Building on our efforts to offer healthier food options during finals, College Library expanded its partnership with University Health Services (UHS) for the fall 2014 semester. Together we encouraged everyone who stopped by the library to have a #healthyfinals and to #studystrong – in mind and body. Along with our other campus partners, College Library offered strategies and a variety of events for coping (and staying well) during this stressful period.
We kicked off the start of final exams with words of encouragement from Badger SPILL. Volunteers from this anonymous peer-to-peer support network made of and for UW-Madison students were on hand to explain their services and offer free water bottles & stress balls on Thursday evening, December 11.
The next day, College Library and UHS wanted to know how students planned to “Stay Healthy” during finals. Students could tweet their plan for a #healthyfinals or write it on the large white board in the library and, as a reward, help themselves to free snacks provided by UHS – bananas, tangerines, nuts, granola, bars, raisins, etc.
The celebration of the last day of classes continued with “Caffeine Therapy” – in moderation of course – at the Open Book Café. With free regular coffee, tea, or hot chocolate from 7pm to 2am (courtesy of the Wisconsin Union), all those studying in the library had a little extra fuel to prepare their exam plan.
On Saturday, Dec. 13, “Study Consults” where available with GUTS tutors along with free coffee and treats for those receiving assistance. This study day event was sponsored by ASM and the Division of Student Life. Also, whimsical ‘healthy winter’ coloring pages were made available for students hoping to indulge in a little “Art Therapy.”
Students were able to enjoy the benefits of exercise to relieve stress and ensure a healthy finals with an “Action Break” on Sunday the 14th. With jump ropes, hula hoops, and a hopscotch court, students could keep their bodies moving and their minds focused. Cheering them on was Bucky Badger, who stopped by that evening for a half-hour of encouragement and photo-ops.
This healthy trend continued with “Mental Acuity Monday” and the opportunity to sharpen cognitive skills with LEGOs and a 1000 piece puppy puzzle. Even more appreciated, however, were the twenty-five pizzas sent to the library by Dean Lori Berquam and Chancellor Becky Blank. Students were willing to wait in line for a slice of sanctified pizza goodness on Monday night.
On Tuesday we took a break from striving to better ourselves with physical or mental exercise and reverted back to the primal with a big dose of dog. The therapy canines of Dogs on Call were on hand in 1st and 2nd Floor Center; to see the love check out several videos posted to our new Vine account. We also featured tweeted photos (#studystrongpets) of personal pets on the monitor in the library’s “living room,” giving patrons a chance to share their own special family members.
On Wednesday, Dec. 17, students had the chance to work out all of their frustrations with the gratifying ka-thunk of the library’s button-maker. We concluded our week of finals events with patrons having the opportunity to make something creative and “Button Up.”
College Library would like to express its sincere gratitude to all of our campus partners for making this week of events possible. For more photos of all of our finals activities from the fall semester, please see our Flickr album.