ITS NOT AGAINST UNIVERSTY RULES BUT THESE ARE CHALENGES BEHIND SUCH DECISION.
By David Deus
When you’re a round at some of the areas of University of Dar es Salaam despite of seeing and meet with students who sit at Vimbwetani discussing or perusing their books also you may enjoy the wonderfully academic buildings surrounded by conducive with greenbelt environment. It just normal to meet a several groups of student carrying back their bags or laptops in their hands.
Due to being a higher institution its very rarely to witness the one who is not matured enough (18-) biologically as well as mentally, in this regard it is very easy to meet or sit in one class with someone who is pregnant since its university and being pregnant is not a case as in other levels of education like primary and ordinary level.
Situation of studying and discussing beside a pregnant woman is not a sin at all, as I can only remember when I was in primary level only teachers were allowed, and this shows that higher level of education accumulate people who are matured enough with their dreams, decision, plans also personal life.
However, it might be a big mistake when someone think about them in a negative way as you can hear some accusing rumours that it’s just like doing two things at the same time or advising that if someone want to study or giving birth should concentrate on one thing rather than doing both at the same time, and forgetting that others joins university while married, though not all the time all students judge them.
But no one has a guarantee of interfering others’ decision unless that decision collide with institution rules and regulation or endanger others rights. It’s true that anyone who in that situation needs special care and attention due to some biological issues and that’s not intend to discriminate them.
There is a vital question on what are the challenges and difficulties which they do face as the student at the same time moms to be. For the side of Mama Elvin explained that, to be a pregnant student it’s not a problem but a challenge which she experience is vastness of campus and scatteredness of class venues as well as schools and colleges like SJMC and CoICT,
Also added that sometime in shuttle buses it’s difficult to get a seat since always students scramble each other at the buss doors for getting seats something which is very difficult for student who are in that situation to get the seat, though there some of the student who are not ready to have a seat while the girl with that condition stands up.
Jane Ibrahim, a second-year student at (UDSM) when she was having some conversation with daily newspaper The Citizen, confirmed poor performance in her studies due to some challenges she faces after becoming pregnant.
For the side of Schola said that,’’ the challenges are many. It’s not easy being young and pregnant, too much pressure from the world. Biologically, the hormonal changes can make you hate yourself for instance gaining too much weight as the pregnancy grows, tiredness every time, vomiting, dizziness etc.
Other time your clothes become unfitted and you need new clothes, it’s hard when you do not have enough balance to buy them. Dealing with judgments from the society of getting pregnant without being married, one has to be strong to handle that ‘’.
Does the university infrastructure supportive and friendly to the student who are pregnant? Schola explains, ‘’what I can say is, in case of infrastructures it depends on the college that you are studying at, the UDSM is a very large university you might find yourself walking to different classes of which moving from one place to another is hard. For instance, having a lecture at Yombo 4 and followed by a seminar hour at CoET. You have to walk all that distance. From hostel resident to cafeteria to buy food (you might be feeling hungry all the time when pregnant). And you have to bear all these challenges’’.
But also, the university regulations allows a girl who is pregnant to have two weeks maternity leave which is good, one can postpone her studies, to have special exams and tests, but you just need to make sure if you decide to study while pregnant you finish all the assignments, do exams and tests because some Lecturers might not be too friendly when you don’t complete their tasks simply because you are pregnant.
But what are the experience and comments of those who have been studying with students of a such situation? Baraka Ngofira (UDSM graduator) said that when he was studying with pregnant student there was no any problem he observed since they were participating and doing all their duties like other students.
But to Hosea Revocatus second year UDSM student said that there were some difficulties especially at a time you want to discuss or to do presentation may find that the one is not feeling good, sometime they do not attend at all hence to participate poorly.
Meanwhile decision will always belongs to the one who either wants to give birth or not while in university. Since when adult one make a decision and some choices in their life no one can turn them back because are the ones who are answerable and responsible enough to such kind of decision and not anybody else.