A new study shows the actions in middle school have a lasting impact well into adulthood.
Duke University researchers said people who were bullied as children are at greater risk for developing anxiety disorders, depression, having panic attacks, and suicidal thoughts when they grow up.
Too often, cutting comments and verbal bullying of young teens can center on appearance, and body image can become a self-destructive obsession. But some high school marketing students have created a positive initiative, hoping to change attitudes one Post-It note at a time.
When the issues of body image, verbal, and emotional bullying came up during Eric Wells' marketing class at Olentangy High School, the students decided to take a marketing approach to make an impact.
The effort began in the form of a questionnaire filled out by hundreds of students at Olentangy.
"Seventy-four percent said they felt judged and 60 percent admitted to judging others, so we realized we had a problem at hand," said Sophie Tran.
Wells posed the question to the marketing students.
"We have our research and stats. Now, we determine how we are going to address this," he said.
The answer was a campaign titled "Beyond The Bod," adapting elements from national behavioral authority and author Caitlyn Boyle, and her operation, Beautiful.com.
The group developed a logo, posters, T-shirts, and a key part of Boyle's approach of kindness and encouragement delivered on Post-It notes.
The campaign included a poster board for signatures of commitment at the Wigwam school store, and an open invitation from co-organizer, Sophie Tran.
"Every student that comes in, we ask them to fill out a Post-In so we get the whole student body involved," she said.
Within days, the goodwill moved beyond the school store.
"An unexpected discovery: we found several posted notes throughout the school we did not intend," she said.
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