The snow has (mostly) melted. Birds are singing. The Law Library is currently limited to law students and legal researchers. It must be spring in Wisconsin!

Like most people, I get a little antsy at this time of year. Finals are approaching, the weather refuses to fully turn pleasant, and it seems that everything comes at you all at once. One aspect of law librarianship that we have focused on in recent years is student and employee wellness and creating a welcoming space that makes this time of year less stressful. To that end, let's take a look at some items and resources to help you get through this final push and on to a blissful summer.

First, Law Library staff have created a guide for law student wellbeing. This guide includes a longer description of many of the items we'll discuss below plus other resources available to you in the building and on campus. Lawyers in general have refocused in recent years on wellness and a better work/life balance and it's none too soon. Without your mental and physical health, you can't be the best lawyer you can be!

So what does the Law Library offer? Comfort is important here, so you can check out different accouterments for improving our seating. Some examples include seat cushions, lumbar support pillows and our ever-popular standing desks. You can also save yourself a trip home by checking out a phone charger (either IPhone or Android) for a few hours or a brand-new oversized book stand for those enornous law school tomes that you lug around. We also have headphones and even a television with a combo VCR/DVD player to check out!

Plus, we have some things that you don't check out - you just keep 'em! Ask at the Circulation Desk for earplugs, screen wipes or an extra mask. We're happy to supply these for you!

An important part of student wellness is taking time to enjoy a little bit of fun. To that end, you can check out frisbees for a toss on Bascom Hill or ping-pong paddles for a game on the table in the atrium. We also have a large collection of fun legal-related movies and TV shows, ranging from Legally Blonde to The Wire (highly recommended!). Find a browsable list of our movies on our DVD page here.

Okay, so we also have books, of course! Our New Book Shelf, located near the soft seating and public workstations on the 5th floor, is home to a wellness collection to help you strike a balance between serious and substantive study time and mental well-being. A sampling of books available there can be found on this page, but I'd suggest browsing the whole collection. It's worth it - I think you'll find some great hidden gems.

Finally, we have our study rooms. I draw a line from private study space to wellness as some people find the smaller rooms more comforting and an environment that welcomes focus. You can reserve study rooms up to two weeks ahead of time online using our grid reservation system or just walk up to the Circulation Desk and ask what is available. A full list of Study Room FAQs and policies can be found here.

As finals approach, please keep your mental health in mind and take advantage of these items and resources that the Law Library provides. Of course, counselor John Schneider is also available in the Law School if you would like to speak with him about law school concerns and the law school also has it's own wellness guide here.

Best of luck on finals!

Submitted by Turner,Kristopher on April 20, 2022

This article appears in the categories: Law Library