AMHERST (AP) – Amherst College is asking students to give up their laptops, smart phones and iPods, even if it’s just for a few minutes.

The liberal arts college is holding Amherst Unplugged on Friday to raise awareness about the potentially harmful effects of excessive technology use.

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Assistant Dean of Students Debra Krumholz, a career adviser and work-life balance consultant, came up with the idea after seeing how stressed out students were and the pressure they were under to keep connected.

She says students are “overscheduled, overprogrammed and overwhelmed.”

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The goal is to get undergraduates away from their screens and keyboards and the associated information overload and experience the benefits of “down time” in their day.

Students can unplug for 15 minutes, an hour or more if they wish.

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