Maastricht University is proud to be a family-friendly university, and recognises that work and study is only one aspect of our students’ and employees’ lives. Within the framework of the UM Cares project, we therefore implement measures to help the members of our UM community to combine work/study with their caring responsibilities.
The D&I Office works closely together with the HR department and the Student Services Centre to achieve the UM Cares objectives. Together, we want to ensure the sustainable employability of our employees and successful study completion for our students.
PAC network: UM network for parents and carers
In the framework of the UM Cares project, UM has established a network for parents and carers. This network serves two main purposes: firstly, it has a peer support function for students and staff with caring responsibilities to connect and share experiences, and secondly it serves as a sounding board for input and feedback for the UM Cares project and for informing the UM community about the project progress.
The network is open for all students and staff with caring responsibilities to join.
Email us from your UM account to register for the network by clicking the green button.
Our vision: Maastricht University – a family-friendly university
At Maastricht University, we recognise that work and study are only one aspect of our students’ and employees’ lives. Combining work and private life can be a delicate balancing act, particularly when you are caring for a loved one – a parent, child, sibling, grandparent, friend, or neighbour. As a family-friendly university, UM wants to facilitate the combination of caring responsibilities and work or study. We recognise that these responsibilities are contingent and that flexibility is crucial. Ultimately, our aim is to ensure sustainable employability and successful study completion.
At UM, we strive to be a caring university by adhering to the following principles:
- Reacting promptly to requests for support
- Treating all such requests confidentially
- Aiming for consistency of treatment in similar cases
- Helping employees and students to recognise if they are carers. Caring tasks are multi-faceted and may include: helping a loved one with personal care, medication or household tasks; providing emotional support; accompanying a loved one to medical appointments
- Raising awareness of care topics
Our actions: UM Cares objectives
In the framework of the UM Cares project, we have committed ourselves to achieving a number of objectives:
- Identifying and closing gaps in the rules and regulations affecting students with caring responsibilities
- Informing the members of the UM community about care topics and their rights in this regard
- Ensuring adequate facilities are available, both within UM (e.g. resting and lactation rooms) and outside (e.g. technical facilities for working from home where necessary)
- Integrating good practice around care topics into our leadership concept and management practice
- Examining of our HR instruments to see if these are adaptable for employees with caring responsibilities (including e.g. dual careers policy for spouses/partners)
- Developing proposals for financial support for employees and students with caring responsibilities
- Examining possibilities with regard to childcare
- Collecting regular feedback from the UM community on working/studying while caring
- Organising events around care topics
With two young children in Maastricht and family members living abroad, the mission of UMCares is close to my heart. I am always keen on input and ideas from members of the UM community, so if you have something to share please get in touch!
The UM Cares project was coordinated by Natasja Reslow and the D&I Office. She has been teaching, conducting research, and managing projects at Maastricht University since 2009, first as a Ph.D. candidate at FASoS and later as Assistant Professor at the Law Faculty. She has been working at the Diversity Office from 1 April 2019 until 1 March 2021.