Georgetown Students for More Hammocks, a student-led movement for more hammocks on campus, began last semester with an ethics project in professor Jason Brennan’s “Moral Foundations of Market Society” class in the McDonough School of Business. With the assignment to, “do something good with $1,000,” a group of eight students worked to install three hammocks on campus, a way to create a small but well-meaning change in the lives of Georgetown students. As students sought to continue the efforts begun with this project, Georgetown Students for More Hammocks was born earlier this year.
Seeking to build on the progress of a recent class project, the initiative represents the potential real-world impact of students’ academic work and is a welcome respite from the daily stresses of life at Georgetown.
The work thus far — and continued efforts — of this group clearly demonstrates the potential impact of a group of motivated, engaged students. In collaboration with the Office of Design and Construction, the students have already examined the often-overlooked consequences of hammock installation. For example, as the group noticed, the installation of new hammocks by the university is designed reduce the risk of damaging the trees on campus, as often happens when students try to hang their own hammocks.
A petition launched earlier this month on the group’s Facebook page, which has already amassed more than 200 likes, signifying broad-based student support for the initiative. Regardless of whether one is interested in the hammocks, the community should rally behind these students who are striving to better our campus and promote a simple manner of combatting stress culture.
Moreover, this student-led initiative for campus improvement is laudable, particularly given its philanthropic nature. This project exemplifies the potential of students’ academic work to benefit the community outside of the classroom. Both the initial concept for the project and the ongoing push for more hammocks demonstrate a desire to improve the lives of Georgetown students in a meaningful and thoughtful, if modest, way.
Additionally, the work of Georgetown Students for More Hammocks represents a much-needed divergence from the stress culture that strongly dominates Georgetown. Though it may seem like a trivial impact, this initiative is a breath of fresh air on our constantly bustling campus.
In a community of students often so narrowly focused on opportunities for the future, this group allows students to take advantage of the present — to lie back, admire the sky, take a breath and engage in something for the sake of relaxation rather than for advancement. The push to install more hammocks, and thus to more actively foster space for relaxation on our campus, is a sign of our community’s commitment to self-care, even amid our busy lives.
To get involved, all one has to do is sign the petition to demonstrate support.
This editorial board lauds the work of Georgetown Students for More Hammocks and supports the group in its push for a campus with more hammocks. Whether or not the group ultimately succeeds in increasing the number of on-campus hammocks, it has shown the power of student initiative and has effectively emphasized the importance of relaxation on our ever-busy campus. Though the movement may have begun in jest, the impact of Georgetown Students for More Hammocks is real and tangible and benefits the whole of the Georgetown community.