Law School Hosts Finals Pop-Up Coffee Shop

by Madiha Malik 

On May 5, “Legal Grounds,” UConn Law School’s first pop-up coffee shop, will be making its debut in Starr Reading Room, complete with a traveling barista.

William Shurtz of Vagabond Barista is a self-proclaimed coffee artist whose energy and enthusiasm for coffee is sure to set the mood at the main finals event for spring 2014 finals week.

Along with a traveling barista, the coffee shop will include painting sessions hosted by Muse Paintbar, said Assistant Director of Student Services Jennifer Cerny.  Muse Paintbar will hold four 20-minute painting sessions for 15 students each session to help students de-stress, said Cerny.

Legal Grounds will be furnished by Yogibo, a beanbag furniture company, who will provide seating at the coffee shop, adding to the relaxing yet fun atmosphere. The coffee shop will have music to set the mood and a healthy snack bar hosted by the newly restarted UConn Law Health Interest Law Group (HILG), according to Cerny. Outgoing SBA President and 3L, Jess Signor originally proposed the idea and says the event is meant to be both relaxing and fun for students.

“It’s an opportunity before finals for everyone to get together, relax for a bit, take a deep breath from everything that they’re doing, and enjoy some time with their classmates,” said Signor.  According to Cerny, Legal Grounds will be replacing the Faculty Student Midnight Breakfast as a response to student feedback, which suggested the inclusion of a larger community event for finals week.

“We are changing it up this year and trying to see if one larger community event makes more sense than spreading it out over a week of small events,” says Cerny.  Compared to the Faculty Student Midnight Breakfast, according to Signor, Legal Grounds will be a longer event that can be a lunchtime and evening activity for both day and evening students, giving it more of a community feel. Although the breakfast will no longer take place this semester, other traditional finals week events  such as Tails of Joy therapy dogs, will remain in place. The idea of exam week, according to Cerny, has been to promote wellness and stress relief for students.

“Hopefully, [Legal Grounds is] just a place that students can come and take a break from studying, see a friend, sit on loungey furniture, listen to some music, have an amazing cup of coffee, and unwind and dig into their studies again,” said Cerny.

Legal Grounds will be open on May 5, in Starr Reading Room from 12:30 to 6pm, in an attempt to accommodate both day and evening students.  According to Signor, the event is geared towards appealing to a wider range of students and is free of charge, courtesy of Student Services.