|Childbirth Policies at Various UniversitiesFamily Medical and Leave Act The University of Connecticut has a set of guidelines written by the Graduate School for a case-by-case family leave accommodation. Below are links to the policies for other universities across the country.
Eligibility: Female student giving birth, male or female co-parent who is the primary care-giver of a newly born baby, or a male or female student adopting a child. Limit of one parent per family. Length of Leave: Up to 8 weeks, duration to be determined in consultation with the advisor and DGS.
Financial Terms: Fellowship stipend or TA stipend continues and is funded by the Graduate School. For TAs, the Graduate School will aid in funding replacement teaching, if necessary. university link
Dartmouth College Eligibility: Full-time stipend-supported graduate students.
Length of leave: 12 weeks paid maternity or paternity leave.
Funding: The Graduate Studies Office provides 6 weeks of support & the student’s department provides 6 weeks of support. If the department is unable to provide the matching funds, the GSO provides all 12 weeks of support. If both parents are graduate students, they split the support. During this period of accomodation, the student continues to be enrolled and receives full stipend support and health benefits. In addition, a one-term extension will be gratned to complete their degree. university link
Eligibility: Students who hold a Student Academic Appointment (SAA) of at least 37.5 FTE and who have completed at least 12 credit hours of graduate work in the College. This includes teaching assistants, research assistants, associate instructors, and faculty assistants who receive University-paid health benefits. Eligible graduate students may take paid family or medical leaves in up to two terms of every five calendar years, but must be enrolled full-time for at least one semester between leaves.
Length of leave: Up to six-weeks of paid Family & Medical Leave. The College Graduate Student Leave of Absence may provide up to two years of relief from coursework and degree milestones. university link
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) university link university-physics link
Eligibility: Female graduate students before and soon after childbirth.
Length of leave: A student may choose a leave period of one month, one and a half months, or two months. The length of the accommodation period will normally be decided in consultation with the Dean for Graduate Education. The MIT Physics Department funds a third month of paid maternity leave for female physics graduate students, an extension of the two months of childbirth accommodation provided for female graduate students Institute-wide (see below).
Funding: Students supported by an RA or TA appointment will receive a stipend that is paid from the MIT Childbirth Accommodation Fund. Students who are not supported by RA or TA assignments, for example students on a fellowship, may petition to take advantage of a Childbirth Accommodation period, but are not entitled to tuition or stipend funding from the Childbirth Accommodation Fund. Funding to support these leaves will be funded through a combination of funding from the Department and Dean for the School of Science.
Northwestern University Eligibility: Women graduate students supported by fellowships, teaching assistantships, research assistantships, and/or receiving a tuition scholarship at the time of childbirth will be excused from regular teaching or research duties for a period of six weeks during which they will continue to receive support.
Length of leave: Six-weeks of paid leave.
Funding: Students receiving a financial accommodation must maintain their regular coursework and/or research registrations during this period. The funding source for the student’s aid at the time of childbirth (University, foundation, governmental) will be responsible to fund the student during the 6-week accommodation period. university link
Princeton University university link
Eligibility: Female graduate students.
Length of leave: For graduate students who give birth, 12 weeks of maternity leave are provided during which the birth mother continues to receive financial support, and teaching and other academic obligations are suspended. They also provide relief to graduate degree candidates faced with the additional time demands of being the primary caregiver for an infant during that critical first year of life. This program also provides taxable grants, based on total, annual household income, to eligible graduate degree candidates with pre-kindergarten children to help them meet the cost of child care. The grants are portable and can be used to pay for a wide range of possible arrangements from in-home care to licensed day care centers. The maximum grant for one eligible child is $5,000; an additional grant of up to $5000 is available for a second eligible child. To be eligible, the full-time student may be unmarried or may have a spouse or partner who is employed at least 50% time, is a full-time student matriculated in a degree or certificate program, or is eligible for and seeking at least 50% employment. Backup Care Advantage Program When a disruption in normal caregiving arrangements interferes with their work or study obligations, graduate degree candidates responsible for the care of a child, adult or elder can pay $4 per hour for in-home care, for up to 3 dependents, or $2 per hour per dependent for center-based care. The person requiring the care does not have to reside with the graduate student.
Texas A&M University Eligibility: All women graduate students anticipating or experiencing a birth who are registered, matriculated students.
Length of Leave: 6 weeks paid with “modified RA/TA duties”, plus additional academic milestone extensions. university link
University of California System All UC postdocs are part of the UAW Local 5810 union, and relevant leave policies are specified in Articles 12, 17, and 22 of “The Agreement Between The University of California and the International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW)” (university link). Our understanding of Article 12 is that a UC postdoc may take 12 weeks of unpaid leave, as long as he/she has been a UC postdoc for 12 months. The section in Article 12 on “Parental Leave” states that a UC postdoc may take 12 weeks off to take care of a newborn so long as he/she identifies the University 30 days in advance. UC postdoc mothers can take 4 months of unpaid “Pregnancy Disability Leave”. The combination of pregnancy leave and parental leave cannot exceed 7 months in a calendar year. UC postdocs also have 24 days of paid “Personal Time Off” (as specified in Article 17, this must be requested and approved in advance) and 12 days of paid sick leave (as specified in Article 22 of the contract) each year. The paid sick leave days accrue from year to year, but the personal time off does not. University of California-Berkeley university link
Childbirth Accommodations In addition to being eligible for extensions of time under the Graduate Council’s Parental Accommodations provision, research doctoral students who are women anticipating childbirth and are supported by graduate student instructor (GSI) and/or research (GSR) appointments will be excused from regular duties for a period of six weeks without loss of financial support (a longer period may be granted in the case of exceptional medical circumstances experienced by the mother or child before or after birth). They may choose to continue to work in some modified capacity during this six-week period but are not be required to do so. Support for a GSI or GSR replacement during the six-week period may be charged by the academic unit to the campus’s Childbirth Accommodation Fund upon Graduate Division approval. Unless a semester-long period is approved due to very exceptional circumstances, the replacement GSI or GSR would not qualify for fee remissions since the appointment is limited to six weeks.
University of Minnesota Eligibility: Female and male graduate assistants or postdoctoral associate employees
Length of leave: Females: up to six weeks leave with pay related to the birth of a child and up to two weeks paid leave related to the adoption of a child. Males: up to two weeks leave with pay related to the birth or adoption of a child. Parental leave provisions as provided under this policy are applicable to registered same-sex domestic partner relationships. university link
University of Wisconsin – Madison A departmental policy enacted in 2010 provides twelve weeks paid parental leave to Research Assistants.