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Feeling sleepy? UEA has opened a nap room for students

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The University of East Anglia (UEA) is going to be considered one of the luckiest universities by many jealous students, after announcing this month that they were the first university in the country to open a nap room for students.

I first thought it was a ridiculous idea. Who would want to nap in the middle of the university, in the middle of the day, surrounded by other napping students? That’s a bit weird isn’t it?

After seeing the actual picture of the nap room itself, it confirmed my initial response that, yes it is weird – all of the “nap nooks” are open to the view of the other napping students. I wouldn’t want strangers taking pictures of me and sending them to the university’s Spotted page.

Designed to give students a break from their stressful work, the room is equipped with sofa beds, bean bags, eye masks, and of course CCTV and strict instructions not to “misuse” the facility. If students do follow the “nap nook” rules, then I guess however, I do see the benefits of the project, as scientists have proven over and over again that naps can significantly improve memory and concentration.

You can’t however, just turn up at the nap room and have a nap. Students have to book a 40 minute sleep slot in advance, which would be pretty awkward for people like me who can lay there for hours trying to fall asleep.

What makes it even more awkward is the fact that students can only book the slots between 12pm and 6pm. Most students are known to be nocturnal animals that would rather do all-nighters and have spontaneous naps throughout – so sorry to just about everyone! You have to force yourself to work all night until the nap room opens at noon.

Holly Staynor, UEA’s Welfare, Community and Diversity Officer comments: “I have two real hopes for the project. First, that students with particular conditions such as chronic fatigue are provided with a campus that is more suited to their needs and second, that we are able to educate students around the dangers of staying up all night in the library around deadline period.”

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