Healthy and Wise

Some students relieve stress during finals by interacting with Denison's 'therapy dogs.'

Every college student has his or her own strategy for a successful finals week—energy drinks and late nights versus Pop-Tarts and early mornings; reviewing alone versus group study sessions; white boards versus index cards —the variations are endless and entirely personalized.

One thing in the midst of the madness is certain: it is up to students to find the right schedule for themselves. The Library is open till 2 a.m., Sunday through Thursday and on Friday and Saturday, it is open until midnight. Slayter is available for students studying 24/7, and the following computer labs are also open 24 hours a day: Fellows 100, Curtis computer lab, Huffman computer lab, and Higley 028.

And that type of wellness is important at Denison. For example, the Denison Libraries partnered with the Whisler Center for Student Wellness to host a De-Stress Fest in December of 2015.

While some animal-deprived students crowded around eight therapy dogs, (including a furry Mrs. Claus and cuddly corgi), others were able to enjoy a free chair massage, make a craft, eat some snacks (take some for later), socialize, and learn a couple chair yoga moves that they could break out during a test or major paper writing session.

“Being ‘well’ is not the absence of sickness,” says Director of Whisler Center for Student Wellness Amanda Lefeld. “It is taking care of your whole self — physical, mental, and emotional. When you don’t sleep, eat real meals, or give your brain a break, it actually leaves you in a worse state. We try to help students to study in more meaningful ways by emphasizing ways that they can care for their whole selves.”

And finding those personal boundaries with the support of others (whether they have two legs or four) is, in many ways, what college is all about.

March 10, 2016