"Kindness is being friendly, generous, and considerate to others and yourself. Being kind often requires courage and strength, as it involves the willingness to celebrate and give attention to someone else. It is also about giving honest feedback when doing so is helpful to the other person. Moreover, kindness includes acting and speaking in a compassionate way to others and yourself. However, do not confuse kindness with weakness. You can be kind and still have boundaries. It is not a replacement for avoiding difficult conversations or standing up for yourself. Just be kind when you are in those situations. Consider, 'how would I want to be treated if I was in X situation?'"
Yes, kindness is our thing in Student Affairs at Michigan Tech. November is normally World Kindness Day, and one of the last decisions of 2022 made by the Student Affairs Leadership Team was to extend ongoing and intentional kindness into the entire year of 2023.
Throughout the year, we will intentionally, unapologetically, and unabashedly talk about, promote, embrace, celebrate, model, teach, and make decisions anchored in kindness. We ask the campus community to add other voices and acts of kindness to our efforts.
The idea of kindness can also be integrated into class activities, residence hall conversations, retreats, leadership meetings, editorial pieces, communication designs, press releases, visual images, staff meetings, and RSO student activities with very little to no impact on what we’re already doing as an institution. We can also build on and highlight existing efforts (e.g., charitable and service efforts occurring especially within student organizations).
Who can participate in this initiative?
Everyone can participate in The Kindness at Michigan Tech Initiative.
How can we model and celebrate kindness at Tech?
- Model self-kindness and kindness toward others for the team
- Talk about importance of kindness in our work
- Reaffirm the importance of grace and kindness in decision-making
- Create time and space for team members to talk about kindness
- Encourage a team member to share something read, learned, observed, or experienced that is related to kindness
- Support time off for team members to engage in service
- Encourage team to participate in annual Make a Difference Day service activities
- Recognize and celebrate kindness
- Submit your perspective on the power of kindness to the Michigan Tech Kindness Blog
- Link the Kindness at Tech website to your website
- Post a social media message
- Write a short essay for the new Michigan Tech Kindness Blog
- Order and display in your office, building, or room, one or more "HuskyUP" posters
- Write your colleagues, friends, or family members about Kindness at Tech
- Talk about the importance of kindness in your space
- Promote kindness on t-shirts or materials you purchase for your staff, office, or organization
- Create and purchase buttons that promote kindness (e.g., beKIND, doKIND, stayKIND, liveKIND, inspireKindness)
- Class assignments and research projects related to kindness
- Round-Robin, one response to: "How do you model self-kindness?"
- Round-Robin, one response to: "How do you model kindness towards others?"
- Guest lecturers to talk about the power of kindness
- Guest lecturers to talk about the impact of kindness on wellbeing
- Incorporate acts of kindness or aspects of kindness into service-learning activities
- See and speak to each other by saying "What's up?," "Good morning," "Thank you," "Please," or "You're welcome."
- Smile at someone
- Just ask someone "How's your day going?"
- Make your wellbeing a priority
- Ask for help and help others
- Acknowledge the work and service of others
- Send someone a surprise complimentary note or card
- Participate in Tech's annual Make a Difference Day Service activities
- Follow-through on self-help practices
- Give to charity
- Wipe snow off of cars (for example: Tech parking lots)
- Check in on people you haven't seen or heard from in a long time
- Create a charity initiative for yourself or your organization
- See what help a senior citizen, veteran, or disabled person needs
- Hold the door for someone
- Pick someone up who has fallen
- Volunteer for a Tech event
- Shovel a neighbor's driveway or doorway or part of a sidewalk
- Help someone carry groceries
- Ask someone if they need a ride
- Surprise someone and pay for their gas or meal or part of their groceries
- Do something nice for a local community agency or business owner
- Surprise people with a random act of kindness
- Have a meal with a person a you haven't met before
- Sit with a person you've never sat with before
- Invite people into your conversation
Resources Related to Kindness
Research Related to Kindness
- A systematic review and meta-analysis of the effects of performing acts of kindness
- Compassion and the science of kindness
- Happy people become happier through kindness
Blogs and Other Resources Related to Kindness
Monthly Dates for Some Extra Special Kindness
7th National Send a Card to a Friend Day
11th National Make a Friend Day
14th - 17th National Random Acts of Kindness Week
17th National Random Acts of Kindness Day
17th National No One Eats Alone Day
13th National Good Samaritan Day
No dates available
16th National Do Something Good for a Neighbor Day
31st National Smile Day
1st National Say Something Nice Day
15th National Give Something Away Day
8th National Happiness Happens Day
17th National Nonprofit Day
27th National Just Because Day
No dates available
5th National Do Something Nice Day
28th National Make a Difference Day
30th National Speak Up for Service Day
13th National Kindness Day
15th National Philanthropy Day
28th National Day of Giving #Giving Tuesday
26th National Thank You Note Day
Free HuskyUP Posters
The HuskyUP posters are available to anyone. Inspired by President Koubek and Board Chair Jeff Littman, Student Affairs partnered with University Relations and Enrollment, Office of the Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion, and the Provost’s Office to develop a “HuskyUP” informational campaign that promotes respect and civility in our interactions with each other.
The major initiative included creating several HuskyUP posters and yard signs to be posted around campus each with a unique meaning on what HuskyUP means. HuskyUP means:
- Respect: Treat others with respoect and others will respect you.
- Belonging: You belong here. We are all Huskies.
- Community: Alone we can do so little, but together we can do so much.
- Kindness: We rise by lifting others.
- Caring: Just treat people with compassion.
- Family: What divides up pales in comparison to what unites us.
- Listening: One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.
- Civility: Civility is the art and act of caring for others.
To request free posters for your office or yard signs, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Yard signs will return to campus when the snow stops accumulating. Supplies are limited. For the posters, you may request one poster, multiple posters, or a full pack of eight posters which includes one of each of the above.
Share Your Thoughts
If you wish to share thoughts or resources about promoting, celebrating, and modeling the Kindness at Michigan Tech initiative, please contact email@example.com.