Using a campus iBelong grant, University of North Carolina Greensboro (UNCG) staff member Matt Fisher and the students he works with are spreading the “Thanks for Being a Good Human” message throughout the institution. They create art pieces in a campus makerspace with the message and then hand them out to UNCG community members as an act of kindness.

Fisher runs the Student Educator Learning Factory (SELF) Design Studio in the School of Education. He had a need for connection during the pandemic, reported Campus Life News, and then started laser engraving magnets to distribute to people at concerts.

“It was awesome, but then I realized I wanted to do it every day,” Fisher told Campus Life. “So, I was at my computer and the phrase ‘thanks for being a good human’ came to mind, thinking about what I would say to someone to just appreciate them. It changed how I looked at the world, so instead of looking around and seeing things that are depressing and out of my control, I look for people doing kind things just randomly out of the blue.”

He now works with a group every week to continue making items beyond just magnets. Biology major Alex Nolan helps create felt flowers as well as key chains, bracelets and bottle caps. She remembers the feeling of being a transfer student at UNCG when Fisher handed her a magnet. “It just made my day so much better,” she told Campus Life News.

Fisher originally received an iBelong grant for the “Thanks for Being a Good Human” project during the 2022-23 year and was awarded another to keep it going in 2023-24. “I wanted to create as much joy and happiness for as many people as possible,” he said. “It’s nice to have the feeling that you made someone’s day.”

Sources: Campus Life News, UNC Greensboro, 1/10/23 and 4/12/24

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