March 25, 2024

Conversation on child care for student parents is Tuesday

march-26-cou-final-flyer-sm.jpg“Childcare as a Human Right,” a Conversation of Understanding on Tuesday, March 26, will center on why child care should be recognized as a fundamental human right, particularly within higher education and society. 

The discussion from parents and child care experts will focus on the challenges that many students face in trying to earn a college degree while balancing the demands of academics and family responsibilities. Countless promising students are forced to compromise their academic ambitions due to a lack of accessible and affordable child care options. Faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members are invited to join the live virtual discussion at noon. 

The meeting will be available on the SIU System’s YouTube channel

A Q&A session will follow during which participants can use the YouTube comment section. Questions may be submitted before or during the event by email to

Participants will include:

  • Dan Mahony, SIU System president.
  • Sheila Caldwell, SIU System vice president for antiracism, diversity, equity and inclusion, and chief diversity officer, who will facilitate the conversation.
  • Rebecca Dabbs-MacLean, director, SIU Edwardsville Early Childhood Center.
  • Sherrica Davis-Hunt, SIU Foundation, assistant vice chancellor for diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Karen Samuel, director, SIU Carbondale Rainbow’s End Child Development Center.
  • Leslie Borrell, CEO and founder, Carefully App.
  • Carlee Caspari, child care resource and referral provider services supervisor, Brightpoint.
  • Genevieve Sheridan, nonprofit executive and founder, Childcare for Regenerative Economies. 

The Conversation of Understanding series began in June 2020 for students, alumni, faculty, staff and community members to share their experiences and thoughts on a variety of themes related to diversity, equity and inclusion. This is the fifth session for the 2023-24 academic year.  

The SIU System President’s Office and the SIU System Diversity Advisory Council are discussion sponsors.