Stressed over final exams? This Utah university has a ‘cry closet’ for students

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Caption
The University of Utah added a space to the library for student stress. The "Cry Closet" provides a place for students to let it all out. The closet is an art project by a student. It has provoked praise and criticism.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

University of Utah students on the brink of tears during finals week have a space to let it all out.

The university's library has a "Cry Closet" now available for "stressed out students," a statement on the closet's door reads.

"The space is meant to provide a place for students studying for finals to take a short 10-minute break."

And, there are rules listed: Knock before entering, only one person inside at a time, limit time inside to 10 minutes and turn the lights out before leaving.

The closet, a free-standing art project by senior Nemo Miller in collaboration with Tony Miller and David Meyer, was installed Sunday. It's lined with a black interior, and plush stuffed animals are inside.

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"One aspect of humanity that I am currently exploring is connections and missed connections through communication," Nemo told Inside Higher Ed. "It's been interesting to watch the response to this piece about human emotions, and I'm proud to see the power of art in action."

Photos of the project went viral Tuesday to praise and criticism. At least one person questioned if the closet was soundproof. A few people said there should be more of these around campus.

The university acknowledged the closet's installation, which was approved by the school, was an attempt at humor but also a "work of art meant to provoke feeling, thought & conversation, which the artist has apparently done."

The closet will remain in the library until the end of final exams next Wednesday, the university said.