The Final Lap
Successfully cross the end-of-semester finish line! Open to all GW students, The Final Lap is designed to support student wellbeing prior to and during final exams.
Our Final Lap programming will run from May 1st through May 12th, 2023.
Check out our event calendar below!
Good luck with Finals! We're rooting for you!
<3 The Health Promotion & Education Office
May 1st, 3rd, 8th, 9th, & 11th
Kogan Plaza or Vern Quad
Having a mid-afternoon slump? Stop by the HPE table for some yummy snacks to sustain yourself. We'll be on the Vern May 1st and 11th and on Foggy on May 3rd, 8th, and 9th!
No need to register!
Create a positive space for yourself, connect with others, learn new coping tools, and find local resources with the GW Art Therapy Clinic!
Lerner Health and Wellness Center
Multiple Days and Times
Campus Recreation will be offering FREE Group Fitness classes from May 1st through May 7th. Classes range from yoga and pilates, to HIIT and BodyPump. Come take a break from the stress of finals and move with us!
No need to register!
May 2nd & 10th
University Student Center 405
Drop in for a free chair massage provided by a licensed massage therapist from Eye Street Massage Therapy! These individuals are trained massage and bodywork professionals with a therapeutic focus.
No need to register!
University Student Center
3rd Floor Terrace
Join People Animals Love (PAL) in the USC to rejuvenate with some professional therapy pups & enjoy some paws-itivity! Registration is required.
University Student Center
Come join us in the USC for a night of Roller-rink themed fun featuring roller skating, shaved ice, and retro vibes! Roller skates will be provided for attendees.
Join the Argentine Tango Club for free tango lessons! No dance experience expected and no partner required.
May 6th & 7th
Join TRAiLS for an outdoor adventure the weekend before finals! They will be leading trips to Cedar Run, Climb Upton, and a Hains Point Bike Ride.
May 3rd, 10th
3rd floor of The GWU Museum and The Textile Museum
10:30 - 11:30 AM
Join the MSSC and graduate student Shawn Shafner (MFA Social Practice) for an hour-long self-care session dedicated to your whole being. Surrounded by beautiful art, we'll meditate, gently stretch and move, and get our voices vibrating. Open to all bodies and experience levels.
Mindfulness and Mental Health
SilverCloud is the leading virtual care platform for mental health, giving colleges & universities an efficient way to offer their students timely, on-demand, and clinically appropriate care. This platform includes a suite of programs to address the range of mental health challenges students face, from stress, depression and anxiety to insomnia.
- Headspace App
Get Headspace for free, a digital app that offers 1000+ hours of mindfulness and sleep content. Their mini exercises are designed to fit into any busy schedule and are proven to reduce stress in just 10 days.
- 4-7-8 Breathing Exercise
- 5-4-3-2-1 Grounding Exercise
- Maintaining Balance and Prioritizing Your Mental Health at the End of the Semester
Check out these tips from Counseling & Psychological Services, including:
Tips for approaching challenging conversations Tips for maintaining balance and prioritizing your mental health over the holidays Tips for managing stress at the end of the semester
5 Tips for...
- Sleep Hygiene
Consider these 5 tips for your sleep hygiene.
1. Stick to a consistent sleep schedule.
- It is recommended to wake up and go to bed around the same times each day, even on weekends.
- Aim for 7-8 hours of sleep each night. If you need to refresh, take a nap before 3PM for 30 minutes or less.
2. Avoid caffeine later in the day.
- As a general rule, avoid caffeine close to bedtime. If you are sensitive to caffeine, avoid consuming caffeine after lunchtime.
- Avoid alcohol, which can impair sleep quality.
3. Turn off electronics at least 30 minutes before bed.
- Blue light from your phone or computer screen can delay the release of melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone. This can make it harder to fall asleep. Consider using blue light glasses during the day.
- Try using the 30 minutes before bed practice a bedtime ritual (ex. taking a hot shower, reading a book, progressive muscle relaxation).
4. Evaluate your bedroom environment.
- Ensure that your room is dark, free from distractions, and a comfortable temperature.
- Reserve your bed for sleep only. Doing homework or studying in bed can make your body associate your bed with working and make it harder to fall asleep at night.
5. Reflect on your sleep quality.
- Ask yourself:
- Do I wake up rested? If not, why might this be?
- What changes can I make to improve my sleep?
- Sleep issues can be associated with a variety of factors, from medical conditions to mental health concerns. If you need additional support with your sleep habits, consider speaking with a professional in the SHC.
- Stress Management
Consider these 5 tips to manage stress as a student
1. Stay connected with your social supports.
Carve out some time in your routine to talk to a friend, family member, faith leader, or other trusted member of your social circle.
2. Establish a routine and stick with it.
Maintain a routine that has a work-life balance. Include even just a few minutes each day of an activity that brings you joy and contentment.
3. Take time to self-reflect and engage in rest.
Allow yourself the space to process emotions in a way that works for you. (ex. Journaling, talking to a friend, artistic expression)
Consider the value that you place on rest and sleep hygiene practices. Give yourself permission to engage in practices that rejuvenate your mind and body.
When facing a setback, consider: What challenges or changes to plans have I faced in the past? What strengths, mindsets, supports, and strategies helped me through those previous times that I can draw on today?
4. Check out the Self-Help Resource Library.
These resources can help you acquire the skills, attitudes, and knowledge to resolve personal difficulties and day-to-day challenges.
COVID Consideration: CAPS has compiled a list of recommended self-help resources during COVID-19, ranging from podcasts and apps to free and low-cost virtual support.
5. If you find yourself needing additional support, consider reaching out a GW resource.
Attend one of CAPS’ Let’s Talk sessions or a Mental Health Discussion Series sessions. No registration required!
Call 202-994-5300 to make an appointment with CAPS.
If you are concerned about yourself or a friend, submit a CARE Referral to be connected to an appropriate resource on campus.
Consider these 5 tips to manage your nutrition as a college student.
1. Avoid skipping breakfast.
- Start your day with something with protein
- Ex. eggs, yogurt, cottage cheese, nut butters, whole grain carbs
2. Stock up on pantry staples.
- Pantry staples have a long shelf life and can be used in a variety of recipes! Ex. oatmeal, granola, applesauce, and canned veggies
- If you have access to a freezer, stock up on frozen fruits and veggies. They last longer and have a high nutrient content.
- You can get pantry staples from The Store, GW's student-run food pantry.
3. Keep healthy snacks on hand.
- If you have healthy snacks around, you’ll stay fueled throughout the day and be less tempted to grab something else.
- Store these snacks where you can grab them easily, such as at your desk during a study session, or at your bedside.
4. Take time to enjoy and savor your food.
- To make eating feel more like a priority and less like a side task, avoid multitasking while eating.
- Rather than eating a snack while doing homework or studying, take time to give eating your full attention.
5. Use the GW Mobile app and the GET app.
- GW Mobile has a variety of tools to help you plan and budget your meals, find vendors that accept GWorld, and more.
- The GET app can show you your current GWorld balance and how much you can spend per day given that balance.
- Physical Activity
Consider these 5 tips to incorporate physical activity into your routine.
1. Find something you love to do.
- Doing physical activity that makes you feel energized, happy and confident will make you more likely to do it regularly.
- Joyful movement isn't just one thing! It can be walking, running, biking, stretching, dancing, whatever works for you and your body.
2. Visit Lerner Health and Wellness Center.
- Lerner Health and Wellness Center is located at 2301 G St NW.
- It has a variety of equipment, physical activity spaces, a jogging track, a pool, group fitness classes, and more.
- Experiment with all they have to offer and find a physical activity routine that works best for you!
- Follow @gwcampusrec on Instagram for wellness tips, at-home workouts, fitness resources, virtual activities, and more!
3. Set S.M.A.R.T. goals.
- Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Time-bound
- Remember to also listen to your body and its needs.
4. Remember, exercise is just one way to be physically active!
- Enjoy some friendly competition through Intramural and Club Sports.
- Explore the great outdoors on a weekend or extended break trip through the TRAILS program.
- Take a Lifestyle, Sport, and Physical Activity (LSPA) course, which has topics ranging from hiking to fencing to self-defense!
5. Find little ways to incorporate physical activity into your day.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- If you take the metro, consider getting off the train one stop early and walking the rest of the way.
- Take a walk to the monuments with friends, for an #OnlyAtGW experience!
- Connecting with Others
These 5 tips can help you connect with others and strengthen relationships.
1. Create a group chat.
Create a group chat with roommates or an existing group of friends to make plans easily.
Start a weekly tradition, such as coffee dates or Sunday brunch. This will give you something fun to look forward to each week!
2. Connect outside social media.
Find ways to connect that don't involve social media.
Ex. calling a friend or family member, playing a board game, cooking or baking together, attending a group fitness class at Lerner
3. Experiencing FOMO?
Remember to also cultivate a connection with yourself! Find activities that you enjoy on your own.
If you experience FOMO (fear of missing out) when you scroll through social media, consider taking a break from it altogether.
4. Join a club or organization at GW.
GW has hundreds of clubs and organizations surrounding a variety of causes and interests.
Join an organization to meet people with similar interests and passions.
5. Attend one of GW's many campus traditions and events.
Participate in a campus tradition like Vern Harvest, Midnight Breakfast, GW Late Night, or Chalk-In.
Give back to the community through the Nashman Center's many service programs.
Attend a community or cultural event hosted by the MSSC.
- Alcohol Risk Reduction
These 5 tips can reduce the negative impacts of alcohol.
1. Check in with yourself.
- If you're feeling hungry, angry, lonely, or tired, consider not drinking, as these states can heighten the negative impacts of alcohol.
- It might be tempting to end the day with a glass of wine or a cold beer to unwind, but try limiting drinking to weekends and opting for a non-alcoholic drink during the week.
2. Don't drink on an empty stomach.
- If you do decide to drink, eat a carb- and protein-heavy meal beforehand.
3. Alternate between alcohol and water.
- Alcohol causes your body to lose water. Stay hydrated by alternating your drinks with water.
- Leave a large water bottle by your bedside to drink before you go to sleep.
4. Keep track of how much you drink.
- The body processes one standard drink per hour.
- Set a limit beforehand for how much you will drink, and try to avoid drinking games.
Standard Drink Sizes
- Liquor: 1.5 oz.
- Wine: 5 oz.
- Beer: 12 oz.
5. Don't feel like drinking?
- That's okay! If you don't want to drink but still want to be social, just hold a cup of soda. Nobody will know the difference.
- If a friend tells you they aren't drinking, offer them a cup of soda or water instead.
- Sexual Health
Consider these 5 tips for your sexual health and well-being.
1. Know yourself!
- Are you interested in sex? If so, what types of sex are you interested in? What are you comfortable with? What are you not comfortable with?
- Your comfort level, desires, and beliefs surrounding sex may change over time, and that’s okay! Healthy sexuality is about learning and exploration.
2. Be open to talking with your partner(s) about sex.
- Before getting involved sexually, talk to your partner(s) about what you’re comfortable with. Maintain open communication and respect boundaries.
- Make sure consent is present before engaging in sex.
3. Prepare to have safer sex.
- Consider which sexual health barriers you will use. Avoid storing safer sex supplies where they could be damaged (ex. in your wallet, in your car).
- Use a new barrier every time you have vaginal, anal, or oral sex.
- When considering safer sex supplies, think about:
How does it fit into your lifestyle?
How effective is it at preventing pregnancy?
Will it prevent STIs?
How much will it cost?
4. If you are sexually active, make it a habit to get tested for HIV and STIs;
- Every time you have a new sexual partner
- If you notice any changes in your body
- If you had sex with someone who has had an STI
- If you have had sex without a condom
5. Get regular medical care.
- Be honest with your medical care provider about your sexual health. Ask them if you should be screened for STIs and HIV.
- Talk with your health care provider about PrEP and PEP to determine if these are appropriate options for you to prevent HIV.
Make an appointment with the Student Health Center for your sexual health needs.
Request free safer sex supplies for your organization, department, or residence hall. Or, grab some from the SHC front desk during normal business hours!
Learn more about the LGBTQIA+ Resource Center.
Download the 5 Tips for Sexual Health handout
Thank You to Our Partners!
We extend our sincerest gratitude to our campus partners for their continued support of The Final Lap!
Campus Living & Residential Education
Counseling & Psychological Services
Office of Advocacy and Support