An alcove in the northwest corner of Room 2191 serves as College Library’s designated reflection space. The space is intended for brief retreats from studying and users are encouraged to relax, take a moment and clear their minds.
Guidelines for using the space include:
• more than one person may use this space at a time
• turn off electronic devices
• remember that this alcove is located in a quiet room; be considerate of others
• know that this space is not intended for sleeping or studying
Created in 2014 as a pilot project by the College Library Improvement Committee (CLIC), the space has proved popular with students on campus. In surveying users, a number of respondents mentioned how much they appreciated a “private place to pray and meditate” without having to situate themselves “behind bookshelves” or “in between the stacks.” One even suggested, “I’m glad that there is a space like this in the library; it would be nice to see it in other buildings as well.”
Other campus units do provide resources to help students manage stress and promote relaxation. University Health Services (UHS) has several audio files of relaxation exercises available online. And for more entrenched anxiety, there are stress management services where students have the opportunity to meet with a health-orientated provider to review goals and develop an individual action plan. The Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, part of the Waisman Center at UW-Madison, also provides a list of sources on cultivating well-being.
College Library is always interested in improving our facility. If you have any suggestions, please contact us.