Child Care Assistance

Please note:

  • Graduate students do not qualify for a co-pay for the state of Illinois because the state of Illinois does not consider graduate students (even if they earn stipends) as full-time workers.
  • Graduate students do not qualify for funds from the Northwestern flexible spending account
A website devoted to helping people find child care, senior care, pet care, home care, and tutoring.  Northwestern will pay the annual fee for any student who would like to be a member.

Pros: Will help find sitter service
Cons: No financial help

Human Resources
Resource referrals for day care, back-up child care providers, and Northwestern’s nanny share program. They offer advice on paying for child care, including how to apply for grants and scholarships. There are mother’s rooms on both Evanston and Chicago campuses. Kanella Rebapis, the Northwestern representative at Illinois Action for Children, indicated that most graduate students need financial aid for child care.

Pros: Will help find provider
Cons: No direct financial help

Northwestern University Child Care Facility – Chicago Campus
Great facility but above-average costs (see below for weekly rates). Gives parents affiliated with Northwestern priority and a discounted rate by 10%. Costs increase at least 3% each year.

  • Infants: 425.31
  • Toddlers: 355.16
  • 2’s: 329.31
  • Pre-K: 306.69

Pros: Great quality child care
Cons: Not affordable for grad student parents

Harkness House and Infant Welfare Society
Northwestern University has bought spaces for parents affiliated with Northwestern, but there is limited availability.

Pros:  Helps with waiting list issues
Cons: No Financial Help

Their infant program is $350 per week, and they give priority enrollment to Northwestern affiliated parents but there is still a waiting period of at least 6 months. Financial assistance is available to those who make less than $100,000. However, most find their rates are too expensive even with the discount.

Pros: Discounts and wait list priority
Cons:  Not affordable for grad students

Nanny Share Program
Creates a community to help split the cost of an at-home sitter. It costs around $15 per week.

Pros: Northwestern orientated, financial help
Cons: Not a day care facility

Family Care Connections
Community program that consists of a group of people who run small day care centers out of their home. These centers are held to a standard of care. Costs $250-$280 per week.

Pros: Standard of care, community oriented
Cons: Not affordable, still above average costs


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