It appears as though the University of Michigan gets it: a short nap can dramatically increase an individual’s performance. This why the university library is now offering “napping stations” for students.

“Sleep depravation has been shown to have a negative effect on academic performance. Students are welcome to use these stations to take a break nap while studying,” says a sign located in front of a row of cots and pillows in the UM library. See photo.

The first napping station was launched just weeks ago, and there are now plans in the works to incorporate lockers where students can stash their personal items while they catch a few Zzz’s.

But why put a nap station in the library?

“Like the library’s recent switch to 24/7 service during the school year, the nap station was an idea proposed by students. Central Student Government (CSG) representatives started by surveying over 4,000 students, finding out what they valued most in a potential designated nap space, and found that the top priorities were proximity to study areas and classes, making the library a natural partner. CSG also brought in the expertise of UM professor and sleep researcher Shelley Hershner, M.D., who helped make the case that improving student sleep habits, even in such a small way as providing a designated space to nap, could benefit student health and performance,” according to Library Journal.

Advocates for the nap space hope it will serve as a way to educate students about the health dangers posed by pulling all-nighters or consistently operating on too little sleep. “We want to raise awareness of the detrimental impact of sleep deprivation on student health,” said CSG representative Adrian Bazbaz. “We take a lot of precaution over alcohol abuse, drug abuse, depression, but we haven’t tried to tackle this health issue on campus before.”

As with anything, there are rules to using the nap station… naps are limited to 30 minutes, cots must be cleaned after use, and sick people – just go home.

Now, if we could just get our boss to approve something like this for the radio station!