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Camping out on campus

As the exam period progressed, our reporter found students turning the Faculty of Humanities into a home away from home. It all started with a storm

Students are usually driven into a frenzy around this time of year with merciless exams lurking just around the corner. Time spent at the library gradually outweighs time spent at home. So why not turn a library into one?

Why not indeed.

Amidst the madness of Christmas, New Year and December storms students turned a library at the Faculty of Humanities into a makeshift camp of blankets and even sleeping arrangements. Now, even though students are not sleeping over, the vibe of a ‘home away from home’, has stuck.

Night of the storm

Last December, at the Faculty of Humanities, film and media students found themselves unable to go home because of a storm. So they re-enacted a scene from the TV-series ‘Community’, where the students at a community college had built a huge blanket fort all over the school hallways.

With the help of the library’s sofas, a few blankets, and snacks, the ultimate kids’ hideaway was born and it was as if the mystery and fun had been put back into studying. It all happened like this, one of the students subsequently explained to me, when we went out there to visit:

“It was the day of the storm,” she said, referring to the second of the Fall’s storms that lashed into Copenhagen. Authorities said it was “unsafe to travel and attempt to go home. And so we decided to stay the night”.

Plenty of room

“The next day, student protests had been planned against the new Study Progress Reform, and so the security guards were on alert. They said to us that it was OK to be there, but asked us to be out in the morning,” the student explained

The security people did not want the sleep-over group to be somehow conflated into the activists’ happenings.

And so the exam period’s social experiment, the making of a ‘home away from home’ began. Now the sleep-in atmosphere has stuck:

Clusters

The KUA2 building has just been opened. And so there is plenty of space to occupy and a whole lot of room to place heads full of knowledge and studying.

When we got there at the end of December, the first thing you notice is that students study in packs.

No matter whether it’s a group or an individual assignment, it is, of course, nice to have someone around you for moral support. So even though many students go there individually, they tend to cluster together. For those that know each other already, or strike up conversations, there is the option of coffee and lunch breaks.

Energy drinks, carrots

KUA2 already has a lot of study perks – sofas, study rooms, canteens, and then there is more.

For example, we noticed a blow-up palm tree, big bouncy balls and a rack full of blankets so you can sit back, wrap yourself in something warm and dream about even warmer holidays that await you after all the hard studying.

Looking at the students studying at the library, some enveloped in blankets, the ultimate saviour for a day at the library seemed to be snacks. Chocolate, candy, cookies, carrots, soda, coffee, energy drinks – you name it. It is as if a sugar rush is keeping them from crashing their heads on to the keyboard.

Home away from home

And then there is the shoes.

Students at the library were putting their legs up all over the place – be it a table, a chair or a sofa. Apparently the letting go of the shoes, is a way to relax, get rid of the feeling of sitting in a public place.

Unless it is an emergency, security no longer lets anyone stay the night. But either way, the library has turned into a home away from home.

Check out our gallery below: Pictures by Alexander Kostrov.

universitypost@adm.ku.dk

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