Senior Speeches

This I Believe is a movement encouraging people to share, in essay format, their core values guiding their everyday lives. The movement began in the 1950s with radio host Edward R. Murrow.

When This I Believe was conceived, one of the goals was “to facilitate a higher standard of active public discourse by inspiring people to reflect, encouraging them to share, and engaging them in a conversation about personal values and beliefs that can shape a life, a community, and a society. By inviting Americans of diverse backgrounds to participate in the series, we hope to create a picture of the American spirit in all its rich complexity.”

This year, seniors and a few faculty members will be delivering their own This I Believe essays in our Monday assemblies. The videos on this page will be updated as each member of the senior class delivers their speech.


Yuki Xu

I believe in happiness. Today, I will share the ways that I believe you can achieve happiness.

The first way I want to mention is kindness. Kindness is not doing everything that people tell you to, not pleasing everybody, and not always agreeing with somebody’s idea, it is not covering up for the wrongdoing.

I believe that kindness can bring happiness. What does kindness mean? Well, you can easily define the word. Just be good to the people you meet. It seems easy to do, however, it is not actually easy to do. Even though it is difficult, I still think it will bring you happiness after you do this difficult thing.

Using myself as a example, before I came to America, I was bullied in school for a long time. Every time I got bullied by the people who I helped before, I would always wonder if I should still be kind to them or just seek out revenge. And I really enjoyed helping people, because that is a way for me to seek happiness. I was upset that they still bullied me, and I even tried to just be mean to everybody, that way I could protect myself better. However, I could just never do it. I feel even more sad and empty if I am mean to somebody. No matter how I treat them, I will still get bullied by them, why don’t I treat myself better? Being kind and helpful to others will make myself feel better. I do not need to use someone else’s action to punish myself. So these past few years, no matter how depressed I feel, how frustrated I am, I will always smile. Because I should not cry or feel sad. I could get used to it. Even if I am hurting, I will still try to be helpful.

Actually for me, I feel like smiling to others will also bring myself happiness. Maybe because I get a little bit crazy every time I smile at people and they smile back to me. Even with strangers, I will feel warm by their smiles. Every morning, before I leave the house, I always say, “Hi!” with a big smile to my family, because I would like to use a smile to start my day with a good emotion. So I always smile and am happy and kind so I can get happiness from it. I refused to be sad, because I feel it will not help me to be sad even for a second.

However, as I grow up, I finally realized that I should not refuse to be sad and that kindness does not mean to not to stand for myself. I knew I was sad all the time when I was bullied. Knowing how to be sad, but not be to trapped by it is also a way to get happiness. If we are never sad, how to know what happy is and how to actually feel happiness?

The reason why I spoke about happiness today is that I think happiness has some special powers. Happiness can be shared. If somebody is happy, you will feel like you are happy too when you meet them. So why not choose to be happy?

I believe there are lot of ways people can be happy, not just these ways, but when you feel sad and depressed, you can try these ways. Giving yourself a big smile, thinking three good things about yourself everyday, helping other people… there are a lot of ways that you can be happy. It does not have to be something big, just everyday, a small thing, could make your day different.

In the end of my speech, let me tell you one more of my secret ways. That is to always be thankful. Be thankful to the people that help you, the things you have, the beautiful places you have been to. So as a example, I am really grateful for the people that I met, the memories we made together, and the help I got from them. They all have been part of my life, my family.

At the end, I hope you guys can follow me, just move your lip. MAKE beautiful smiles to start your new day! Thanks.

Posted by on Monday April, 2, 2018

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