Campus celebrates World Happy Day

Campus celebrates World Happy Day

A happier world begins with you. With this statement by Action for Happiness – a movement of people who are passionate about creating a happier global society, people form 60 countries across all seven continents celebrated World Happy Day on 11 February 2012.

The Vaal Triangle Campus of the North-West University (NWU Vaal) was one of only three venues in South Africa that was chosen to screen the film Happy. Happy is an inspiring documentary from Academy Award nominated director, Roko Belic that aims to discover what really makes us happy. The movie takes the audience from the bayous of Louisiana to the deserts of Namibia, from the beaches of Brazil to the villages of Kinawa, to explore the secrets behind our most valued emotion.

The movie was screened by the Optentia Research Programme which is headed by Prof Ian Rothmann. The development and organisation of knowledge for the optimal expression of individual, social and institutional potential are key to this field of research and according to Prof. Rothmann the research programme utilises the inputs from various disciplines in the social sciences, including: Psychology, Industrial/Organisational Psychology, Educational Psychology, Sociology, Employment Relations and Social Work. 

Research done within this dynamic field supports a humane scientific approach which aims at the individual level to define, measure and promote human fulfilment, and at the institutional level to take civic virtue as its subject. Professor Rothman explains that this orientation to social science is essential for understanding the full range of human experience in contemporary times and equipping individuals and institutions to deal with conditions of rapid change, unpredictability, complexity and increased choice that depict modern society.

World Happy Day was celebrated in 60 countries across all seven continents.

According to Prof Rothmann happiness is not solely the result of an individual’s genetic makeup (50%) but also of a persons immediate circumstances (10%) and his/her internal efforts to be happy (40%). Adopting happiness as an ever present emotion you will, according to the latest research, live longer; are more likely to care for the environment; less likely to commit a crime and more likely to find creative solutions to problems.

The screening of the movie is a pro-active attempt to unite people from all walks of live to come together – on the same day – and start the conversation about happiness and begin to live happier, more fulfilling lives.
* Research in the Optentia Research Programme is organised in terms of five sub-programmes, which focus on flourishing and virtuousness, pathways to resilience, building blocks of psychosocial well-being, positive relations and talent management.