- Mom, PhD
Orientation: Babies at Berkeley
I made a bold choice for my first day as a PhD student at UC Berkeley: I brought my baby to orientation. I wanted to communicate that my family will be a big part of my identity as a student; family first, always. And I wanted my son to experience UC Berkeley and witness the start of an education. It's an exciting time!
And off we went! But the day was very long. We were there for eight hours. I packed his lunch and fed him while I took a few bites of the wrap that was catered for students. I had fellow students help haul the stroller up flights of stairs as I tried to attend some of the workshops offered. We went to one academic writing workshop where we stayed outside of the theater, close enough that I could vaguely listen to what they were saying but far enough that I could bolt because nap time crankiness is no joke.
That being said, the staff and faculty running the workshops were very accommodating to a mom and baby duo! This is Berkeley, after all. The day was hard at some points; it was awkward and uncomfortable at some points; it was exciting and challenging at other points. Overall, it was a great day and a good start to my graduate career at UCB.