Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Quiet spaces now available in seven university locations

In this way UniTrento meets students and staff needs: a unique case in Italy for the number of spaces and their purpose

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The University of Trento now has, in seven locations, quiet spaces for students and staff to use for health requirements or breastfeeding.

In each of these locations, visitors are welcomed by a sign that explains the “Uni&Me” initiative and gives directions to the specially-equipped areas. Once you get there, you will notice the nautilus shell on the door, whose geometric structure with spiralling chambers is used as a metaphor for protection, shelter, care and privacy. The image of the nautilus adorns a wall in the room, equipped with an armchair and a bed.

Different University branches worked together on this project, which was supervised by the Equality and Diversity Unit and carried out by the Architecture services of the Estates directorate with support from the Department of Civil, environmental and mechanical engineering.

The quiet spaces were presented to the press this morning.

Despite the many national and European recommendations, breastfeeding spaces are not very common in Italian universities. The University of Bologna was among the first to provide this type of facility with "Baby Pit Stop", while the University of Salerno opened "Baby Point", a childcare area.

The University of Trento stands out because it created seven quiet spaces in as many different locations and because they serve multiple purposes, so that staff and students who work and study in these places can use them for breastfeeding or for health requirements.

Quiet spaces serve the University departments and centres on the hill of Trento, in Trento and in Rovereto, and are located at the Mesiano Campus, at the Ferrari 1 Building, at the Paolo Prodi Building, at the Law Building, at the Central University Library and, in Rovereto, at Palazzo Fedrigotti and Palazzo Piomarta.

The initiative, which highlights that the University cares about equality and diversity policies, was included in the Plan for positive action 2014-2016 and developed in the 2017-2019 plan as a strategic project, with others that call for innovative actions to provide better accommodation and enhance University life.

The presentation was attended by Paolo Collini (rector of the University of Trento), Barbara Poggio (prorector for equality and diversity policies), Giovanna Massari (associate professor at the Department of Civil, environmental and mechanical engineering and design supervisor) and Michela Favero (head of architecture services at the Estates directorate).
Patrizia Tomio (head of the Equality and Diversity Unit), Sara Zoppi (author of the design), Elisa Baratto (Human Resources and Organization Directorate) and Pierluigi Endrizzi (Estates directorate and site manager) were also present.

More details in the press release