By the end of the semester, everyone on campus, especially our students, are feeling a bit stressed to put in mildly. To try and help alleviate some of this stress, the library has started to offer a series of de-stressing events. The first time we did these, they proved so popular, we thought, why not make these events a regular occurrence that students can look forward to every year, so that’s exactly what we have done.
The first Monday after classes ended the library offered “Surviving Finals” goodie bags filled with snacks, pens and pencils, cute animal erasers, and notecards students could use to create flashcards. The baggies were also incentive for students to follow us on Instagram if they haven’t already. Students really appreciated these little pick-me-ups as we were giving them out.
On the first Reading Day this year, which landed on Wednesday, May 1, the library offered free massage to students from 3 p.m.-6 p.m. This event was just as popular as it has been in the past as the 48 slots filled up days in advance. Following up this event is hard, but another event that’s proven quite popular is our therapy dog visit. This year Mary Johnson brought her gentle giant, Lewis, to interact with the students and calm their nerves on our library’s patio.
Two new events we offered this year were a button making session and a movie night. Both events happened on Friday, May 3. For the button making event, students got to pick out designs we printed for them, design their own button or bring in something they wanted to make into a button. Some of the designs we provided were photos from our archives of the library’s opening fifty years ago and fun sayings that were designed by the Dean’s sister-in-law. For the movie night, students got to vote on the movie they wanted screened. The winner ended up being Lady Bird which was shown in the newly renovated LINC Center.
Throughout the week, as students buckled down in the library until the wee hours, utilizing our 24-hour schedule, a snack cart was wheeled around for the students to grab some sustenance to keep them going. We also set out markers and colored pencils so students could color in bookmarks as part of our “Color Your Stress Away” display.
While these events take time and planning, it’s worth it to see our students light up when we offer these to them. Even alums were joking on our Facebook page that their grades would have been better if all of these events were available to them in 1984! While we can’t guarantee our students will get all As, we do hope they feel our support during finals!