St. Joseph’s University, New York encouraged students at its Long Island Campus to “Paws to De-Stress” before finals, with a mix of relaxing events and free food offered on the last day of spring semester classes last week.
Students had the opportunity to support their mental health during the May 4 event by visiting with and petting a lovable 3-year-old golden retriever therapy dog named Jake, filling in coloring pages, drawing on rocks, and sharing positive post-it note messages with classmates.
“We’re actually writing our master’s thesis today, so this was a nice mental break,” said Jenna Webb, a senior graduating this month with master’s degree in Special Education.
Her classmate Susanne Hoffner agreed.
“We both needed it — get a little anxiety out before we go finish our paper,” said Hoffner, who’s also graduating this month with a master’s in Special Education. “It feels great to be graduating. I’m ready to be done.”
Lauren, a sophomore nursing major, felt the event offered a great way to get into the right mind space before finals.
“I’m excited for the end of the semester, but nervous because we still have finals next week,” she said. “We’re trying to remain calm and collected, and this is helping. Everyone can use dog therapy!”