Therapy cat program to help students with exam stress


*Disclaimer: This article is from The Brock Press’ 2018 satire publication, which followed the theme of ‘fake news’ meant to bring humour to our readers. All quotes are attributed to made up characters.

Stress relief will be coming to Brock students this exam season in the form of angry, unimpressed middle-aged cats. In a program run by Brock’s Student Health Services, Brock University Students’ Union and the regional St. John’s Ambulance, a room will be available to students in Mackenzie Chown Q-Block where they can visit with local cats to help relax and de-stress during exams. The program will run every day from now until the end of the exam period in MCQ 369 from 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m.

The ‘therapy cat’ program is a spinoff of earlier programs run by BUSU and St. John’s Ambulance to feature a ‘puppy room’ on campus. In previous years and semesters, therapy dogs were brought to locations on campus such as Pond Inlet so that students could spend time with the dogs and relieve angst during finals. However, the groups involved thought it would be more appropriate instead to bring in therapy cats this year.

Kelly McPersonnachat, the director of the program, spoke about the new additions to the program to help students through exam stress.

“I think that bringing in these cats is really going to help people on campus,” Personnachat explained. “What we really didn’t anticipate was some of the cats maybe not be adjusting to the surroundings in the most helpful way for students and faculty.”

At press time, several of the cats had left MCQ 369 to wander throughout the infamously confusing hallways of Mackenzie Chown. The design of the building did not seem to successfully thwart the cats’ attempts to reach other parts of campus. Several cats were found in Thistle Hall lecture rooms, in seminars in Plaza, and even greeting students in Zone 1 parking.

Reactions towards the presence of cats on campus were varied; several students seemed very pleased by the presence of the cats at Brock, which seemed to be satisfying the idea behind the program.

Others seemed to be less impressed, to put it mildly. Sebastian Jaghatadur was one of several students who was allegedly were attacked by one or more of the felines.

“I wish Brock had better thought this through before they started the program,” Jaghatadur said as he tended to a large cat scratch on his arm. “Some of us are allergic to these things, you know.”

For those interested in being a part of the program, please visit MCQ 369 for more information.

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