U of U students grieving over finals find ‘cry closet’ in library

Apr 25, 2018, 12:51 PM
University of Utah Senior creates “The Cry Closet” for a class project...
University of Utah Senior creates "The Cry Closet" for a class project

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah—Finals week officially began Wednesday at the University of Utah with the end of classes, and students who passed through the J. Willard Marriott Library encountered an unexpected space to help them cope with their testing anxiety.

“The Cry Closet” stood in the middle of a busy passageway, ready to greet stressed-out students.

“I think everyone just needs a safe space sometimes—even if it’s in a very public place,” said the artist behind it, senior student Nemo Miller.

Rules for The Cry Closet

The front appeared as if it was cut out of a wall, and the inside space was covered with soft materials and filled with stuffed animals and toys.

Miller created 400-lb stand-alone closet for a class project.

Rules posted to The Cry Closet instructed students to knock before entering, to only go in alone and to limit time spent there to no more than 10 minutes.

Tuesday night, word had already quickly spread around the school through social media and the hash tag, #cryclosetuofu.

Several students stopped by to check The Cry Closet out and spend some time inside.

“I just kind of thought it was funny,” said Christian Hoole.

Stuart Hamill described the closet as “creepy.”

“I mean, it’s like a creepy closet with creepy stuffed animals,” Hamill laughed.

Other students, including Corinne Doerner, said they appreciated the concept behind the functional art piece.

“My favorite place to cry is the shower, so I’ll probably use that before the closet, but I like the idea,” Doerner said.

Miller was in disbelief Tuesday night over the large response the project was getting.

“I’m like, ‘oh my God,’ what’s happening right now?” she exclaimed.

Miller said The Cry Closet would remain in place through the end of finals.

Commencement at the University of Utah is scheduled on May 3.

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U of U students grieving over finals find ‘cry closet’ in library