Another Study Day is in the books at the Chazen Museum of Art
As finals get underway at UW–Madison, more than 1,000 students on Thursday studied in the inspiring, relaxing spaces of the Chazen Museum of Art.
Now in its fourth year, Chazen Study Day brings students into the museum’s galleries and lobbies to enjoy a change of scenery at what can be a stressful time. It started in 2018 and, taking 2020 off due to COVID-19, has drawn around 1,000 students annually.
The Chazen’s Mead Witter Lobby served as Study Day Central, with a half dozen study tables spread out close to other tables arrayed with coffee, fresh fruit, chips, and other goodies. Some students chatted while others intently peered at their laptops and munched on snacks.
Katlyn Alley, 19, of Kenosha, was wrapping up an assignment, preparing for finals, and finishing her application to journalism school. It was her first year at Chazen Study Day. “I love it,” she said. “The lighting is good and even better, the atmosphere is great. And when I need a break, I just go and look at some art.” One of her final assignments was an analysis of the Sifting & Reckoning exhibit. Besides Mead Witter Lobby, students were spread across five galleries, the Object Study Room, the conference room, and Paige Court.
Candie Waterloo, the Chazen’s director of education programs, said staff tried a mix of activities the first year, but interestingly, they weren’t a big hit. “The students didn’t care, they just really wanted to study.”
Things that remain popular: free coffee, snacks, food, and dogs. “The only activity we’ve kept for the last five years is the therapy dogs. Those are always a big hit,” Waterloo said.
This year was no exception. In Paige Court, dozens of students took the chance to cuddle with therapy dogs Millie, Jessie, Olive, and Benny from Dogs On Call. Smiles abounded as they ran their fingers through soft fur, enjoyed tail wags, and even got a few sloppy kisses.
By the end of the day, students had consumed 700 slices of pizza, 150 pounds of fruit, and 150 cups of coffee along with a few hundred cookies, bags of chips, and granola bars.
Nadia Pennella, 19, a biology major from Somers, NY, said she thought the Chazen was a great place to study. “It’s relaxing but also a little lively too, and the natural light is great compared to most study places on campus,” she said.