OREM — “As a breastfeeding mom now, it’s a once in a lifetime thing,” says new mom Whitney Sanchez. As the marketing manager at the women’s success center, putting Mamava lactation pods on the Utah Valley University campus was a project that hit close to home for Whitney.
In an effort to be a more inclusive campus, UVU is currently piloting five lactation pods in various locations around the university. The pods are the size of a small room and include tissues, wipes, and a fan that turns on when the door is locked. They are run soley through an app, providing moms a convenient way to find a space to nurse their baby.
When reflecting on her own experiences nursing her children in bathroom stalls, UVU Dean of Students Alexis Palmer said, “That’s not the most appropriate place for someone to nourish their child, on a toilet seat.” The Mamava pods are to provide a clean, safe space for nursing moms.
The lactation pods are only being piloted right now, but people at UVU have reacted well to them.
“We’ve had a lot of positive feedback from students, faculty, and staff who are really appreciative of what we’ve been able to do.” says Palmer.
The university hopes to continue to integrate these pods into campus and bring in more in the future. “We would love to have one in every building. That includes west campus which is across the freeway, our Wasatch campus which is up in the Heber area, and our Thanksgiving point location,” continues Palmer.
On the topic of nursing mothers on a university campus, Sanchez remarks, “This is a part of inclusion…making a place for moms to have the support that they need, because it’s a very real need. We want them integrated into our inclusive campus community.”