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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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Those Lazy Hazy Crazy Days Of Summer :: This Week

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With summertime here, This Week is going to go on its summer hiatus! We’ve got some SSA Con updates for you, but we’ll be back with the resources and services when it’s time to start planning for fall semester. But don’t think that means your group should go inactive for 3 months!

Summer is the best time to really ramp up your group's social activities and community involvement. Here’s some things your group can do during this down time to stay active:

  1. SSA Con! (Obviously we’re going to bring this up.) You should go. No really, get yourself and your group out to Columbus, Ohio this July 7-9 for the most fun, memorable, and impactful conference a secular student could go to. You won’t regret it!
  2. Hikes! Whether you have forests, mountains, plains, or desert near you, go out and experience some nature! Don’t forget water and sunscreen.
  3. Cookouts! Many parks have grills and picnic tables available to reserve. It’s simple to get members to bring burgers, hot dogs, chips, sodas, and all the other summertime goodies. Throw a frisbee, sunbathe, play a game, or even have a reflection exercise!
  4. Community service! Work is the last thing you want to do, right? But doing service projects is a proven way to provide you and your group with a sense of life satisfaction and pride, and is a great bonding experience. Clean roads or rivers, build ramps for seniors, help out at food pantries or women's shelters. There’s all kinds of ways to be good without a god!
  5. Go out! Museums, libraries, sightseeing, water parks, concerts, beaches, movies, dog parks, whatever! Go have some fun in your town together!
  6. Stay in! Host game nights, watch a movie, have a party, hang out! You don’t always have to spend money to have great memorable experiences.
  7. Plan for next semester! The first few weeks of fall semester are the prime time to promote your group. Try to plan something awesome to do, either a table at the campus org fair or a gimmick in a public spot. The earlier you plan, the better it will turn out.

Find out more about how your group can stay active over the summer!

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A lot can happen between now and fall semester. If your group changes any part of your leadership, you need to let us know! If you don’t, we’ll keep contacting you (which you’ll find annoying) and we won’t contact the person we should (so they’re left in the dark). It’s not hard to do: simply fill out a Leadership Update, through the link at the Update Info button on the bottom left of every This Week email, or tell your Campus Organizer! Fill out a Leadership Update at any time of the year so we can redirect our communications to the people that need them!

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We're Proud Of

Secular Student Alliance at Morehead State University!

"At the end of the event, participants said they were moved by our SSA's performance in the Tunnel of Oppression, and didn't know how oppressed nonreligious folks really are."

Kayla Bowen, President

MSU SSA hosted the Tunnel of Oppression in collaboration with Spectrum, a local LGBTQ* organization, and SAGE, a local feminist organization. The Tunnel acted as an interactive “museum” of underrepresented students lived realities and experiences using skits, theatrical performances, and artifacts on the walls. Attendees were educated on the systemic nature of oppression and its impact on dominant and non-dominant groups, and created awareness about the intersections of oppression. MSU SSA put a lot of hard work into the building, painting, advertising, and practice it took to put it on, but the genuine reactions of people were well worth it. The event brought so much positive awareness to the oppression secular individuals experience that the group plan to host the event  again next spring!

SSA Con costs less until Friday! :: This Week

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This is the one time we’re going to do this: SSA Con registration rates are going DOWN! But ONLY THIS WEEK!

You’ve got until Friday, May 12, to enjoy our early bird registration costs one last time! That’s $34.99 for a single student or $124.99 for a group of 5 students!

After this week, you’ll still be able to register, but you’ll spend that much more to be a part of the most fun, educational, and inspiring conference secular students could ever attend!

If you’ve thought at all about coming to SSA Con this July 7-9 in Columbus, Ohio, THIS is the week to register for it!

Don’t put it off any longer! Register for SSA Con today with this-one time early bird rate offer!

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After you’ve registered for SSA Con, don’t forget to apply for Travel Aid! We’ll help you with the costs to get to Columbus, Ohio - you just have to tell us you want us to. That’s FREE travel money! The deadline to apply is May 31, however, which only gives you a few days left. Apply for your SSA Con Travel Aid soon!

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We're Proud Of

University of West Florida Secular Student Alliance!

"We learned that having a 'master to-do' list that all E-Board members can see helped us get things done. All you have to do is have a Google Document shared among all those who should see it. It allowed all Board members to see what still needed to be done, who was doing what, and provided a sort of 'fact sheet' for us so we could limit the number of questions like, 'What was decided on this?'"

Chase Baker, Former President

This year, the SSA at UWF hosted the second annual Southeast Secular Student Regional Conference (S3RC)! They had local and national speakers come to the UWF Pensacola campus on April 16 to talk about STEM, legal activism, sociology, humanism, and more. Even six months in advance, the group discovered that’s hardly enough time to get everything done! Their Campus Organizer, Gordon Maples, was a primary source of support. He provided resources to help them set up the conference, contacted the speakers when requested, and offered general advice throughout the planning. If your group ever wants to run its own conference, UWF has one piece of advice for you: START EARLIER!

The Real Stars of SSA Con :: This Week

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Have you seen our speaker lineup for SSA Con? It’s pretty great. We’ve got an awesome assortment of professional speakers with a wide array of expertise, from PEW Research Center and Dogma Debate to Americans United and the Satanic Temple. But we’re just as excited about all the student speakers!

Matt Enloe
, Sam Farooqui, Sean Rivera, Nicole Niebler, and many more! All of these students have done awesome things, are frequently featured in mainstream and secular media, and are respected by the SSA as leaders, experts, and activists. If you want to learn how to run your group better, you NEED to come to SSA Con to hear these student speakers. View our complete SSA Con lineup and register today!

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We just finished our Affiliation Renewals last week. However, we know some of your elections still haven’t happened yet, which means we’ll soon have the wrong information for your group! If your group is one of those who are about to select their new leadership, don’t forget to tell us who they are! Fill out a Leadership Update at any time of the year so we can redirect our communications to them!

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Service is one of the pillars of the SSA, and Foundation Beyond Belief has an excellent opportunity for you to practice that. Join the Humanist Disaster Relief team and be part of the rebuilding efforts in Louisiana after storms and flooding. Between May 27 and June 7, 2017, you can provide vital relief efforts, and they'll provide you with breakfasts, lunches, and lodging! Do some good without a god and apply to be on the Humanist Disaster Relief Team!

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We're Proud Of

We had so many groups join the March for Science last week, and we’re stoked! There was great domestic and international participation in this important show of support for science, and you were a part of it! Here are some of the pictures we’ve gotten from some of our groups. Send your own by replying to this email or submit a Brag It Up!

Southeast Missouri State University SSA!

Secular Humanist Association of University of Puerto Rico!

Secular Students and Skeptics Society at the University of Colorado - Boulder!

The Ohio State University SSA!

University of Michigan SSA!

Sam Houston State University SSA!

Let us share your story! :: This Week

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Last week was Ask An Atheist Day and the March for Science! Did you do one, or both?! Did you create a great table? Did you make some witty signs? Did you have some great interactions with people? We want to hear your stories about this past week, and see your smiling faces! Send us a Brag it Up with photos of your group, table, and signs for us to share!

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THERE IS ONLY ONE WEEK LEFT TO COMPLETE YOUR GROUP'S AFFILIATION RENEWAL. Every group that wants to retain its affiliation with the SSA MUST fill out its form by April 30. If we don’t get it, your group will lose access to our Speakers Bureau, tabling supplies, and funding! This form also helps us keep our leader contact information updated, and see how your group is doing. Fill out your group's Affiliation Renewal today!

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Our programming lineup for SSA Con is complete! We’ve got a fantastic assortment of student and professional speakers with a wide array of expertise to make this one weekend you don’t want to miss! Find out who you should be getting excited about when you come out July 7-9 for SSA Con!

More Info


We're Proud Of

Furman University Secular Student Alliance!

"Wanting change and taking action to make that change are two separate entities, but I really feel that this event palpably created change, and I am very grateful to have been a part of that."

Kristen Murdaugh, President

FUSSA held an “Atheism for Lent” event discussing why religious people should adopt atheism for Lent. Since the purpose of Lent is to help one come closer to the god Yahweh and understand why they believe what they believe, giving up the religion and seeing how one lives outside of it can be extremely beneficial. The non-religious can also adopt a religious tradition temporarily to help them better understand the practice and perhaps even benefit from adding it to their secular lifestyle. Members of the Furman Philosophy Club, Mere Christianity Forum, and Jewish Student Alliance attended the event alongside FUSSA members, other students, and faculty. When the topic of good and evil came up, and how those moral ideologies are not strictly dictated by religion, many of the students' long-held opinions on the illegitimacy of atheism were immediately reversed. As the attending faculty seemed to be enjoying the event, the students became less shy and asked questions they might not have otherwise. The overall feedback was that it was a really interesting event on an important subject and that the event should be an annual thing.

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