This university has a ‘cry closet’ in the library for students who are stressed about finals

The end of the semester can be stressful for college students, with final exams turning up the heat on students’ anxieties. There’s a reason everyone has that recurring nightmare where they’re unprepared for their finals or, worse, miss the important class entirely.

For those looking for a release during this trying time, the University of Utah has come up with a possible solution: a “cry closet.” Yep, located in the library, the “cry closet” is a free-standing woodshop project that allows students to pop in for 10 minutes at a time to let it all out.


The only rules? You must knock before entering and turn out the lights before leaving. Oh, and there are stuffed animals inside.

Here are some photos of the closet that a student — Twitter user @aJackieLarsen — posted to Twitter. They include the list of rules, plus an adorable stuffed animal collection:

How did the cry closet come about? It was invented by two creative students, and has been described on the university’s official Twitter account as “an attempt at humor.”

“One aspect of humanity that I am currently exploring is connections and missed connections through communication,” senior Nemo Miller, who made the closet in collaboration with Tony Miller and David Meyer, said in a statement. “It’s been interesting to watch the response to this piece about human emotions, and I’m proud to see the power of art in action.”

The university is clearly on board with the idea as a way for students to manage their stress during finals (although puppies and free food did rack up more votes in the university’s Twitter poll):

“The installation, available for use by all students, has sparked dialogue about expressing emotions, particularly those in public spaces,” a spokesperson from the University of Utah told BuzzFeed News.

The cry closet did receive some backlash on social media. After the university shared a photo of it on Twitter, one commenter called it “pathetic,” and said students need to be prepared for the real world.

“Wonder how many prospective employers have cry closets?” Twitter user @dexdawg wrote.

The university responded to @dexdog directly, commenting, “We will cease and desist all attempts at humor across campus.”

Officials went on to explain that the cry closet wasn’t only installed as a joke, but also as “an art installation that is meant to provoke feeling, thought and conversation.”

The closet was set to remain available to students through May 2, when finals ended. What do you think? Would you take advantage of a “cry closet”?