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The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) is helping institutions of higher education, including St. Cloud State, to start new or support existing student-parent help centers. MDH received funding for the grants from the Office of Adolescent Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

MDH is distributing about $2.7 million in federal grant awards to 11 institutions for centers that address the health and education needs of young parents and pregnant students who attend college.

The Student Parent Support Initiative grants range from $55,000 to $280,000.

"Student-parent help centers provide the support that pregnant or parenting students need at a crucial time in their lives as they are building their future through post-secondary education,"  said Ed Ehlinger, MDH commissioner.

Student-parent help centers may provide referrals to needed health and social services, parenting education and outreach to pregnant or parenting high school students.