Students sleep on campus

Students catch up on sleep between classes but also overnight. (Photo by Elliott Miller)

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to spend the night on campus? Have you ever fallen asleep on campus and woken up hours later, sitting in the same groggy spot in the library, wondering how long you have been there? It happens all the time, and famous hashtags on Twitter and Instagram have shown us that #BYUSleeps.

One of BYU’s claims to social media fame is sleeping students. There are so many places on BYU’s campus that students find themselves resting their eyes for a moment before returning to their daily duties and daunting tasks.

“There is a couch that is basically a bed in the basement of the Clyde building,” junior Rebecca Scott shared.

Slumbering students can also be found in study rooms, on the couch in the third floor women’s bathroom in the Wilkinson Center, underneath the display cases and the stairs in the Benson building and on the long couches in the Richards Building’s main floor hallway.

While most BYU students and faculty go home before midnight when buildings close for the night — with the exception of finals week — there are, indeed, students that sleep over on campus quite frequently and there are quite a few different ways they have done it.

One little known secret is the CAEDM Lab in the W. W. Clyde Engineering and Roland A. Crabtree Technology buildings. These labs are for engineering students and the special projects they are assigned in their classes. What most students at BYU don’t know is these labs technically never close. The doors lock at 11 p.m., but students are never kicked out. The following is taken from the CAEDM website:

“The general CAEDM labs are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Students are encouraged not to use the labs on Sunday, but are not prohibited from doing so. Normal hours for the Clyde and Crabtree buildings are 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. You can remain in the buildings after hours, but you will not be able to reenter the building if you leave after 11 p.m. These lab hours are considered an exceptional privilege. Most university labs close at midnight or earlier.”

Mechanical engineering student Blake Trekell spent the night in the CAEDM lab in the Crabtree Technology Building his freshman year.

“I spent about 20 hours on campus,” said Trekell. “I have no idea if that was actually against the rules. … I just assumed you could do it.”

Civil engineering student Cree Farnes had a similar experience.

“I got to campus around 10 p.m. and didn’t leave until 3:30 a.m.,” Farnes said. “When I left, there were still other students in the labs; someone was playing the piano.”

Farnes explained the entire campus was dead as he walked home in the middle of the night. Some lights were on in buildings where custodians were still cleaning, but he did not pass any other students on his way back to his home.

Engineering students taking classes that require the CAEDM labs are given codes and are permitted into these certain labs at any given time, as long as they make it in before 11 p.m.

The second secret is the Daniel H. Wells (ROTC) building. Senior ROTC student Josh Bryant recalls falling asleep in the building located east of the Wilkinson Center.

“Someone woke me up, asked me if I was Army. I said yes, and then we both went back to what we were doing,” Bryant said. “For me, that meant sleeping.”

The last secret doesn’t apply to all of us. Student athletes have been sleeping on campus after hours for decades. Each sport has its own locker room complete with showers and a locker for every athlete. Couches placed in many of the locker rooms and hallways make for a makeshift hotel.

Junior Brittany Critchfield had a “slumber party” of her own in December 2012 during finals week. After a late study session, Critchfield fell asleep in the track and field girls’ locker room.

“I fell asleep at 2 a.m. on one of the couches in the locker room,” Critchfield said. “I was woken up by someone cleaning at 4 a.m. They just woke me up, but they did not make me go home. They just cleaned around me. After they woke me up, I returned to studying for my finals.”

It is no secret that BYU has many facilities that make students’ lives easier: 24-hour labs, excellent student-athlete facilities, a spacious library, showers in the Richards Building, many lockers for rent around campus and, according to many students, a variety of excellent sleeping spaces.

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