Final Examinations trigger high anxiety and stress.  Over the years, college students have created rituals to relieve this end-of-semester stress.

Dead Day is the time between the end of classes and the beginning of Final Exams. Most university campuses are “dead” during this time, to create a quiet, contemplative atmosphere conducive for final exam preparation.

The NAKED RUN is a Dead Day tradition at many universities.

  • Students at Brown University run through the library, the night before the beginning of exam period, and hand out donuts. Brown University Naked Donut Run
  • The Pundits, a group of senior students at Yale University, run through Bass Library and hand out candy.
  • Mifflin Street is the site for Penn State students to do their naked run.
  • At UC Berkeley, students run naked through Moffitt Library

The PRIMAL SCREAM is a Dead Day  tradition at  Harvard, Vassar, Smith, Michigan State University, Georgia Tech University, the Citadel, Drake University, and Sonoma State University to name a few.  


  • At Columbia University, students open their windows at midnight and scream as loudly as possible on the Sunday of finals week.
  • Students at Stanford University engage in the  “primal scream” tradition by opening the windows in their residence halls and screaming at midnight every night of dead week.
  • Midnight Madness, at Georgia Tech, includes screaming at midnight, and free donuts and energy drinks in the library.
  • At Princeton University,  the period between the end of classes and the beginning of finals is called the “Reading Period” and it lasts from the Monday after classes end to Tuesday of the following week (Dean’s Date). On the night before Dean’s Date, students gather in Holder Courtyard and scream at midnight, a tradition known as the Holder Howl.

The SHOT FAIRIES is a Dead Day  tradition at Dartmouth.

  • At Dartmouth College, the Baker-Berry Library is covertly patrolled by volunteer “shot fairies” who offer drink and good company to students preparing for final exams.

These end of semester rituals are generally harmless and become the stories passed down from each cohort of students at the university, but what if one grievance collector had a sinister plan  to change the meaning of Dead Day ?

Dead Day is the second book in the Grievance Collectors Series.

ebook cover


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