©2019 THE SMILE PROJECT

August 28, 2019

One of the first things I did when I woke up this morning was look in the mirror. Even if my groggy eyes hadn’t caught the full-length mirror in my room, as I brushed my teeth and washed my face, the mirror above the sink betrayed tired eyes and inarguably messy hair.

I...

August 25, 2019

I grew up outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and absolutely fell in love with a local news station segment called “Proud to be from Pittsburgh.” Even though I haven’t lived in Pennsylvania in four years, that phrase still strikes me as beautiful especially when I thin...

August 21, 2019

If I hadn’t quit my job, tomorrow would be my three-year anniversary.

I do not regret quitting my job.

On August 22nd 2016, I took a full-time position with the American Heart Association | American Stroke Association (AHA). On May 31st, 2018, I left.

The AHA was an incre...

August 18, 2019

I’ve just finished working at four summer camps, three of which are through a nonprofit organization called YEA Camp. YEA Camp stands for Youth Empowered Action and the camps are designed to help aspiring activists make a bigger difference on causes they care about.

I’v...

August 13, 2019

I am sitting on a futon in an apartment in Long Beach, California that belongs to two people I met ten minutes ago. On my left is a man I met two weeks ago. On my right is a man I met three weeks ago. I have just agreed to go on an 11-day road trip with the latter two...

August 11, 2019

About a month ago, I received a note from Anna Szolwinski, Community Outreach Coordinator for key2Bme, a Cincinnati based organization. She told me that she wanted to share the story of The Smile Project on their social channels to help fulfill their mission to spread...

August 7, 2019

Any time you leave any place for any length of time, your “to-do” list feels a little wonky. At least in my case, it eventually whittles down to, “what’s the bare minimum I have to do before I leave because I can’t do this where I’m going.” Usually that includes packin...

August 4, 2019

For one week each June, I return to Western Pennsylvania to work at a leadership camp called Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA). The campers are made up of approximately 120 rising high school seniors and I have the honor of counseling a small group of 8 – 12 of them...

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