Finals week at college is certainly a stressful time, whether you are working on projects or studying for exams. There is a lot of pressure to demonstrate what you have learned throughout the semester. This is somehow my sixth finals week here at Mudd (when did I become an upperclassman?), and I have developed some tips for how to relax and destress!
1. Take advantage of dorm events
Dorms kick events into high gear during finals to help provide a break! I live in Drinkward, and we had a variety of options in the last two weeks of the semester. Our official dorm meeting was called ‘Lawn games,’ and consisted of exactly what that name implies–favorites included a slip ‘n slide and beanbag toss, plus the dorm mentors providing surprise pizza and lots of other snacks! The dorm also organized a boba run using dorm funds, so everyone got customized free boba. These events differ from year to year (in the fall Drinkward had piñatas!) and from dorm to dorm, but are always a great break.
2. Head to Muchachos sponsored Noisy Minutes
During finals week, quiet hours cover 23.75 hours of the day every day, to allow for a better studying environment. The remaining fifteen minutes are “noisy minutes,” where we strive to be as loud as physically possible. The Muchachos host events during that time–highlights from this year include a cakewalk where none of the prizes were cake and a bubble wrap popping party–and they are always a lot of fun. They also often come with free food! In the fall, we had breakfast food at 9pm, and this semester we had Hoch-sponsored snacks. Noisy minutes are a great reminder to take a break.
3. Spend time with your friends
Find something new and fun to do! My friends and I got takeout this week and ate it together, which was a great break. I also went bowling with the Living Learning Community (I have not been bowling in a very long time and my score definitely reflected that…). You also don’t necessarily have to leave campus–studying with friends is a great way to hold yourself accountable and have someone to bounce ideas off of!
4. Study at the library
The library hosts a “Night Owls” program during finals week, meaning it is open 24/7 for finals week and features all sorts of fun. In the afternoon, there are snacks available on the plaza, and in the evening a ‘roving refuel cart’ featuring coffee and tea among other beverages moves throughout the library. There are puzzle and coloring breaks, as well as a set of hidden owl stuffed animals around the library — finding one is redeemable for prizes! Plenty of other events happen as well, including a free food truck night and a craft night.
5. Get off campus
There is a lot to do off campus as well! Two of my favorites are the Farmer’s Market and California Botanical Gardens. The Farmer’s Market takes place Sunday mornings in Claremont Village and features all kinds of exciting things to do and see. The Botanical Gardens are open throughout the week and offer a great place to go for a walk and see native plants! Both are just a short walk away from campus.