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This Week

Weekly news, emails, and group-running articles for student leaders. Check in every week for new postings!

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We're Hiring :: This Week

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Gordon Maples, our beloved Senior Campus Organizer, is moving on after SSA Con 2017 to pursue his master’s degree. He’s been a guru of organizing know-how for several years, both as a volunteer and as paid staff with the SSA, and has maintained deep contacts with student groups all throughout the South. These are big shoes to fill, but fill them we must.

We’re seeking a full-time Campus Organizer who will work directly with approximately 150 SSA-supported student groups in the eastern United States. This position will be the direct liaison with SSA groups in their designated regions and will support them in their efforts to build community, engage in advocacy, participate in service opportunities, and educate their campuses. Applicants must have a bachelor's degree or equivalent education by June 1, 2017, when the position starts.

Read the full description and apply on our jobs page
. We look forward to working with YOU!

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Our Affiliation Renewals are coming up on April 17. This is a REQUIRED form for SSA Chapters and Affiliates to fill out to keep their good standing in the SSA, and to continue to receive access to services and resources like tabling supplies, grants, and the Speakers Bureau. It’s not a scary form, but there is some information you can work on compiling now so that you’ll be able to breeze through it. Visit our Affiliation Renewal FAQ page to find everything you need!

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The March for Science is coming up on Earth Day, April 22! It’s a very appropriate day, given the current administration's hostility towards climate science and desire to defund science-based agencies like the EPA and NASA. We hope that you and your group will stand up for science by joining a march near you! By now, your Campus Organizer should have let you know where yours is, but you can always look it up on the March for Science’s satellite march page. Remember to take a group photo when you go!

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We're Proud Of

Secular Student Alliance at The Ohio State University!

"The only thing more humbling than being a leader is meeting one you have always looked up to."

Brian Groenke, President

The SSA at OSU brought Matt Dillahunty to OSU to talk about debating atheism! They were able to bring him up with the assistance of an SSA Speaker Bureau grant to cover upfront costs until they could be reimbursed by OSU after the event. Everyone there, students and community members alike, really enjoyed his well-prepared talk and meeting with him afterward. A number of people, especially students, came up to Brian to thank him for bringing Matt because he’s such a role model and secular hero for them! The entire talk is on Matt’s YouTube page for the Atheist Debates Patreon Project.

The SSA <3 Science :: This Week

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The March for Science is April 22. It is being organized behind the idea that science is an essential part of our society, that its findings are not political, and that it must be robustly supported. However, if there’s ever been a time when science has been threatened by government mandate, it is now. Stand up for science by having your group join the nearest satellite march! Don’t forget to take a group picture to share with us too!

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Ask an Atheist Day is April 20! It’s an opportunity for secular groups across the country to work together to defeat stereotypes about atheism and encourage courteous dialogue between believers and nonbelievers. We’ve got a lot of awesome tabling supplies waiting for you, but you need to order them THIS WEEK! After that, we’ll be taking them off the form, because they wouldn’t reach you in time anyway. Order your Ask an Atheist tabling supplies today!

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Do you want a great summer job? Do you want to be in Columbus, ranked one of the best cities for millennials? Come help us out at SSA Con! We’re hiring two temporary part-time Conference Support Staffers for the months of June and July 2017! You’ll handle a lot of organizing and running before, during, and after the largest event the SSA runs! It’s a great resume builder and a really fun time, so come join our team! Go to our jobs page to learn more about the position and apply!

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We're Proud Of

Secular Panthers at Georgia State University!

"When advertising to the whole student body and community at large, you're likely to attract attention from people who might have never come to one of your group meetings. Or maybe you're the first 'secular' person that someone meets!"

Michael Nelson, President

Secular Panthers collaborated with Black Nonbelievers and the Atlanta Coalition of Reason to bring in Chris Johnson for the Georgia premiere of his movie, "A Better Life: Joy and Meaning in a World without God." They were able to bring him out with the help of Mandisa Thomas, whom they described as “wonderful,” as well as an SSA Speakers Bureau Grant. The feedback was overwhelmingly positive and gave their group many topics to discuss for future meetings. After the film, they discovered Chris had never eaten at a Waffle House before, which was something that had to change.

This Ends On Wednesday :: This Week

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Students LOVE our SSA Con t-shirts! We saw a blanket of purple on the stairway in 2015, and a field of orange in 2016. These shirts keep showing up in students pictures as they take the lessons of SSA Con and apply them to their own activism. They’ve shown up at the Reason Rally, at conferences, protests, and so much more! When you come to SSA Con 2017, won’t you want your own?

While you’ll be able to order SSA Con 2017 t-shirts for a few months yet, you only have until Wednesday to get yours for FREE!

Ending on March 15, all paid registrations for SSA Con include a free t-shirt! That offer is good both for individuals AND for groups! That means on top of the $50 groups can save by registering together, you can save even more and look amazing at the Con at the same time!

March 15 is also the end of early bird registration, meaning the cost of registration will be going up some. So there are two reasons to register soon: free t-shirt and cheaper tickets!

Register yourself or your group for SSA Con today!

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The Secular Society of MIT had a screening of "Flock of Dodos: The Evolution-Intelligent Design Circus," served Valentine/birthday cakes to show their love for Darwin, followed by a Q&A session with biologist-filmmaker Randy Olson and biologist Steven Orzack. In the same week, they went to the Harvard Museum of Natural History as a group!


The Secular Student Alliance at Jacksonville State University held a birthday party for Charles Darwin, and a professor from the biology department, Dr. Burns, came to speak about Darwin and evolution.


The Secular Student Alliance at the University of Idaho helped the Humanists of the Palouse as they put on their annual Darwin on the Palouse event! The main event featured Dr. Cheryl Miller, who gave a talk on the importance of vaccines, and Dr. Kevin Folta, who gave a talk on the science and safety of GMOs.


The Secular Student Alliance at University of South Dakota handed out secular and Charles Darwin-themed valentines, and set up a giant "On the Origin of Species" piñata, which they filled with gummy animals.


These are just some of the great stories we’ve gotten about Darwin Day 2017! What did your group do? Tell us in a Brag It Up and we might share it on Facebook and Twitter, or add it to our list of Darwin Day activities for groups to do for years to come!

Join a Proud Line of Speakers :: This Week

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SSA Con is renowned for its programming for students, by students. Every year, we let dozens of students speak about their areas of expertise, from effective tabling and event planning, to intersectionality and political engagement. If you have something you're passionate about sharing with the rest of the secular student community, you, yes YOU, should apply to be a speaker at SSA Con! Not only will you get to spread your ideas across the country, your registration fee for the conference will be waived! But you have to apply by March 31 to be considered! Join the pantheon of awesome student activists from 17 years of SSA Con by registering to be a speaker!

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If you’re like us, you’ve been mad as hell at the many injustices going on with this current administration. Maybe you’re content to complain on Facebook, or maybe you’re mad enough to do something about it! The Secular Coalition for America has Action Alerts to tell you how you can get politically involved in your area. You’ll get information about who to contact, where to show up, and many more practical solutions to these very real problems. Sign up for SCA Action Alerts so you can stay informed and be the change you want to see in the world.

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We're Proud Of

Jacksonville State University Secular Student Alliance!

"Members were very surprised to hear that the idea of a black nonbeliever could be interpreted as a ‘slave mentality’ or an attempt to be white. It highlighted the work needed to approach this issue and change the perception of secularism."

Anh Nguyen, Member

JSU SSA hosted Mandisa Thomas, president of Black Nonbelievers, for one of their meetings. For a good number of people attending the meeting, Mandisa was only the first or second black nonbeliever that they had ever met. She explained the important issues of recognizing and celebrating black secularism in history and in current events. She also gave a brief explanation to the (mostly white) audience on how religion can be a huge identifying factor for black communities, and cited as an example religious black people rejecting Mandisa's own blackness for not being religious. This was a great meeting and speaker to having during Black History Month!

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