It may be cold outside, but the students of Cornell University are enjoying the splendor of studying outside—sort of. Just in time for finals, the Olin Library was outfitted with thick carpets of grass, bringing the outdoors in. After research by the Human Ecology department, professors installed the grass to give stressed out students the restorative benefits of nature.
In an effort to spruce up mental health during the crucial—and stressful—week of finals, Cornell professors decided to give students a little nature therapy. Rolled out amidst two rows of comfy easy chairs and side tables, students are invited to kick of their shoes and wiggle their toes in the grass. Extra potted snake plants flank the bottom of each chair, with signs that caution not of a wet floor, but to watch for snakes!
Students can also sit or lay down in the middle of the indoor lawn, harkening the relaxed days of summer- rather than the cold winter of Ithaca. Thanks to the research of the Human Ecology department, the school decided to show students their findings, rather than report on them. Thus, the miniature library lawn was installed, to show studying students just how beneficial nature can be to their stress levels and moods.
Last year, the university installed a small lawn in their Mann Library for students who studied there. The Olin Library students will enjoy the indoor grass until winter break.