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An Italian, a mom, and a student

Italian girls are renowned for not having kids. But Paola came to Denmark just before she had her first baby, and she is now going to have another

Italy has one of the lowest fertility rates in the world. The average Italian woman has only 1.38 children in her lifetime. But Paola Saporita, a Master’s student at the Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences in Copenhagen, is not your average Italian woman.

Originally a primary school teacher in Milan, and already with a Master’s in Biology, Paola moved to Copenhagen with her husband who got a job here.

»When I moved to Copenhagen, I was seven months pregnant, and I had the baby, my son Claudio, while in Denmark,« Paola says.

To kindergarten to learn Danish

In Denmark, Paola decided to come back to university because she was interested in pharmaceutical research. Before she knew it, she was pregnant again. Now her first child is 11 months old, and she has a second child on the way, probably in mid April next year. Paola plans to take an exam three days before her due date.

Up to now, Paola has managed to find a balance between her studies and her family.

Her child goes to kindergarten until 16.00 while she is at the University and her husband works. One good thing about sending their son to kindergarten here is that in this way he will learn Danish easily, she explains.

Family, career. No choice necessary

Being a mom student is not all plain sailing though.

»At the moment I am a bit tired, also because of the second pregnancy. But I am a lucky woman. My husband helps me a lot, thanks to the fact that he finishes work earlier than when we were in Italy,« Paola says.

She appreciates that in Denmark the norm is for people to work until the afternoon, say at 16.00, and to have time for their family in the evening. In this way, you don’t have to choose between your family and your career like in Italy, she says.

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