Arcadia High School Students Raise Awareness for Mental Health

Arcadia High School students leave positive notes during Thoughtful Thursday, the fourth event of the week.

Arcadia High School students leave positive notes during Thoughtful Thursday, the fourth event of the week.- Courtesy photo

By Sarah Wang

Well, well, well! Arcadia High School’s (AHS) many student-run clubs and organizations spread the wellness around campus this past week at the high school’s second annual Wellness Week campaign. Chaired by AHS’ resident disability awareness club Voices of Ability, the week’s festivities were all in an effort to raise awareness for mental health and its importance in an environment as notoriously competitive as AHS. With months of planning and the help of hundreds of students, teachers, and parents, the AHS Apaches managed to pull off a spectacular week of fun, food, and positivity for the betterment of the school’s social environment as a whole.

To keep things upbeat and lively, Wellness Week’s coordinators planned different activities for each day:

Multicultural Monday

Students from many different ethnic backgrounds had the chance to proudly show off their culture at Wellness Week’s opening event. The showcase featured Korean Club’s K-pop dance covers, Taiwanese Club’s traditional Chinese calligraphy, Indian Club’s henna art, Burmese Club’s face painting, and Vietnamese Club’s cultural presentation. These culture clubs brought the best of their worlds to remind each student to embrace their differences and love themselves unconditionally.  

Tune-in Tuesday

Some of AHS’ talented musicians rocked the stage at Wellness Week’s mini music festival. As students from Rock Band Club and Music Makes Miracles delivered beautiful performances, attendees enjoyed taking pictures at a free photo booth and browsing through health resources.

Healthy Heart Wednesday

Red Cross Club and Pre-Med Club repurposed AHS’ spacious South Gym to make room for their mid-week CPR training workshop. While some students received CPR training in their physical education classes, others were able to get some experience in hands-only CPR so they could be better equipped to react in the event of an emergency.

Thoughtful Thursday

In a heartwarming display of positivity, students lined up to write cheerful wishes and share their advice on coping with stress, building healthy habits, and loving themselves. Their thoughtful notes were displayed in the school courtyard at lunch and even caught the attention of AHS’ visiting Chinese foreign exchange students, who left a few kind messages themselves.

Food Fair Friday

As many know all too well, the best way to a teenager’s heart is with free food. AHS’ Green Team, Campus Environmentalist, and Healthy Eating Initiative teamed up to serve healthy snacks to the masses—mango smoothies, chia seed pudding, fruit salads, and more!

Mental Health Seminar

On Friday afternoon, three local motivational speakers came to deliver powerful speeches to the students at AHS’ state-of-the-art Performing Arts Center. Attendees heard about Leo Huang’s journey to sobriety and self-confidence, psychologist Dr. Michi Fu’s inspirational words and stress relieving techniques, and mental health therapist Sid Tsai’s entertaining advice and reflection as a former AHS student.

By encouraging students to take charge of their own health, Wellness Week Co-Chair senior Emily Lu believes her committee achieved their goal of inspiring self-care and destigmatizing mental health. As a heavily involved student, Lu understands that it can be “difficult to find the balance between ambition and satisfaction,” but each student is capable of setting responsible priorities and “taking care of themselves and the people around them.”

Although this is only AHS’ second time hosting Wellness Week, students and teachers alike hope to see the weeklong event return for many years to come. The success of this student-led effort just goes to show how much of a positive impact young people can have on their communities when they put their minds to it. Keep up the great work and stay healthy, Apaches!

February 21, 2018

About Author

Sarah Wang Sarah Wang is a senior at Arcadia High School. She is pursuing her passion for journalism, communications, and public relations by serving as Academics Editor for her school newspaper and Managing Editor of the school district's Digital Communications Internship. In her spare time, Sarah enjoys reading, playing piano, walking her dog, and trying out new places to eat!

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