Following the historic decision of the Supreme Court that overturned Roe v. Wade last year, the Catholic University of America started the Guadalupe Project to support campus students facing unplanned pregnancies and also mothers and children who are part of the institution’s faculty and staff. The project analyzed the requirements of mothers on campus and declared an augmentation of resources last fall that included 12 weeks of paid maternity leave for employees, a babysitting program run by students, lactation rooms, free baby products on campus as well as pregnancy-resource materials across the campus. Following the Dobbs decision, the university started to focus on promoting pro-life and pro-family ethics on campus.
National Catholic Register reports:
WASHINGTON — The Catholic University of America (CUA) saw the Supreme Court’s historic overturning of Roe v. Wade last June as a call to self-examination regarding how the university could better accompany and support students facing unplanned pregnancies as well as mothers and children among the university’s faculty and staff.
“This is a historic watershed moment in the life of this country,” Jennie Lichter, deputy general counsel at CUA told the Register of the Dobbs decision.
Lichter said the conversations that followed that decision, led by the university’s president at the time, John Garvey, and later embraced by its new president, Peter Kilpatrick, were focused on seeing how they could tangibly augment the existing pro-life and pro-family culture on their campus. They examined ways to improve “our own policy, the campus culture and physical space, to make sure we’re taking care of our own people, moms and babies especially, but, dads too, and families,” she said. “How do we encourage family life as a university?”
Creating an Environment of Support
What came out of those conversations was the ongoing Guadalupe Project, which assessed the potential needs of moms on campus and announced an expansion of resources last fall, including a student-run babysitting program, 12 weeks paid maternity leave for faculty and staff, free baby items on campus, lactation rooms, and campus-wide pregnancy-resource materials.
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