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Graduating group leader David Gormley explains why we do what we do

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David Gormley, who has been in the leadership of our affiliate at the University of North Georgia for many years, wrote a farewell address for his last meeting with the group. It is refreshing to see one of our leaders reflect on their time with an affiliate so positively, and share it with the membership. The whole document is below, but we wanted to share a small excerpt:

I've been humbled and honored to have been able to lead that charge as President for two years... Skeptics' for me has truly been a life changing experience as I've found myself gaining some of my best friends through this group and watched my own opinions grow and shift through the discourse we've had with people of all different opinions and belief systems. Not only has this group served as a method of relief from stress and a group therapy on some occasions, but it has also become what I'd consider to be my family. 

Skeptics' Society finds itself in the unique position of having the ability to foster friendship and camaraderie between people of different faiths, political systems, economic policies, backgrounds, and many other categories and that's not something found a lot in this world, much less North Georgia...That's why I consider Skeptics' to be of such great importance to the school. We need – in every sense of the word need – a group to challenge the status quo and to force, on some level, people to constantly seek new evidence and reevaluate their ingrained positions and ideals on life. 

Wow. This is why the Secular Student Alliance does this kind of work. We look forward to seeing the future work of UNG Skeptics' Society, and wish David Gormley the best. 

This Week :: Starting up the New Year right

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ThisWeek

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If you think that spring semester is mostly uneventful, you'd be wrong. In fact, some of the biggest secular events happen during spring, so it's important that you restock your tabling supplies to promote them!

Whether it's MLK Day, Darwin Day, or Ask an Atheist Day, tabling is one of the most effective forms of promotion a group can do. As a service to our groups, we send out brochures, stickers, and other tabling goodies free of charge! We even have fancy SSA banners for our branded affiliates! The only thing you have to do is request these items using our ordering form, and we'll get it out to you as soon as we can.

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Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service is January 18 this year. Most people take this federal holiday off, but some extraordinary people use this day of remembrance to make the world a better place. Most campuses have a school sponsored activity going on, and we encourage your group to participate.

We also hope that you will use MLK Day as a chance to reach out to your Black student union about doing that service event together. It's often harder for Black people to be openly secular because of how ingrained religion is with Black communities. This is an excellent opportunity to build connections and dispel myths about the secular worldview while doing good in your community.

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Nick says:

Some of you reading this might be old leaders, but don't unsubscribe yet! This Week emails are how we reach out to group leaders about resources and services that we offer, so it's important that someone in the group get them.

If you are an old leader, please fill out a Leadership Update with us before removing yourself from this list. This automatically updates our systems so that the right people get these emails.

Click my face to update your group's leader contact information!

We're proud of Lakeridge Secular Alliance!

"It's amazing to represent secular students and bring them support, but even better when in doing so we can also help others in need by doing things like volunteering at the Food Bank."

Ethan Kirkham, President

Five members of LSA, including their adviser, volunteered at the Oregon Food Bank to sort damaged but still usable foods into Healthy and Supplemental categories. This was their first volunteer activity as a group, and provided a fun opportunity for members to do good work during Winter Break and spend time together as friends. They worked so efficiently that they were able to complete their work an hour early!



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The Secular Student Alliance at Jacksonville State University is Outstanding!

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Every year, the National Secular Student Alliance hears about amazing things that our students, affiliate groups, Secular Safe Zone Allies, and advisors are doing. When we hear of an individual or group doing something especially awesome, we present them with an Award for Outstanding Activism for their exemplary work. 

The Secular Student Alliance at Jacksonville State University in Alabama is one of our newest affiliates, with this being their first semester on campus, and they have been kicking butt! To close out the year, they held a toy drive event to support the Jacksonville Regional Medical Center. As a result, this RMC will open a toy closet so other organizations can also donate toys for children who will be celebrating a holiday (or their birthday) in a hospital bed.

The event was also included a free showing of holiday-themed movie, and SSAJSU sold popcorn, drinks, and hot cocoa as an extra fundraiser. Around 20 people came, including several new faces!

"People seem to think that what we're doing is pretty awesome," Ben Williams, President of SSAJSU says, "I want everyone to know that they can make an impact on their local community. You will meet many people that you didn't even know would be your closest friends!"

Thank you!!!

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You did it!

We were blown out of the water when David Smalley at Dogma Debate told us that he thought they could raise $40,000 for us.  To be here now, with over $105,000 raised from the Broadcastathon, is just incredible.  

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