RVCC Lactation Room

River Valley Community College Helps Support Students who Face Common Challenges Outside the Classroom

River Valley Community College Helps Support Students who Face Common Challenges Outside the Classroom


Claremont, NH – River Valley Community College (RVCC) is taking a new approach to supporting its student population outside the classroom. RVCC has announced the launch of three wraparound services designed to help ease the challenges some students face in their personal lives that can often become a distraction or impediment on their educational journey. These initiatives include helping students combat food insecurity, increasing public transportation options to improve access to campus, and enhancing privacy accommodations for new mothers.  

“We’ve taken a hard look at the obstacles many of our students face while pursuing their dream of a college degree, and we’ve learned some incredibly powerful things,” said Jenn Cournoyer, vice president of student affairs at RVCC. “One in three of our students struggle with food insecurity.  There is a significant need for more public transportation options for students to get to campus.  And our students who are new mothers really struggled to find an adequate and private place to attend to their personal needs. As a community college, we felt a strong sense of responsibility to address these issues with urgency to give our students the best possible chance to succeed.”

To combat the issue around food insecurity, RVCC’s student government worked in tandem with a variety of community partners to create a “pop-up pantry” utilizing food donations from local organizations including Price Chopper, C & S Wholesale Grocers, Walmart, Monadnock Food Co-Op and Concord Food Co-Op. The college has also become an official agency of the New Hampshire Food Bank which ensures they receive regular food deliveries for students in need.

To address the challenge of students having limited public transportation options, RVCC has partnered with the transportation program of Southwestern Community Services to add RVCC as an official stop on its bus route this coming spring. There will be both a morning and evening stop, and plans are underway to implement a student riding pass program in the future.

Finally, with a sponsorship from Loves Bedding & Furniture, RVCC will rebuild its existing lactation room to provide greater comfort for new mothers. In addition to adding new furniture, they will update the technology and appliances in the room, as well as offer enhanced privacy features for students.  RVCC was also awarded a grant from Keene State College to enhance the lactation room even more, by providing baby bottles, wipes, sanitizers and other goods, along with a hospital grade breast pump.

“We are tremendously grateful to all of our community partners who have shown such amazing support to the students of RVCC,” said Jenny Albee, president of RVCC’s Student Government Association. “The best way for our students to thrive is to be able to have the opportunity to learn free of the stressful distractions that can be so difficult to manage. Having the opportunity to help with some of these programs has been incredibly rewarding and meaningful.”

To learn more about how RVCC enhances student life, visit rivervalley.edu.



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