International Student Services (ISS)

International Day of Happiness

International Day of Happiness
Wednesday, March 20, 2019
Cancelled due to COVID-19

“Happiness is neither a frivolity nor a luxury. It is a deep-seated yearning shared by all members of the human family.” – UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon 2014

International Day of Happiness is March 20, every year, and forever. The United Nations founded the International Day of Happiness in 2012.

Celebrate International Day of Happiness; stop by our Happy Day booths: 

Here’s what is planned:

  • Happy Day card giveaway - Fill out an appreciation card at our table, and deliver it to the person who improved your life for the better. 
  • Fruit giveaway - snag a healthy snack on your way to class
  • Take an Instagram photo - share and tag ISS @ualbertaiss #happyualberta

Do what makes you happy.

Smile, share, eat healthy, exercise, be grateful, give back, think positive, spend time with friends and family, spend time alone, be mindful, dream, listen to music, say thank you – and mean it, compete, be charitable, say “all the more” instead of “nonetheless” – you get it. Do what makes you happy.

Spread happiness.

While you are doing whatever it is you do that makes you happy, don’t forget to do, whatever you can do, to make others happy! Happiness is contagious. A simple smile can make even a stranger’s day much brighter. Watch the video and see how well happiness can spread!


Tell everybody.

There are more than 7,300,000,000 (that’s 7.3 BILLION+) people on this planet. Each one of them has the right to happiness, and not all of them know it. Tell them. Tell your friends, your family, your neighbours, your co-workers, and your boss – hold your government accountable for securing your happiness. Tell yourself, and remind yourself: happiness is a fundamental human right, and happiness for all is a fundamental human goal. Tell everybody. 

Be a happier student.

There are all sorts of added stressors associated with being a student. Here are some helpful tips to balance your health and happiness with school:

  • Get plenty of sleep - Not getting enough sleep impairs academic performance and makes it harder to get through the day. 
  • Think Positive- Research has shown that positive thinking may improve physical well-being, produce lower feelings of depression and produce lower levels of distress.
  • Have a stress "outlet"- This could be a social activity like going out or participating in intramural sports, finding a hobby or joining a social club.
  • Engage in relaxation techniques- This can include things like slowly counting to ten, meditation, thinking positive thoughts, visualization or playing with a stress ball.
  • Talk to someone- Sometimes just talking about what’s stressful or having someone listen to your problems can drastically reduce stress.

Events across campus celebrating happiness.

Happiness Appreciation Awards

Through acts of appreciation, we can help to increase someone else's happiness levels while increasing our own. Nominate someone who has made you happy, helped you out — or perhaps needs some cheering up — by telling us a quick story of what they have done. They will then be emailed an e-card with their happiness award and your message, to let them anonymously know they brightened someone's day! 

Nominations close Thursday, March 19, 2020.