August 23, 2022

Lucia A. Silecchia, Catholic Law Professor and Director of Faculty Research, recently published an opinion piece in Newsweek. In the article, “In the Post-Dobbs Era, Universities Must Step Up to Support Pregnant Students,” Silecchia discusses how universities can and must directly address student concerns about pregnancy's impact on their academic and professional futures in the post-Dobbs era.

Date: August 23, 2022
By: Lucia A. Silecchia
Opinion: In the Post-Dobbs Era, Universities Must Step Up to Support Pregnant Students

The Education Amendment Act of 1972 prohibits pregnancy-based discrimination. But merely complying with law does not create a life-affirming, woman-affirming culture. Any university committed to building this culture must do far more.

Orientation programs, websites, and university information channels can provide clear guidance on where to find pregnancy support—support that will not pressure students to abort their children. University faculty might teach programs on household finances, legal concerns, and infant care for students anticipating parenthood and overwhelmed by the unknown. Counselors should be readily available to assist with the complex stress of an unanticipated pregnancy. If the university has campus ministers, they should walk closely with students through this profound time. Organizations for student parents may help pregnant students feel less alone.

Click here to read Professor Lucia Silecchia’s full comments.