Finals Are Coming, Man Your Stations!

The inevitable is finally approaching, the roadblock between you and summer vacation is right in front of you and it is time to face it with full force. Although finals may seem like a horrible experience, approaching them wisely may help ease it a bit. Here are a few tips to make finals week more manageable:

  • KEEP CALM: I know, it’s hard to keep calm when you are about to take a test that will determine your grade in a class, but it is important to keep composure. Finals are stressing and they can be intimidating, but much worse than the final itself is stress. If you are too stressed out about your finals it can inhibit your ability to focus when studying or when taking the exam-  resulting in a lower score. I can testify to this from experience. When I was a freshman, I had very bad test anxiety;  I would allow my stress to take over and as a result I would do poorly on my exams. The constant thought that the test was going to be hard and my fear of failing caused me to do poorly. I saw a change in my performance once I began to think positively about myself. Assuring yourself that you have what it takes to do well on an exam plays a big role in your performance. Stay positive, keep calm, and as long as you’ve done your best to prepare for the exam you will be positive you have done all you can do to prepare.

Continue reading “Finals Are Coming, Man Your Stations!”


Don’t Stress!

As the end of the winter quarter approaches, the increasingly sunny weather becomes inviting. While it can be nice to enjoy a day outdoors, the thought of ending the second round of midterms and preparing for finals is typically stressful.

Luckily, we have many resources available to us on campus that focus on maintaining and improving our well-being. In addition, they’re free, easily accessible, and available year-round.

On-Campus Resources

Many of you may already be familiar with this great resource, but for those of you who are not, the ARC accommodates a variety of ways to exercise. Among the standard weights, cardio machines, and group exercise classes, the ARC contains an indoor track and a rock-climbing wall. In addition, there are personal training options, IM sports, an equestrian center, and a crafts center available to students. As stated on the Anxiety and Depression Association of America’s website, the release of endorphins during exercise promotes better sleep and elevates mood.

As a bonus, exercise promotes the movement of lymph through the body, which increases your body’s immune response. If you typically get sick when you’re studying hard, exercise can be a good way to prevent that!

One of the resources provided by the Student Health and Wellness Center (SHCS) is the Mind Spa located on the second floor of the building in the CAPS clinic. The Mind Spa provides biofeedback programs to help you manage stress, massaging recliners to physically relax you, and a quiet atmosphere to allow you to listen to guided meditation audio files.

Another stress-reducing activity located on the second floor is yoga, which is hosted on Wednesdays from 1:30 PM – 3:00 PM.

In addition to the resources in the Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) clinic, the Student Health and Wellness Center accommodates Health Education and Promotion (HEP), which is located on the third floor. Along with providing nap kits, a useful Nap Map, and some articles to promote improved sleeping habits, HEP hosts a variety of events to enhance wellness.

Anonymous HIV testing, free condoms, and helpful handouts on successful sexual communication are all part of HEP’s efforts to support sexual health.

The Teaching Kitchen, also a part of HEP, has hands-on cooking classes and fresh-from-the-farm cooking classes a few times a quarter to help students with maintaining proper nutrition.

The House is temporarily open at 132 North Hall. They offer yoga classes on Fridays in their Mind Body Wellness gym and provide massage chairs for relaxation. In addition, they offer counseling services from their peer advocates.

Taking a walk through these gardens, especially in sunny weather, would make anyone happier.

Other Resources

  • Sometimes Therapy Fluffies are available on the quad. Liking the UCD SHCS Facebook page will help keep you updated on when you can count on fuzzy animals to help you decrease stress.

For a summary of campus stress-relieving resources, click here.

For a detailed list of campus resources, you can access this PDF.



M. Joan Castañeda
Peer Adviser, Biology Academic Success Center
B.S. Neurobiology, Physiology, and Behavior, Class of 2014