Geisel Renovation to Include New Crying Booths in Response to Rising Mental Health Concerns


Written by: Karina Yu

Pitt said, “This whole time, I thought CBT stood for Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Now I know it stands for Crying Booth Treatment.”
Photo by Julia Wong

Throughout May, which is National Mental Health Month, many students have anticipated a campus response addressing rising concerns for student wellbeing. After a long wait, the UCSD Planning, Design and Construction Department has announced plans to make further renovations to the famous Geisel Library in hopes of quelling student anger.

Reinvigorated conversation about student mental health began after user u/book_of_revelleations’s recent post on the UCSD subreddit. The user stated, “Given that this institution is concerned with being at the forefront of innovation, it’s honestly disheartening to see the lackluster response to student mental health. It takes months to get genuine help in response to mental health crises, and even then, it is impossible to get consistent, quality treatment. The best things UCSD ever did for mental health were introducing therapy fluffies and existing in a state where weed is legal. Can’t wait to see what the school does for Mental Health Month, but I won’t be setting my expectations all that high.”

As hopes mounted, UCSD released a public statement. “Geisel is the gem of UCSD, and it’s important that it represents our beliefs as a community,” UCSD spokesperson George Germain stated in an interview. “For a long time, the library has represented innovation and creativity, but now we want to acknowledge the mental health of our students. UCSD plans to add an extension to the eighth floor — Jacobs School of Engineering–style — dedicated to innovative, cutting-edge crying booths.”

Each crying booth will feature a tissue box, a wooden stool, glass pane walls, and a sink with a mirror for you to play out your “nonspecific Oscar-nominated crying-in-front-of-the-mirror-while-fixing-your-dramatic-makeup scene,” according to Germain. “We considered giving the booths opaque, soundproof walls, but recent research has shown that nothing fuels students to study better than the sounds of their brethren crying a few feet away. With finals season approaching, we thought it would be better to make sure the sobs of your classmates that couldn’t hack it would provide ample fuel to study for that three hour MATH 20C final.”

The renovations have garnered various responses from students across campus. Senior CS major Greg Grenville stated in an interview, “Man, we just wanted to smoke weed on campus without our downstairs neighbors calling campus security. And maybe for some teachers to stop being absolute dicks. I mean, how is my mental health supposed to remain intact when my prof tells me that maybe I’m just ‘not smart enough’ when I ask a question about the homework? But I guess crying booths work too.”

“I mean, every student cries at least once a quarter,” sophomore history major Hester Pitt stated. “And if they say they haven’t, they’re lying to you. If the school can promise that the tissue boxes are always stocked and that they’re not that scratchy grocery brand, then I’m game. It’s better to cry in Geisel than on a bench outside Peterson Hall. Public crying would feel a bit more, say, dignified, if it was on purpose, in a booth for all of the eighth floor to hear.”

According to the UCSD spokesperson, renovations are expected to take place “ASAP” to ensure booths are available in time for finals week. “I’ve heard some worry about renovations shutting down the library for studying, so I wanted to clear the air: a little construction has never stopped UCSD from continuing to hold classes. We just want to remind students that to study in Geisel over the next few weeks, they will be required to wear a hard hat and construction vest.”

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