Weber State students, Ogden City leaders promote civility
OGDEN, Utah — Students at Weber State University are partnering with the city of Ogden on a campaign to, put it simply, make the world a better place. Each year, the students take on a cause or topic of public concern, and promote the idea with various events and activities.
This year’s theme: civility — being nice to people and doing nice things. One way the students are spreading that idea is with a series of cards, about the size of playing cards, with special messages or “Civility Quests” on them. For example, one reads: “Pick up 10 pieces of trash in your community,” and another says, “Introduce yourself to three random people today.” There are 20 messages in all.
“So basically, we’re just trying to get people to think about what civility means to you, and there are these quests on these cards and they’re really easy to do,” Civility Quest organizer Teresa Martinez said Friday.
Each year, the university takes on a specific topic that’s of public interest to promote and to raise awareness. “Civility” just seemed like a natural fit this time.
“It kind of seemed to fit for the upcoming year,” Martinez said. “Not necessarily what was happening in the political arena, but more because we are noticing behaviors that needed to be introduced again.”
During the past year, the campaign also featured various signs posted across the Weber State University campus with messages re-enforcing the “civility” theme.
“It’s getting people out there and doing little tiny acts of civility to make the world a better place,” Weber State student Jessica Cairo said. “Whether that’s picking up trash, or opening a door for someone, saying thank you, saying you’re welcome. It doesn’t take much. It may seem silly, but it can make a difference to someone. It can make a difference to your world, because you know that change begins with you,” she said.
After a person does what’s listed on the card, the cards are then passed along to someone else and so on. Over time, those cards and those messages will spread throughout the entire community. We all do nice things for others on a daily basis without even thinking about it. This “Civility Quest” campaign is designed to make sure we all continue to do that.
“The point is to learn about what civility is. What it is to you, for the community, for the environment,” Martinez said.
Participants in the challenge can collect and complete Civility Quest Challenge cards from local businesses around Ogden, download them online from weber.edu/ccel.els.html or follow @wsuccel on social media for daily updates.
The City of Ogden will also issue a proclamation on April 12, to mark “World Civility Day.”
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