Imagine a student who is insulin-dependent diabetic looking for a private place to take their injection. Or, perhaps a transgender individual desiring to be comfortable walking into a bathroom without the anxiety of making others feel uncomfortable.
Maybe there is a student who is a victim of violence who finds it hard to make themselves vulnerable in a public restroom situation and prefers a solid door between them and others. Or, perhaps there is a new mother who has to separate from her baby in order to attend classes or work on campus, and they are looking for a private place to pump.
Kirkwood Community College Facilities is addressing these and countless other scenarios through additions into their renovation and new construction projects across campus.
On the third floor of Cedar Hall, near where the library renovations are taking place, students will find some unique rooms for the main campus of Kirkwood – a room temporarily dedicated as a lactation room and two single-user bathrooms.
Monica Davis, senior director of Facilities at Kirkwood, said, “We are renovating the existing lactation room to make it slightly larger and a little more comfortable with some upgrades. That will be on second floor currently outside of the temporary counseling area.”
It is projected that renovation will be completed sometime after the first of the year.
In regard to the single user bathrooms being added on campus, Davis added, “That is definitely something in all projects going forward that we are trying to do more of. So, for example, the Iowa Hall renovation, there are a total of seven single use restrooms that we are adding in that facility. There is also one lactation room added in that project as well. Just a lot more availability for those types of services.”
Eventually, the temporary lactation room on third floor Cedar Hall will be closed but not before the newly renovated, permanently-dedicated room on second floor is completed. There will be an alert in the “Have You Heard” to let the campus know when that transition will take place.
JoEllen is a non-traditional student, wife and mother – learning new skills in the Digital Arts program at Kirkwood. She is a writer, photographer, digital artist and lover of life.