Families - Spouses, Partners & Children
If you have a spouse, partner, child/children, or other family members, we know that their happiness is important to your success. We want them to feel welcome and to become part of our community. There are many ways for them to get involved at Yale and access local resources. You will find lots of useful information below:
- Health Care at Yale Health
- McDougal Center Facilities and Events
- Spouses & Partners
Yale-affiliated housing is available for students with spouses, partners and/or children. Here are two options:
- On-campus graduate apartments are available, but supply is limited. Apply as soon as the housing application is available in mid-April.
- Elm Campus Partners manages many university-owned rental units that are suitable for couples and families with children. Apply in March-April.
Non-Yale, Off-Campus Housing
• There are many non-Yale-owned apartments for rent in walking distance of campus. The Yale Off-Campus Living Office, 420 Temple Street, has an apartment search website and resources to help you find a place to call home. firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Yale Health is the comprehensive, on-campus, full-service health center and health care plan for students and their family members. See Health & Wellness for more information about services, including support for Ph.D. students with legally married spouses or dependent children (up to age 26).
- Yale Health members have access to primary care, mental health, 24-hour acute care, seven days per week, and worldwide emergency coverage. Yale Health offers excellent ob-gyn, pre-natal, labor and delivery care. Pediatric triage nurses are available to speak with you by phone about any health concerns regarding your child.
- Optional Graduate and Professional Student Dental and Vision Care Plans are available for students and their spouses and partners and/or children. Enroll online by September 15, annually. Coverage begins October 1. Services are provided outside of Yale Health, and GSAS Health Award Fellowships do not pay for this coverage.
Spouses, partners, and children of GSAS students are welcome to use common spaces and facilities at the Graduate Student Life (GSL) Office at the McDougal Graduate Center. We have a lactation room, baby changing tables, stroller-friendly access via elevator, and high chairs/booster seats.
The McDougal GSL Fellows host many events for spouses/partners and families with children to enjoy throughout the year. McDougal Family Fellows plan monthly family activities and outings, such as farm trips, holiday parties, and arts programs, as well spouse date nights and arts programs. Check Yale Connect and the weekly McDougal GSL email for a full listing of events.
Students and spouses/partners can socialize at McDougal GSL monthly First Friday at Five (FFF) Social Hours, for those 21 and over with photo ID. For legal and safety reasons, no one under 21 is allowed at FFF. Bring your own mug (BYOM). We don’t supply cups or glasses!
We hope to see you all at many of the McDougal GSL activities and events!
Yale University recognizes marriages as well as civil unions and legal partnerships created by states.
If you are a legally married spouse or civil union partner of a Yale graduate student, you are eligible for a Yale Sponsored Identity (SI) Access Card ID Badge. Benefits of having a Yale-issued ID include:
- a Yale photo ID, which grants access to certain Yale buildings (apartments, student centers, etc);
- fitness facilities and classes at the Yale’s Payne Whitney Gymnasium, for a fee;
- the Yale Library;
- free admission to the Peabody Museum of Natural History;
- discounted tickets to the Yale Repertory Theatre;
- a Yale NetID.
How to Request a Yale Access ID for a Spouse
- You and your spouse must go in person, together, to the University Registrar’s Office, 246 Church Street, with the student’s Yale ID, the spouse’s government-issued photo identification (e.g., driver’s license, passport), and your marriage certificate.
- The Registrar’s Office will notify the Yale student within 3-4 business days of your application.
- Once you receive notification from the Registrar’s Office that your application has been approved, go to the Yale ID Center at 57 Lock Street (next to Yale Health) with a valid ID to receive your Spouse Access ID Card.
- Once you have an Access Card and NetID, you may submit a request for ID card access to McDougal Center facilities and online resources in Yale Connect.
Spouses and partners may audit or sit in on Yale College and GSAS classes without charge. If you want to receive a transcript for any course you audit, you must complete an application for non-degree study and, if admitted, pay tuition fees.
- Audit Yale College classes (undergraduate)
- Audit Graduate School classes. Ask permission from the instructor and the relevant academic department and request “guest access” to Canvas, the online course information system.
- The Yale Human Resources application system is the place to go if you are looking for a job at Yale. Each September, McDougal Graduate Student Life and Human Resources co-host a welcome and information session on Yale job searching for new graduate student spouses/partners. Register online starting in mid-August at McDougal Eventbrite.
- New Haven Works offers a jobs pipeline program if you live in the City of New Haven. Registering with New Haven Works provides special access to area employers, including Yale.
Yale offers some resources, but does not issue Yale ID Access Cards, to non-married domestic partners of graduate and professional students. Contact the offices below to access their services:
- Yale Shuttle Bus: You are welcome to use the free Yale shuttle system. When calling for a nighttime shuttle/safe ride, you will be asked for the student’s Yale NetID.
- Yale Gym Membership: Unmarried partners can purchase a Yale Gym membership at the same rate as student spouses. You and your spouse must visit the membership office, show the Yale student’s ID card and documentation of shared residence.
- Yale Athletic events: You can buy discount student guest tickets for football, hockey and other home sports events.
- Library Borrowing Privileges for Domestic Partners.
As a Ph.D student, a new birth or adoption may qualify you for the Parental Relief Policy. This policy stops your academic clock, offering you one fully-funded extra term in graduate school per child birth or adoption event. See the policy for more details. While on parental relief as a Ph.D. student, you can remain registered but will be relieved of academic duties (research, teaching, coursework) for eight to sixteen weeks. Your stipend and health coverage will continue. Contact the Associate Dean Richard Sleight to discuss parental relief well in advance of birth or adoption.
Alternatively, a separate “Parental Leave” is also available to Masters and Ph.D students. This is a leave of absence for parental reasons, it does not convey the same privileges as parental relief.
If you are a Ph.D. student with a child or children, the Graduate School is pleased to provide an additional financial subsidy to assist you with family expenses. For more information, read about our Ph.D. Student Family Support Policy.
Yale and the New Haven area offer a wide range of child care options: several Yale-affiliated centers, local daycares, public preschools, independent nursery schools, licensed family care providers, and in-home care. High-quality child care, especially for infants, can be expensive. However, some facilities offer sliding fee scales or scholarships based upon family income. Spaces in local and Yale-affiliated daycare centers fill quickly, especially for infants, so apply as early as possible.
- Yale WorkLife and Childcare has information on local child care options, as well as summer camps and private schools.
- Yale Babysitting Service can help you to find a Yale student to care for your child on an occasional basis. Only current Yale faculty, staff, and students may use the service.
- New Haven Schools: Review information about the many schools in our area, including neighborhood public schools, public magnet schools, charter schools, and private (“independent”) schools.
- Programs for children three to five years old (PreK) in certain communities may offer free or subsidized preschool and school readiness slots.
- Lactation Rooms at Yale offer quiet, private spaces for nursing or pumping. There is even a lactation room at the McDougal Center (135 Prospect St.) - contact McDougal Associate Director Jennifer Mendelsohn for access.
If you have general questions about family-friendly services or resources for student spouses/partners or parents, please contact Assistant Dean for Student Affairs, Lisa Brandes.