Therapy dogs, chair massages and more: Iwasaki Library to host Cirque de De-Stress this Friday – Berkeley Beacon

December 3, 2021 by No Comments

In the midst of the most stressful time of any college student’s semester—finals week—the Iwasaki Library will be hosting Cirque de De-Stress, a Spirit Award winning event where students can unwind with therapy dogs, chair massages, guided meditation, and more. 

The event will be held on Friday Dec. 3 from 1-4 p.m., and is open to any student looking to participate in self-care activities to alleviate stress as the semester comes to an end. 

“The library will still be available for all of its library functions, but at the front part, we’re going to have a space for people to be doing arts and crafts,” said Cate Schneiderman, reference coordinator and co-creator of the event. “There will also be a spot for them to swipe in and sign up for an appointment with a therapy dog or a chair massage.” 

The event, started in 2014, was born from students’ growing desires to engage with animals on campus as a means of stress relief. As part of the Engagement Lab’s Community PlanIt project, a grant fund for projects on campus, the Iwasaki Library was given the necessary funding to make this request a reality, and the event grew from there. 

“At the time, there was awareness of therapy dogs and meditation, things you could do for stress relief that don’t cost a lot of money or time, but can really have an impact on your well being,” Executive Director of Library & Learning Cheryl McGrath said

Since the creation of Cirque de De-Stress, its intent has always been to offer students a space to practice self care during a time when they need it most. Additionally, it aims to do so in a fun and engaging way and provide students a unique experience on campus. 

“It’s a trend that I’ve seen nationally in libraries for the past decade or two, where librarians would see the students come in and see how hard they were working,” McGrath said. “You’d see the same student in the same seat sometimes for six hours, just being so dedicated, working so hard. Students being able to get up from their table after …….



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