VESTAL, N.Y. -- Finding a place to sit during lunch at your new high school can be a scary experience.
For some students eating by themselves is the only option.
"When people are alone all the time, it prompts and increases social isolation and that will eventually lead to depression, anxiety and more mental illness than we already have," said Arsalan Alvi, Vestal High School Senior.
That's what students in Vestal's Yes Leads Program are hoping to chance.
During 'No One Eats Alone Week' seniors have been sitting with younger classmates or students who typically sit alone.
"They're smiling more. They talk to you. You're able to have conversations with them. We smile at them in the hallways afterward because we end up becoming friends," said Alvi.
Students who participate say it's just as rewarding for them, as their fellow classmates.
"I love making friends, so getting a chance to meet other people that people would typically not go up and talk to or sit with because they either look different or they’re a younger grade level, I just love to go up to them and sit with them and possibly make another friend," said McKenzie Van Gorden, a Vestal High School Senior.
Each sticker on a wall includes an individual pledge to end social isolation. Students hope to have the entire wall filled by the end of the week.
"It says things like I pledge to smile at someone today or I pledge to make a new friend or I pledge to wave at someone. Just happy things that people can do to be more outgoing," said Van Gorden.
Vestal seniors are hoping their actions this week will carry on to other students for the rest of the year.