Happy Humans help students stay positive

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Blacksburg, Va., May 3 – VT Happy Humans at the Finals Extravaganza: Students stop at the booth for free pizza, candy, and to write what their happy place is on a white board for the VT Happy Humans to share on social media. Photo: Ashley Cimino

by Ashley Cimino, David Jones —

The Happy Humans at Virginia Tech are known for hosting a variety of events around campus to put smiles on the faces of students and faculty on campus. Co-leaders Jayne Ross, Jojo Kidane, and Lauren Ritchie participated in the Finals Extravaganza on the Drillfield to ease the stress of students passing by.

According to the New York Times, there is a “record-level of stress” found in college students, but specifically in college freshman, many of who face stress, anxiety, and depression before even coming into college. In light of this fact, the Happy Humans aim to bring just a bit of positivity to the Virginia Tech campus with small actions that can turn around a student’s day. 

This year, the Happy Humans asked Hokies to share where they were most happy. Common responses included “in my bed” or “with a dog,” and students hinted that this would be where they retreated to as soon as the summer officially begins. While the Happy Humans mostly cater towards students, some of their best events have targeted the dining hall workers on campus.

Last semester, the Happy Humans gathered in front of the Pylons to write “thank you” notes to dining hall employees and they later met to personally distribute them.

“That was a really important event for them because the first time they tried it, I think the semester before last, they got an overwhelmingly positive response,” said Jacob Long, Vice President of Service for a service fraternity that Happy Humans operates under.  

Though small, the group has garnered a lot of positive attention. During an event last semester, the VTPD Chief of Police, Kevin Faust, stopped by their booth in front of Squires Student Center to take a photo with the group and to commend them for their efforts in keeping Virginia Tech and Blacksburg a happy place to work and live.

Happy Humans Audio Slideshow from Ashley Cimino on Vimeo.

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