How Your College May Be Putting You At Risk

Finals week. Stress is in the air and everyone is trying to keep it together, somehow. This is the time of the year where your college should be trying to provide forms of stress relief, as to reduce the risk of mental breakdowns and suicide. But no, your school may actually be putting you more at risk than you would be otherwise. 

I can read your mind and you’re thinking: But wait, doesn’t Geneseo provide stress relieving sand to play with? You’re definitely correct but think about it more critically. Where is the sand to relieve stress located? In the library, which is open 24/7 during finals week.

Geneseo has its library open all day, every day during finals week and while this may seem like a good thing it is actually not. This is conditioning you to practice behaviors that are bad for your health. It is encouraging things like cramming and staying up all night to complete assignments. And if you get tired, Books and Bytes is also open late during finals week so you can get your fill of coffee.  It would be more defensible if the school was promoting behaviors that actually have a positive impact in academic achievement. Cramming, does not. As you can readhere . “The problem is the trade-off between study and sleep. Studying, of course, is a key contributor to academic achievement, but what students may fail to appreciate is that adequate sleep is also important for academics, researchers say” says UCLA researcher Dr. Fuligni. Sleep, as we all know is vastly important to humans and a lack of sleep can affect our performance, alertness, and memory. All key factors in academic achievement

If colleges would promote healthier activities like school sponsored mental health days, where students are allowed 24 hours to recuperate and regroup themselves so that they can plan out how to study for their finals. Another brilliant idea that colleges could try is the implementation of policies that limit the stress put on a student. Things like assigning different test dates for students, based on the amount of exams they would have taken in a day. For example, if a student would have had 4 exams in one day, they can opt to take the exam on a different, predetermined date. This would require multiple exams be made and more effort from the professor and staff but if it can reduce the suicide rates on college campuses and maintain a happier environment, then it would be a worthwhile tradeoff!

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