On Friday, Oct. 7, Worcester State University will participate in World Smile Day.
The holiday was established by Worcester native Harvey Ball—creator of the smiley face in 1963—in 1999 after becoming concerned that his famous creation had become too commercialized. Since then, on the first Friday of October every year, participants are challenged to help one person smile by performing an act of kindness.
World Smile Foundation Trustee and Managing Director Charlie P. Ball—Harvey’s son—noted the importance of improving morale and dealing with burnout in workplaces after more than two years of the COVID-19 pandemic. “Times are hard,” he said, citing the strain on essential workers and the staffing and resource shortages that have affected many businesses. Workers, he said, are “taking on some of the most demanding pressures our workforce has ever experienced. To us, it seems like it might be time for the hard workers of the central Massachusetts community to get a smile.”
“We’re all about offering a welcoming and inclusive experience at Worcester State,” President Barry M. Maloney said. “So on World Smile Day—and hopefully every day—everyone will pass that smile along, from one Lancer to the next!”
Smiley face stickers will be available in most departments throughout campus and at the Library and the Information Desk in the Student Services Center. All members of the Worcester State community are encouraged to take the challenge and to tag their friends on social media with #worldsmiledaychallenge or #wsdchallenge to encourage even more acts of kindness—and more smiles.
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