The University of Utah has become the first college to install a ‘cry closet’ for stressed-out students this exam season.
The closet, designed by student Nemo Miller, is equipped with comfortable cushions and a little light; you can spend up to ten minutes in there before leaving to allow the next person in.
There are extensive rules concerning the closet, from always knocking before you enter to respecting the ten-minute rule.
The front of the cupboard appears as a piece of wall; as well as cushions, there are also plenty of cuddly toys to hold.
so my school installed a cry closet in the library LMFAOOOOOOOOO what is higher education pic.twitter.com/6rGcJv9qjr
— jacks (@aJackieLarsen) 24 April 2018
Whilst there has been positive feedback for the cry closet, with students declaring that safe spaces are important for keeping anxious students in the correct mindset- some students believe that the ‘cry closet‘ fuels the opinion that students are now a generation of ‘snowflakes’.
The creator of the cry closet, Nemo Miller, commented on the inspiration behind the project: ‘One aspect of humanity that I am currently exploring is connections and missed connections through communication,” Nemo said in a statement. “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.’
Students are now calling for more ‘cry closets’ to be around campus, whilst others have asked whether or not they are soundproofed as some plan to have a good old, loud, ugly cry before carrying on with their day.
The ‘cry closet’ is not a new phenomenon when it comes to personal space at university.
Universities in the UK have sleep pods which allow students to have quick naps, there are also multiple study rooms to be on your own as well as large work pods at university libraries.
Many students at Utah University, which also has counseling options available, feel that the cry closet is a positive take on mental health and dealing with extreme stress.
There has been some pretty negative feedback of course.
Politician Nigel Farage has commented that the university has completely lost the plot, whilst people on twitter also labelled the closet as pathetic.
‘This is stupid! I took final exams for many classes for four years and NEVER CRIED once! If these kids can’t handle tests kick them out of college!
Cry Closet’ may help Utah students overcome stress of final examshttps://t.co/iUjTqMqrTk
— Keesha@Keeshadoggie (@KeeshaYodabarb) 26 April 2018
Cry closets replace safe spaces. Some American universities have lost the plot. pic.twitter.com/L1aOkBIPK9
— Nigel Farage (@Nigel_Farage) 25 April 2018
What do you think of the cry closet? Would you use one if it were at your university?