Ameya Warde had been a stay-at-home mom before, so when she transferred to Ohio State to finish her degree in 2011 with her then husband and one-year-old son, Killian Schrimpf, she said it was important for her to find a safe place for her son to receive an age-appropriate education and thrive while she continued her own education.
OSU’s Child Care Program has allowed Warde to do just that.
The program is a resource for OSU students, staff and faculty with children while they attend classes and or work at the university.
Donald Fuzer, program director of the child-care program, said that the children’s curriculum is based on each child’s interest.
The program website states, “Early childhood classroom teams that include teachers, assistant teachers and teaching aides working together to provide a secure, nurturing and challenging classroom environment that enhances children’s growth and development.”
The child-care centers offer curriculum to enhance youth development that include musical activities, language lessons, creative arts, math, outdoor activities and more, according to the child-care program’s website.
The program serves more than 400 families in OSU’s community. Children in the infant, toddler, preschool and kindergarten age ranges are eligible to enroll.
“There was a lot of research projects that went on in the classroom, and I actually really liked that. I liked knowing that all of the teachers were up to date with all the research on little kids and education,” Warde said. “I really was able to trust them.”
The program has two locations, both off-campus: one on Ackerman Road and the other at Buckeye Village, OSU’s student family housing complex.
“You definitely couldn’t beat the location. Having a daycare center in the middle of the (Buckeye Village) family housing was so helpful. Most of that time I didn’t drive,” Warde said.
Warde said financial assistance helped her pay for child care while finishing her degree.
“I was a mom going to school, and my husband at the time wasn’t making much money, so for most of that time I was a single mom,” Warde said. “The state of Ohio gave me daycare assistance, which I am forever grateful for. It was either free or we had a small co-pay.”
Warde graduated from OSU with a bachelor of science in city and regional planning in 2013. She is now co-parenting with her ex-husband who still lives in Columbus, with Killian, while she is seeking employment in Boulder, Colorado.
“I loved how every week they’d send us a bunch of pictures of the kids. I still look back at all of these cute pictures of his little daycare days,” Warde said. “They did more than just kindercare … We were very happy with how (the) Buckeye Village (facility) engaged his mind. They weren’t just babysitters.”