Recurse Center

Making RC more family-friendly

We’re happy to announce a new set of policies intended to make RC more accessible to parents and caregivers of kids of all ages. You can read these policies in their entirety in our User’s Manual.

What’s new?

  • We will host more social events that can fit into a family schedule: they’ll happen earlier in the evening or on weekends. They’ll include daytime picnics, trips to museums, and early evening art nights. We are also changing our guest policy: all official RC social events will be open to the children and partners of Recursers who are parents.
  • You are welcome to bring your child to RC with you in situations where it might be especially difficult to find child care, like on school closure days (e.g. holidays, snow days), or if your infant is under 6 months old. Just let us know in advance.
  • We are installing a changing table in our restroom, and we have a small private wellness room that can be used for lactation. It can also be a space to use when you need a quiet moment with your child (e.g. to feed them, or calm them down if they’re upset).

RC's new wellness room

What’s already working?

RC already offers a flexible schedule while still being an immersive, full-time retreat. We’ve got a late start (10:30 am) and a four-day week (Fridays being optional). You can choose between different retreat lengths to fit your schedule. It’s alright to head out early every once in a while for an appointment, or miss a day or two if you tell us in advance. We don’t have any mandatory late-night or weekend events, and there are plenty of opportunities to socialize and bond with other Recursers during core hours, rather than off the clock.

We started offering mini retreats in part to allow Recursers with children to attend a retreat. After running the first two, we got feedback that those retreats were scheduled during school break weeks, which were especially challenging times to coordinate child care. We looked into the schedules for subsequent mini retreats, to ensure that the majority do not coincide with school breaks.

More importantly, the work, collaboration, and learning that happens at RC takes place both in-person and online, making it easy to stay engaged and active even if you’re on a different schedule than most other Recursers or if something is temporarily keeping you away from the space.

Why are we doing this?

We’ve adopted these new policies simply because we believe it’s the right thing to do. RC gets better as it gets bigger and more diverse, and we believe that more great programmers will be able to come to RC if we create a space that is easier for caregivers to navigate. We’ve also been inspired by an increasing number of Recursers with children attending a retreat, and by seeing many of our alums become parents for the first time over the past few years. Now that we’ve moved to a bigger space, more options for better supporting parents are available to us: we are able to have a wellness room, and we can host potentially loud events on one floor during core hours without disrupting focused work on the other floor.

Accessibility helps everyone, not just the folks whose needs are directly addressed by the changes. Hosting events at a wider variety of times will provide more socializing opportunities to parents as well as people with longer commutes or prior evening commitments. When it’s not being used by a parent or caregiver, the wellness room will be available to all Recursers who might need it to be comfortable at RC. We are committed to making RC accessible to anyone who wants to spend time here becoming a better programmer. We hope that the combination of living expense grants (available to people from groups traditionally underrepresented in programming), one-week mini retreats, and our new family-friendly policies will make it easier for parents and caregivers to thrive at RC.

If you’re interested in joining the RC community, apply today!