Harvard ‘nap room’ idea gains nationwide popularity
Published: Monday, March 11, 2013
Updated: Monday, March 11, 2013 23:03
A sophomore at Harvard proposed on the school’s petition tool that the campus provide a nap room – an idea that has appealed to college student across the nation.
Yuqi Hou’s, the Harvard sophomore, proposal received 191 votes in favor of an on-campus nap room, ranking it as one of the top three proposals. A dean reviews Harvard’s top three proposals on the petition tool each month.
Students at UConn responded positively to the idea of a nap room on campus. Some students think a designated area for napping would clear up any conflict between people using a space for napping and people using a space for what it was actually designed for.
Seeing people snooze in the library or in a study room is not an uncommon scene. A nap room would alleviate the problem of people sleeping where others are trying to study or have meetings.
“It’s embarrassing to fall asleep in the library because people are judging you like: ‘Go to your dorm, you’re taking up precious study space,” Jisha Anwar, a 4th-semester molecular and cell biology major at UConn, said.
Though a dorm is an ideal spot to crash in the middle of the day, commuter students may be left out in the cold. Commuters often do not have enough time to drive back home to take a nap in between classes.
“I think that the commuter lounge in the Student Union often gets used as a nap room,” Commuter Students Association’s Chief Organization Officer Rebecca Guimond said. “However, this is a small space and it can get crowded.”
Her ideal nap room would include locker space for people to keep their belongings safe while they napped.
Jie Fu, the Event Coordinator for CSA, suggested that if UConn was to have a nap room, it should be placed in the Reading Room in the Wilbur Cross Building.
“It is unfair that people use our lounge as a nap room in the Union,” Fu said. “The Reading Room would be easy to get to for a nap.”
Napping can be especially helpful for students because it can improve their learning and working memory. As a person sleeps, recent memories are transferred to the neocortex, the part of the brain where long-term memories are stored. Naps may also help students become more creative. During REM sleep, or dream sleep, information is allowed to flow freely, connecting disparate insights, and forming new associations that can help in creative problem solving.
A nap room on campus may also provide more student work opportunities. The nap room would have to be staffed with people to keep it clean, keep it quiet and keep it safe. It may be difficult to find the perfect space for a nap room that is secure, convenient and sanitary, but it may be beneficial to students.