By Rose Miller, Staff Reporter 

Upcycled Christmas decorations made by Louise Villemont (Photo Courtesy of Louise Villemont)

Upcycled Christmas decorations made by Louise Villemont (Photo Courtesy of Louise Villemont)

Like every year, UMF does what it can to help reduce students’ stress during finals week. This year will bring some old traditions, like late night free pizza, as well as some less typical events, including professional massages and a Sustainable Campus Coalition holiday craft event.

Heading off finals week next Monday, students can take a break from cramming and decompress with a quick massage. Coordinator of Conferences and Events Ernestine Hutchinson gave details in an email. Licensed massage therapist Jason Lemieux will be set up in North Dining Hall C from 9 am to 6 pm. All students and faculty members are welcome to participate. Massages are $10 for 10 minutes, first come first serve.

Hutchinson further explained about the unique occasion. “Jason Lemieux approached me on doing massage here at the college,” Hutchinson wrote. “I suggested to him that we do it a day during Finals since this is a stressful time for many.” So anyone whose head is pounding from hitting those books should think about taking advantage of this opportunity as Lemieux “specializes in deep tissue and tension headache relief.”

The Sustainable Campus Coalition also presents a relatively new tradition that offers students a chance to take a study break. On Thursday December 10th SCC will be hosting the second annual Upcycled Holiday Decorations event at 6:30-8:30 PM in the North Dining Hall C.

SCC student co-leader Louise Villemont explained the idea behind the event and provided details via email. “The Sustainable Campus Coalition started this annual event last year and scheduled it for right before last week of classes and finals,” said Villemont. “I believe it worked well to let people relax for a few moments one evening.”

Because the idea behind upcycling is to reuse materials to produce new things, students in SCC picked up supplies for the event at Everyone’s Resource Depot, a non-profit organization located on campus that encourages recycling. “Instead of purchasing new materials, we will be using materials that have been recycled and in good condition to create “new” and fun things!,” said Villemont. Using these materials, such as; puzzle pieces, bottle caps, ribbons, cards, wrapping paper, and more, participating students can fashion creative decorations and gifts.

The event also presents an opportunity for some students to get in the holiday spirit while they’re away from home during the Christmas pre-season.  Said Villemont,“We will also be getting some candy canes and be playing some music for the holiday spirit.” Food and drink will also be provided courtesy of Aramark.

Aramark is also the sponsor to one of UMF’s long held finals week traditions. On Monday the 14th, free pizza will be served in South Dining Hall from 9:00 to 10:00 pm. While many returning students probably recall this annual event, First-Years should know there is always free pizza in the fall and free ice-cream in the spring on finals week.

“The purpose of the event is to provide a study break and a time for students to come together, have fun and chat as a way to break up,” said Director of Student Life Brain Ufford. “A person does not have to live on campus and this does not require a meal plan to participate.”

But don’t have so much fun you forget to study! To anyone who wasn’t already aware, the library has offered extended hours all this week, with doors opening at 7:45 AM and closing at midnight. Besides a place of study, Mantor is offering students a chance to relax as well. In addition to the extended hours, a coloring table has been set up with coloring pages, markers and crayons to help students take a break and unwind, explained Mantor Library staff member, Kelly Boivin. “We want to try to make life easier for you guys.”  Next week hours will be closer to normal, with opening time at 7:45 and closing at the usual 11.