It’s finals time at OSUM, and that news can bring on the stress for the best of students.

Attending college can be stressful, especially during final exams. According to The American Institute of Stress, eight in 10 college students say they sometimes or frequently experienced stress in their daily lives. That’s why The Ohio State University at Mansfield is always looking for ways to reduce student stress before finals week.

Dover the Therapy Dog visited the students in the Bromfield Library and Information Commons just before finals began. Dover has been coming to the Ohio State Mansfield campus for the past three years. Not only does she provide some sweet little puppy dog kisses, but she is also helping students relax before they crack open the books to study for finals.

For many of the students, it brings a little piece of home to the campus. Freshman English Major Jasmine Feller said, “I have a bunch of cats and dogs back home in Cleveland. Having the therapy dog here makes me feel like I’m back at home cuddling with my own pets.”

Sherena Shrock, Dover’s owner, is happy to bring the pup on campus for the students to pet and cuddle. “I’ve seen that it really helps the students relax and enjoy their time with her. Dover really enjoys it, too. She loves the attention,” Shrock explains.

“It’s really relaxing because animals give you comfort. Whenever I’m around animals I am so much more at ease,” Feller explained while giving Dover a little hug. “Having a dog here on campus helps me to overcome a little bit of stress. I can get myself together and then get back on track with my studying. I really enjoy it.”

Jordanne Sims, a freshman biology major, was the first to run up to Dover. The smiles beamed on both Sims and Dover’s faces. She happily exclaimed, “It’s great to have things like this on campus because it gives me a feeling of home and relaxes me before I am about to study. I am not as stressed as I was before I met dog.”

“I think more students should get involved in these extra activities. It’s a nice thing to have because here you can’t have dogs. They are something that most people grew up with, and it just relaxes you,” Sims said.

Head Librarian Vanessa Kraps has seen the impact having a therapy dog can have on students. “People want to be around her, they are excited,” Kraps explains. “We see a big uptick in the number of people who come to visit the library when Dover is here.”

The library is just one of many places across campus that finals week activities are taking place. Students are taking a trip to the Altitude Trampoline Park in Mansfield with discounted tickets to bounce off the pre-finals blues! The staff and administration also put on their aprons to help feed hungry students during a Late Night Breakfast event. More than 100 students came to the Marketplace to enjoy a warm meal, cookie decorating, and many more activities to help them relax between studying for finals.

Finals are now underway and will conclude on Thursday.

Source, Photo: The Ohio State University at Mansfield

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