daycare.
Plus, any advice you have AT ALL about being in school and working+being a single mom.

I hope I didn't confuse anyone...haha.
I am so confused, myself!
monquin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2011, 09:45 PM   #2
LSL
The blunt one;)


 
LSL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Somewhere on the left coast
Posts: 11,334
Rep Power: 405
LSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support Legend
Default Re: Please, I need your advice!

Right up my alley! I started college at the age of 28, when my daughter was 5 years old. I am better with specific questions, but I will try to give you some advice as best as I can.

Public transportation: I rarely ride public transportation because our town is so small that it is not very often it goes by..... so no help there really. Though you know, you can adjust your student loans/grants to include not only daycare but minimum transporation costs -- I think it is up to 1200 a year. In which case, you could take that money and buy a really inexpensive car that will get you through... you might think about it. Time = money. and this would save you some major, major time.

Next, what would you need? I got through undergrad with a spiral notebook for each class to take notes with. I didn't use a laptop..... though by law school, I could not live without my laptop. So, either way, whichever makes you more comfortable. A good, comfortable backpack or rolling backpack is also a must.

The community college that I went to for the first 2 years of college, had a daycare center onsite. I would see if where you are going has the same. When I went to the 4 year college, there were 3 churches within 1 block of the school that all had daycare facilities and afterschool daycare programs.

I won't lie to you. single mom + school = sacrifice + hard work...... Looks like an algebra equation doesn't it? LOL. Seriously though, it is the best thing I ever did.

What is your major?
__________________
“If your expectations aren’t to be the best, then… you know, nobody rises to low expectations.” - Chip Kelly, coach of Oregon Football.
LSL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2011, 10:19 PM   #3
Lolabear
Parent on Board
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: PA
Posts: 123
Rep Power: 78
Lolabear is a name known to allLolabear is a name known to all
Default Re: Please, I need your advice!

I was a single mom while in school and worked as well, so it can be done

leaving them in daycare will be hard at first bc hes a little bit older, so will prob exp some separation anxiety but that is totally normal and i used to work in childcare and most kids are fine as soon as their mom is out if sight all my kids went to daycare when they were really small so they were used to it. but on public transportation keep in mind youre going to be carrying your son, your books/supplies for school, plus anything you might need to take to daycare to replenish supplies for him such as diapers, wipes and formula. most girls i know that took the bus to school used a stroller for their child to make it easier bc then you can put a bag on the stroller and lighten the load youre carrying.

i had state funding for daycare and they allowed me 2 hours per class study time to leave the kds in daycare, if you get that time, USE IT! its so much easier studying when thats all you have to focus on. now that i do online school for my masters its so hard to find time bc the only time theyre at daycare is when im at work.

also find out what resources are out there for you. when i was working on my undergrad degree i got my transportation paid for by the county assistance office, they gave me gas money but for those who rode the bus they paid for their bus ticket every month. i also got free childcare during school bc i wasnt making money at school. they paid for my books. they would give me retail cost for the books and id go online and get them for a fraction of the cost so i got extra money. my school paid my car insurance for me. they have a lot out there but no one will really tell you about it. towards the end of my schooling they got someone in the school as a liason for the CAO and she was a great resource. i am sure things vary greatly from state to state but any little bit helps to take the pressure off.

good luck
Lolabear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2011, 10:26 PM   #4
monquin
Learning to Surf The Board
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 17
Rep Power: 0
monquin is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Please, I need your advice!

Quote:
Originally Posted by LSL View Post
Right up my alley! I started college at the age of 28, when my daughter was 5 years old. I am better with specific questions, but I will try to give you some advice as best as I can.

Public transportation: I rarely ride public transportation because our town is so small that it is not very often it goes by..... so no help there really. Though you know, you can adjust your student loans/grants to include not only daycare but minimum transporation costs -- I think it is up to 1200 a year. In which case, you could take that money and buy a really inexpensive car that will get you through... you might think about it. Time = money. and this would save you some major, major time.

Next, what would you need? I got through undergrad with a spiral notebook for each class to take notes with. I didn't use a laptop..... though by law school, I could not live without my laptop. So, either way, whichever makes you more comfortable. A good, comfortable backpack or rolling backpack is also a must.

The community college that I went to for the first 2 years of college, had a daycare center onsite. I would see if where you are going has the same. When I went to the 4 year college, there were 3 churches within 1 block of the school that all had daycare facilities and afterschool daycare programs.

I won't lie to you. single mom + school = sacrifice + hard work...... Looks like an algebra equation doesn't it? LOL. Seriously though, it is the best thing I ever did.

What is your major?

Wow! Law school? You may be able to help me more than you think...
I'm not considering law school, but I am considering medical school. I've been wishy-washy on that subject because I keep wondering if I am just going to royally destroy my son.
But, I can't get medical school out of my mind. It was my dream before my son and it is still my dream. I love my son so much...How will I be able to fulfill my dream but also make sure my son grows up knowing he is loved when I am going to be SO busy? I won't get into medical school until he is around 5 or 6.
My son is younger than your daughter was, and I am three years younger, but I've heard law school is demanding and I know medical school will be as well.
Right now, I am not certain about what undergraduate major I want. But, I know my ultimate goal is medical school.

How do I go about adjusting my student loans/grants? Right now, I believe I will be accepted for the $5,500 grant to attend this community college. I'm starting out at a community college. Can I still adjust my grant to include transportation, etc?

Did it cost anything to leave your child at a church-ran daycare? What about the after school programs?

---------- Post added at 10:26 PM ---------- Previous post was at 10:21 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lolabear View Post
I was a single mom while in school and worked as well, so it can be done

leaving them in daycare will be hard at first bc hes a little bit older, so will prob exp some separation anxiety but that is totally normal and i used to work in childcare and most kids are fine as soon as their mom is out if sight all my kids went to daycare when they were really small so they were used to it. but on public transportation keep in mind youre going to be carrying your son, your books/supplies for school, plus anything you might need to take to daycare to replenish supplies for him such as diapers, wipes and formula. most girls i know that took the bus to school used a stroller for their child to make it easier bc then you can put a bag on the stroller and lighten the load youre carrying.

i had state funding for daycare and they allowed me 2 hours per class study time to leave the kds in daycare, if you get that time, USE IT! its so much easier studying when thats all you have to focus on. now that i do online school for my masters its so hard to find time bc the only time theyre at daycare is when im at work.

also find out what resources are out there for you. when i was working on my undergrad degree i got my transportation paid for by the county assistance office, they gave me gas money but for those who rode the bus they paid for their bus ticket every month. i also got free childcare during school bc i wasnt making money at school. they paid for my books. they would give me retail cost for the books and id go online and get them for a fraction of the cost so i got extra money. my school paid my car insurance for me. they have a lot out there but no one will really tell you about it. towards the end of my schooling they got someone in the school as a liason for the CAO and she was a great resource. i am sure things vary greatly from state to state but any little bit helps to take the pressure off.

good luck
If I take a stroller with me, how easy will it be to get the stroller on a bus? I've been thinking about using a stroller, but if I have it packed, how will I easily get it onto the bus? Plus, should he be in a car seat on the bus? That would be an added worry of mine. A stroller, car seat, diaper bags, book bag...etc...that's a LOT of stuff! How do people do it??

Would I just go to the Department of Social Services to ask about assistance with transportation? How did you get your school to pay for car insurance??
Do you have any advice on where I should look online, or what office to go in my state, to inquire about all of the assistance that is available to me?
monquin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2011, 10:37 PM   #5
LSL
The blunt one;)


 
LSL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Somewhere on the left coast
Posts: 11,334
Rep Power: 405
LSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support LegendLSL Is a SFV Support Legend
Default Re: Please, I need your advice!

You can adjust your student aid. Go to the financial aid office and see how they calculated the cost. Was it school tuition, fees, and books only? All student aid is figured for a single person with no dependents. Most schools have a budget adjustment form you fill out that you can list all the costs you have, including transportation and childcare. This will increase the amount of money you can get. You may need to take out a few student loans, but don't be afraid of them. They carry low interest rates and if you want to be a doctor -- there is not going to be an issue of repaying when the time comes.

Couple of routes you could take - my cousin is a physician's assistant. Not as much schooling, but the same general responsibilities as a family doctor, but less schooling and you can always go back to school if need be after the little guy is a bit older. However, that being said, don't stunt your dreams.

Here is my story in a nutshell. I have dreamed of being a lawyer since I was 9 years old. Somehow along the way, I got distracted. I got married young in an abusive relationship and worked drudgery jobs. I got a divorce and was thinking about what to do with myself. I had this niggling all this time about law school. One day I realized that when you have a dream like that, you have to try or you will always regret it. So I went for it. Was it tough and demanding? Yes, it really was. Did I have to sacrifice, did my daughter have to? yes. But it was WORTH it! Way worth it!!!!!!! And if it is your dream, you can make it through no matter how demanding it is.

Yes, any daycare is going to cost money. But they were cheaper than the private daycare business. What I ended up doing is placing my child in latchkey when my child was in school. So she stayed at the school before/after and it cost me about 150.00 a month. Then during the summer, they opened the school up and she went there the whole time for summer.... can't remember the cost now. We liked this.

All this to say, follow those dreams. Because even through the hard times, if you really want it, you will feel it is worth it.
__________________
“If your expectations aren’t to be the best, then… you know, nobody rises to low expectations.” - Chip Kelly, coach of Oregon Football.
LSL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-03-2011, 10:51 PM   #6
Lolabear
Parent on Board
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: PA
Posts: 123
Rep Power: 78
Lolabear is a name known to allLolabear is a name known to all
Default Re: Please, I need your advice!

im really not sure how they do it but they never had a car seat with them, i dont think its required on the bus. and they used lightweight umbrella strollers.

I got food stamps so i had a caseworker and found out from them. but i would call and ask, maybe even people in financial aid office might know. i would call some daycares too bc they would know what assistance there is for childcare bc they deal with them and get the payments so they know where they come from. the car insurance is just a thing my school did but it never hurts to ask what is out there.

and yeah i would go to your fin aid office bc you should get more for living off campus, etc. but there is a limit to the amount you can get so you might need to get loans but like LSL said dont be afraid of them. comm college is the way to go. i went to one first and they were fabulous! i actually liked my profs there a lot better, but at a bigger school they have more students and more responsibilities. most of my teachers at comm college only had a masters but all my university profs had their PHD. also a lot more of my comm college teachers were willing to work with me on deadlines or missing class due to kids being sick, etc.

i hear people who are caught up with what school they go to but in the end you still get a degree from the university. ours had a dual admission program since they were both in the same area and all my credits transferred right over it was so easy.
Lolabear is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-19-2011, 11:34 PM   #7
onlymom
I am New
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Louisiana
Posts: 8
Rep Power: 0
onlymom is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Please, I need your advice!

I was not a student when my daughter was young, but I lived abroad and had no car. I did not take the bus, but I had to flag a lot of taxis. I actually moved from a high rise to a townhouse when she grew too large for the front carrier because there was the issue of what to do with her while I unloaded groceries from the taxi and carried them up the steps into the lobby. But the townhouse was way out of the center, and so when we went into town, I had to have everything with me. There was no popping back in at home.

They make strollers that you can easily open and close with one hand and a foot. That will be really, really important if you plan to take one onto public transportation.

My daughter didn't go into daycare until we moved home and she was 20 months. (In-home care was very inexpensive in China.) She got sick a lot that first year. It's the nature of the beast, so be prepared for missing a lot of school. Talk to your professors. They should be understanding.

About the shopping, maybe get a bike with a trailer. But also check into Amazon. My sister and brother-in-law order as much as they can through Amazon, even when my sister was staying at home and had a nanny to help. It's cheaper for things like diapers, formula, toilet paper, etc. They pretty much just buy perishables locally. They subscribe to Amazon Prime, so shipping is free.

Get a daycare closer to home rather than to school. That way, on your days off, you can still drop the baby off so you can get some school work done. I know you'll want to have him home as much as possible, but you'll need the time as well, and you'll be paying for the days anyway, most likely.

Good luck. And don't be afraid to ask for help. People want to help. Think about how you'd be willing to help, or at least make allowances for someone in your situation if they just asked.
onlymom is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
in need of advice...good advice kimjoneli Pregnant and Alone 7 02-05-2015 06:15 AM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:06 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.