March 23, 2021
USCHS celebrates International Day of Happiness
Upper St. Clair High School Student Council was all smiles on Monday, March 22, 2021 as it celebrated International Day of Happiness.
Organized by Student Council, high school students had the opportunity to send an electronic card to patients undergoing treatment for cancer and other life-threatening diseases at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital. In exchange for their kindness, students received an Eat’n Park smiley face cookie and a smiley face pin to continue spreading happiness throughout the day.
“Despite Covid, we cannot neglect all other people who need support as well,” junior Kathleen Gianni said. “Our school has a history of supporting kids with cancer through our U-THON fundraising and events. It was a perfect opportunity to work with St. Jude’s and spread happiness outside of our school.”
Dr. Timothy Wagner, Upper St. Clair High School principal, understands the important role that events such as this provide to the school community.
“Celebrating International Day of Happiness was a meaningful way for students to pause to bring joy to others by writing digital notes to individuals at St. Jude's Hospital,” Dr. Wagner said. “Through outreach and acts of care, USCHS students consistently demonstrate that a route to personal happiness is bringing happiness to others — and a smiley cookie is always a welcome treat! I'm proud of our Student Council members and activities office staff for the intentionality around this event.”
Initial planning for the event began last January. Unfortunately, the statewide shutdown began the week before the scheduled event in March 2020 – putting all plans on hold.
“Last year, we wanted this event to simply brighten people's days. This year we had the same goal in mind, however it would ultimately be more important because of everything that we have been through,” junior Anya Ekbote said. “Covid can wear us out; we all needed a pick me up.”
Eat'n Park Hospitality Group generously provided 800 cookies to handout to students, teachers and other high school staff members.
“This event was fun because it was a team effort. If it was not for Eat'n Park's generous donation of Smiley Cookies, it would have looked drastically different,” RJ Shontz, junior class president and event organizer, said. “There were definitely smiles behind all of our masks.”
According to happiness.com, “International Day of Happiness is an annual event organized by the United Nations to promote the idea that feeling happy is a global human right.”