The newly remodeled Northwest Vista College library now houses spaces dedicated students who are parents with the Family Study Room and the Vista Veterans Library.

According to a news release, these rooms allow for students to study and socialize with other students who have similar personal experiences, responsibilities and needs.

Representatives of the far west San Antonio community college said the latest addition is the Family Study Room, which was designed for students with young children. It contains a quiet, private area for students to study while caring for their children.

NVC librarian Angela Bilbe, who was a parent in college, said she is happy to see the library provide an exclusive space for students who are caring for a young child.

The Family Study Room also has an adult-sized table, a child-sized Lego table, toys, puzzles, games, space for strollers and baby carrier, and age-appropriate books curated by the NVC librarians, the release states.

NVC representatives said offering on-campus amenities for students who are parents is vital because recent data shows that the overall number of NVC students who are parents has increase from 11.3% in fall 2020 to 15.7% in spring 2023.

“There is a stigma when it comes to young parents bringing children to the library,” Bilbe said in a statement.. “We want to create a safe, welcoming space for all students. I want parents to feel encouraged to study in the library, and to empower parents to utilize the library resources and show their children the wonders of learning and the library.”

In mid-March, the NVC’s library opened the Vista Veterans Library to give veterans with a quiet place to study and collaborate with other veterans. It also houses a collection of materials appropriate to veteran subjects.

The release states that, during the 2022-23 academic year, nearly 1,500 students who are veterans or veteran dependents received services at the NVC Veterans Center, which helps veterans, active-duty military members, and dependent students get information about eligibility, educational benefits coverage, courses certification and submissions to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

NVC librarian Rosemarie Rodriguez said the Vista Veterans Library offers a safe space for multigenerational veterans to gather and find the camaraderie and fellowship that they were accustomed to while serving in the military.

The veterans writing program, Rodriguez said, uses self-published magazines with small circulations through which student veterans can share stories about their experiences before, during and post-military.

Both areas are located in the library, on the first floor of the Redbud Learning Center, the release states. The rooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis, and the Family Study Room will prioritize users accompanied by children.

NVC President Amy Bosley said is important to provide dedicated spaces for two growing segments of the student population.

“Northwest Vista College is committed to providing support and resources to all students for their academic, career and lifelong success,” she said in a statement.