Finals suck. That’s no secret. The buildup of consecutive all-nighters and caffeine-binges just to spew out information onto a page that you will forget immediately after taking the exam is enough to drive any student to the brink of mental breakdowns. Students at every school have to deal with this harsh reality at the end of each semester, but come finals week, there is one benefit that separates us from every other university: the hammocks.
If you haven’t yet checked out the hammocks, you’re missing out bigtime. During finals, the school puts up a multitude of orange hammocks in the courtyard behind the library (next to the fountain in front of Cox, for those who need more direction). After being strung up between each set of palm trees in close enough proximity, the collection of hammocks creates a sort of sun-dappled campus paradise right behind the deep, dark depths of Richter. A study break spent here is enough to restore the sanities of many students at once, and it’s one of those iconic UM perks that makes going to school in tropical South Florida so intoxicating.
So, why limit this prime setup to only one week out of the year? After the hit that the academic calendar took after Irma this semester, both professors and students have had to stress over the collective cramming of class material into fewer exams and less classes. Everybody here could use some time to decompress and relax during a busy day, or between exams. Even if the school didn’t put them up for us, making it socially acceptable for students to assemble their own hammocks in the courtyard would be fantastic. Stress is a necessary evil of sorts, but an excess of it can be damaging to students, faculty, and those around them. Why not dedicate this area to hammocks year-round, enforcing a happier and healthier UM community? “Canes care for Canes” as the saying goes, and sometimes, things can be even simpler than napping pods in the UC.