Student looks to inspire others with Post-it notes
Founder of ‘RU Post-It Anonymous’ spreads messages further through social media
While Daniel Munoz gets ready for the day, he also takes a minute to go online and search for inspirational quotations.
Once he finds a few he likes, the School of Arts and Sciences sophomore writes them on Post-it notes to take with him on his way to class.
As he boards buses or walks into student centers, he places the notes in high traffic areas where many students can notice.
Munoz, creator of a Tumblr and Twitter account “RU Post-It Anonymous,” said he integrates social media while trying to motivate his fellow students around campus.
“The whole idea behind the Post-its was to get people thinking and moving,” he said. “I thought to myself, why not take the extra step to go and help others.”
Munoz first thought of starting “RU Post-It Anonymous” while taking “Basic Acting” at the University during the spring 2012 semester.
He received a challenge in one of his assignments: Instead of walking around campus with his headphones, experience the world around him.
“I liked the idea, so I started writing the idea on little pieces of paper and leaving them on bus seats,” he said. “I finally told my professor and she liked it.”
Though his instructor and University alumna Kristen Adele liked what Munoz was doing, she told him to expand on it, he said.
Munoz bought a few packs of Post-its, and started writing inspirational quotes on them.
“About a month after I started leaving Post-its on buses, I told my class what I was doing to see what they thought,” he said. “I wanted to gauge their reactions. Some had said they [saw] the notes and liked them.”
Munoz said the decision to continue was easy after that. A friend suggested he should think about incorporating social media as well, to expand even further.
“A friend told me I should start a Tumblr page for the notes,” he said. “I also recently started a Twitter page and I even have groups from on campus like [Rutgers University Programming Association] and RU Dance Marathon following it.”
Munoz said while he does not have one specific place he gets his quotes from, he will look on Facebook, Google and Twitter for inspiration. He also has no specific times or locations for posting — he puts notes up whenever he feels the urge.
“If I have a class at Scott Hall … I will leave them [there] during the semester,” he said. “I usually post them on the back doors to buses, or if I open a door I will put the note on my hand and use it to open the door, leaving the note as I go.”
Munoz said while he hopes the notes inspire people to have a better day, they will never include any political or religious messages on them.
“I choose quotes that people can relate to, so I won’t put up anything religious or spiritual,” he said. “I don’t want to add my political or religious opinion.”
Munoz said one of his favorite quotes, “Seize the moment, for it is fleeting” is his inspiration.
“I love the idea behind that quote,” he said. “The idea that a beautiful moment is passing and you need to reach out and grab it and hold onto it.”
Munoz said another one of his biggest inspirations to continue is Stan McNeil, the famous LX bus driver, who inspires his passengers with words of wisdom and hope.
“Stan, the LX driver, loves what I do,” he said. “While other bus drivers will tell me not to post any notes, Stan will see me and call me over and tell me to put them anywhere on his bus, even on his windows and clipboard.”
Munoz said McNeil has even given him some personal quotations, which he plans to use in the future. He feels that he and McNeil have the same mission in mind, and they just want to brighten someone’s day.
“Stan is helping me to keep going, he is an inspiration,” he said. “He and I don’t have to do it, we are taking that extra step because we like it. He told me that even if I just post one note a day, it would make all the difference.”
While he continues to post, Michelle Smith, director of the Rutgers Student Center, wants him to know the notes will continue to be taken down at the centers, because of a posting policy in place.
“All material to be posted must be delivered to the information desk to be approved and tacked onto the bulletin boards by Student Life staff,” she said.
Smith said while she appreciates the thought behind his idea, there is still a system of rules the student centers must follow.
“If we allow him to post without approval, that opens the doors to literally thousands of others to post whatever they want,” she said. “Maybe he can work with RUPA and create a Post-it wall, like the ‘Before I Die’ wall they had up last week.”
Amber Griffin, a School of Arts and Sciences junior, said she thinks the notes could help put people in better moods.
“I think the notes are nice,” she said. “If someone is having a bad day, I would think it would put them in a better mood.”
Shelby Frank, a School of Arts and Sciences first-year student, said the notes are great and while she has not seen them yet, she hopes to.
“It’s inspirational,” she said. “It brightens peoples day and has a positive effect on the entire community.”
Munoz said that he hopes more people will get involved, not only here at the University, but at other universities as well.
“I would love for more people to become active with this, wherever they are,” he said. “A student at NYU has expressed interest to do this at his school. It is slowly growing.”
Munoz said that he hopes word will continue to spread, and people continue to enjoy his notes of inspiration.
“Just go with it,” he said. “I hope people will continue doing this even after I leave.”
Munoz hopes the next time someone is having a rough day, maybe after an exam or turning in a research paper, they see one of his notes and smile. As long as even one person has a slightly better day because of his Post-its, he said his goal has been achieved.