Pet Therapy, Yoga, Massages and 24-Hour Study Lounges Will Help Relieve Final Exam Stress for Students

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Editors: This Is Not Open to the Public but You are Welcome to Cover These Events at Rutgers University-Newark

WHAT:  Each semester, “DeStress Fest” helps students at Rutgers University in Newark cope with the stressors of final exams through a program of activities specifically designed to reduce stress and provide emotional and moral support. This spring those activities include a round-the-clock study lounge, extended hours at the campus library and athletic center, massages, relaxation stations, yoga and free snacks.  All events and snacks are free; all activities open to both residential and commuter students.

WHO: DeStress Fest is sponsored by: the Office of the Chancellor, the Counseling Center, Paul Robeson Campus Center, the Center for Law and Justice, the Office of Student Life & Leadership, the Office of Housing & Residence Life, Athletics & Recreation Department, Unity Theatre , and Student Health Advocates (Health Promotion Division of Health Services).

WHEN/WHERE:  April 30-May 14, various campus locations (Please see calendar)

BACKGROUND: DeStress Fest started with a twice-annual midnight pancake breakfast, held during winter and spring finals. For students who were cramming for exams, the pancake breakfasts provided nourishment, a needed break from their studies, and moral support, courtesy of Rutgers staff and administrators who served the pancakes while offering encouragement and a sympathetic ear. The breakfasts are still served but the campus has added a wide range of activities to help students manage the stresses associated with finals.

INFORMATION:  For mental health/stress issues, Dr. Anice Thomas, Counseling Center, 973/353-5805; for student life issues, Gerald Massenburg, 973/353-5541.  MEDIA INFORMATION: Carla Capizzi, 973/353-5263.


Spring DeStress Fest Kick-Off
Norman Samuels Plaza, April 30, 2:30 – 4 p.m.

featuring free massages, “Drum Café,” a graffiti wall, sand art, giveaways and refreshments


Schedule of Events for Spring 2014 DeStress Fest
(all events are free and open to residential and commuter students)

Massage Therapy

  • Tuesday, April 29, 2 - 4 p.m., Rutgers Center for Law and Justice (CLJ), 123 Washington St., Newark
  • Wednesday, April 30, 2- 4 p.m., Norman Samuels Plaza (behind the Paul Robeson Campus Center (PRCC), 350 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
  • Thursday, May 1, 12 -2 p.m., Stonsby Commons Lounge, 91 Bleeker St.
  • Saturday, May 3,  9 a.m.,CLJ
  • Monday, May 5, 11:30 a.m. -1:30 p.m., PRCC,
  • Wednesday, May 7, 4 - 6 p.m., Stonsby Commons Lounge
  • Monday, May 12, 2 - 4 p.m., CLJ
  • Tuesday, May 13, 11 -1 p.m., PRCC
  • Wednesday, May 14, 12 -2 p.m., PRCC

Pancake Breakfast
Open to all resident and commuter students, Wednesday, May 7, 10 p.m., Stonsby Commons Cafeteria

 PB&J Party
Study Break: Free PB&J’s and other snacks, Thursday, May 8, 10p.m., Stonsby Commons Lounge. 

Pet Therapy
Throw your stress to the dogs with Woof! Therapy, Tuesday, May 6, 7 p.m., Stonsby Commons Lounge, and Monday, May 12, 7 p.m., University Square, 155 University Ave.

DeStress at Family & Friends
Wednesday, May 7,  6:30 p.m., interactive games with Student Health Advocates; 7:15p.m., interactive performance with Unity Theatre, Bradley Hall Theatre, 392 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., 3rd floor; raffles, prizes and food as well as activities.

Relaxation Station: Let’s Relax Hawaiian style!
Enjoy Infinity Relaxation Chairs, personal massages, tropical lip balms and lotions, and drinks at our tiki bar. Monday, May 12, 8:10p.m., Stonsby Cafeteria

 Yoga Class
Monday, May 5, 11:30 a.m. - 12:30p.m., PRCC Dance Studio
Friday, May 9, 12 - 1p.m., PRCC Dance Studio

 DeStress Ur Body!
Workout! Extended Gym Hours: May 8, 12, and 13, gym and pool open until 11p.m.; Golden Dome Athletic Center, 42 Warren St.

Free Game Room, April 30-May 7, ALL DAY, PRCC, R Place, 1st Fl.

Study Time
24-hour study lounge, Stonsby Commons

Need a quiet place to study? John Cotton Dana Library, extended hours May 4-14