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The sweet, furry approach some colleges are taking to ease students' stress is brilliant.

Spend some time with a pooch before a big final? Yes, please!

The sweet, furry approach some colleges are taking to ease students' stress is brilliant.
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Petfinder

Being a college student comes with a lot of stress.

It involves the rigors of adulting practically on your own combined with a heavy workload, cramming your brain full of facts, trying to have a social life, and managing parents' expectations, all often topped off with worry about how you're going to pay off this expensive education.

It's a lot.


GIF from "Legally Blonde."

The hardest part for some students? They don't have a dog or cat to cuddle with like they might have had at home — and if you're a pet parent, you know just how good a de-stresser that is.

Enter adopted pets. Like Dakota.

Good dog. GIF via WTNH/YouTube.

Dakota's outlook wasn't great, reports WTNH. When she was found, Dakota was chained to a pole, awaiting euthanization.

But a local organization called TLC Sweet Souls scooped her up, trained her to become an emotional support dog, and placed her with Fairfield University in Connecticut.

Now, just as she was rescued, she gets to rescue others.

“Just seeing the dog while I am going to class or coming home from work — it is a piece of home and comfort I get to see everyday,” says sophomore student Olivia Stuart.

Who is saving whom?! GIF via WTNH/YouTube.

Look at how much joy and love she gives to the students, me, the staff, and everyone. It is perfect. It is beautiful,” said nursing professor Carole Pomarico.

Multiple colleges across the countries are doing things just like this.

And with depression and anxiety plaguing college students in a pretty fierce way, this is an idea whose time has come.

A program at University of Minnesota, Pet Away Worry and Stress (PAWS), welcomes students every Wednesday afternoon to spend some quality time with a variety of therapy animals — dogs, bunnies, chickens, and more.

GIF via USA Today.

And that's not the only program out there. Sacramento State students started a club called Pets for Stress, which also "borrows" therapy animals for special visits throughout the year.

GIF via Chou Chou Briard.

The benefits from these programs are both instantaneous and potentially lasting.

First, the opportunity to be a therapy dog can sometimes change the life of adoptable pets in shelters.

And the benefit to students is worthwhile. From The State Hornet:

“It's just amazing how connected a human and an animal can be. I can spend hours with them having a blast and feel less anxious or stressed." — Sacramento State student Jessica Decoque

And Rebecca Johnson, who oversees the Research Center for Human/Animal Interaction at the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine, says that studies are beginning to focus on how engaging with pets can increase a person's level of oxytocin. As she told NPR:

"That is very beneficial for us. Oxytocin helps us feel happy and trusting."

That's why puppies can reach almost anybody!

GIF from "Parks and Recreation."

Pets with all kinds of secret skills are just waiting to be found and give their love and support.

If your school doesn’t have a Pet for Stress program yet, ask a local shelter if you can visit and spend time with some animals. You’ll de-stress both you and the pets.

Could the source of your emotional support be just a click away? You can use Petfinder to find a shelter close to you!

We can only hope this idea gets shared far and wide and becomes a trend on college campuses across America. Students deserve to relax and connect, and therapy animals thrive on getting to do their jobs!

Warning: If you watch this short clip, you may be inspired to start a group like this at your own local college!


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A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.

Acts of kindness and compassion are always inspiring. A veterinarian gave a different spin on the phrase "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em".

The poor little pup in this video walked into this shelter with a history of being abused. He was so traumatized that he wasn't eating. The vet treating him wasn't sure what to do, so he decided to book a table for two: a the dog's place. It is not clear whether he got an official invite from the canine in question, but he felt pretty safe about showing up unannounced. He walked into the cage and sat down next to the dog. With his back up against the corner of his new (and hopefully temporary) domain, the rescue stared apprehensively at his human guest. The vet presented a dog dish with food and put it in front of the dog. The frightened pup just looked at the dish and made no attempt to eat. Then he broke out another dog dish identical to the one he just gave to his four-legged patient and started eating out of that bowl. And then came the turning point.


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A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.
Anne Owens and Luke Redito / Wikimedia Commons
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When Madeline Swegle was a little girl growing up in Burke, VA, she loved watching the Blue Angels zip through the sky. Her family went to see the display every time it was in town, and it was her parents' encouragement to pursue her dreams that led her to the U.S. Naval Academy in 2017.

Before beginning the intense three-year training required to become a tactical air (TACAIR) pilot, Swegle had never been in an aircraft before; piloting was simply something she was interested in. It turns out she's got a gift for it—and not only is she skilled, she finds the "exhilaration to be unmatched."

"I'm excited to have this opportunity to work harder and fly high performance jet aircraft in the fleet," Swegle said in a statement released by the Navy. "It would've been nice to see someone who looked like me in this role; I never intended to be the first. I hope it's encouraging to other people."

As Swegle's story shows, representation and equality matter. And the responsibility to advance equality for all people - especially Black Americans facing racism - falls on individuals, organizations, businesses, and governmental leadership. This clear need for equality is why P&G established the Take On Race Fund to fight for justice, advance economic opportunity, enable greater access to education and health care, and make our communities more equitable. The funds raised go directly into organizations like NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, YWCA Stand Against Racism and the United Negro College Fund, helping to level the playing field.

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Do you know that guy who has never had an issue with his TV/internet provider? Neither do I. If you claim you have never had issues with your bill going up without warning, then you are either lying or you own the cable company. Jake Lawson apparently does not own a cable company, and was prepared to communicate his frustrations regarding his bill in a most creative way.

First off, Jake understands what everyone should realize. The customer service representative doesn't own the cable company either, so yelling at someone who is just trying to make a living like all of us is not the answer. Their job is hard enough as it is so give them a break. Jake gave them more than a break. He gave them a song.


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