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This Week

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

Subscribe to receive "This Week" emails in your inbox here.  Leaders and members of affiliate groups, off-campus supporters, and other are welcome!

This Week: Darwin Day, Fundraising, and Apply to Speak

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Darwin Day is Coming!

Darwin Day is coming up sooner than you might think (February 12th), and you don't want to miss the opportunity to celebrate the birthday of the biologist who reshaped our understanding of the origins of life.

Darwin Day is about celebrating how science and reason make our lives better. Why not have a party in honor of the person who made such a great contribution to our understanding of life and its development?

The events your group can hold for Darwin Day are virtually limitless. Moreover, you can combine multiple events into a day-long celebration, or even a Darwin Week! We have lots of ideas in our Darwin Day Activity Packet. If you do anything cool, or need any help planning, be sure to let us know!

 

Fundraising

Fundraising is one of the most important activities that your group can engage in. It is also one of the most overlooked activities by many groups. Fundraising can often seem challenging, but rest assured that it can also be very simple and fun. Oftentimes, there is funding available that your group might not even be aware of; you might just need to ask for it!

Many SSA affiliates have pulled of very creative and fun events to raise money for their group. If your student group has some money in the bank, it makes it much easier to pull off bigger, more fun, and more creative events. We have a page set up with advice on fundraisers (including videos from expert fundraisers and activity packets to get you started!).

Fundraising is a great way to start out the semester, and you can even combine fun activities (like Darwin Day) with a way to help raise money for you group, to help you plan activities, or possibly help pay for group members to attend our annual conference.

 

Apply to Speak at the Conference

Have you done something really awesome this year? Did your group have something go terribly, awfully wrong, so you want to warn groups on how to do it better? Do you just like the sound of your own voice?

You're in luck! We are still accepting student speakers for BOTH of our summer conferences this year! We still need volunteers, so don't be afraid that you "aren't good enough"-- we still want to hear from you! Apply today and who knows, you might just become the next big voice of atheism.
 

Group Photo of the Week

George Washington Secular Society posed for a picture for us!
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Newest Affiliate
Gustavus Secular Student Alliance
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Featured Service
Project Grants
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Featured Speaker
Annie Laurie Gaylor
Ms. Gaylor co-founded the Freedom From Religion Foundation with her mother in 1976 while she was a college student. She has appeared on numerous talk shows, including The O'Reilly Factor, National News Segments and CNN, as well as Sally Jessy Raphael and Donahue. Ms. Gaylor is a vocal feminist and was on her first feminist picket line at age 14.
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This Week: Atheist Census, Atheists Giving Aid, Out for the Holidays

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Atheist Census

(We sent this last week, but the website was hit with a DDOS attack shortly after we sent the email, so we're giving you another chance to be counted.)

Atheist Alliance International (AAI) is pleased to announce the launch of Atheist Census.  Atheist Census is a global project to count and capture a snapshot of the world’s atheists.  The census records people's preferred title (e.g. atheist, rationalist, humanist, freethinker, etc), religious background, education level, age, gender identity and country. Please note that entries in Atheist Census are not personally identifiable. 
 
Help us demonstrate the atheist presence around the world!  Please contribute to Atheist Census and spread the word to your secular friends and group members!

 

Atheists Giving Aid

Many people have been asking how they can help after the tragedy that happened in Newtown, Connecticut last week. One of our affiliate groups, Society of Open-Minded Atheists and Agnostics at University of Kansas has teamed up with We Are Atheism and American Atheists to create a fundraiser for the families of the victims. If you're interested in helping, please check out their page. Since we know students cannot always contribute financially, consider sharing this with friends or family members who may be able to help.

Out for the Holidays!

The staff will be in and out of the office sporadically until the beginning of 2013. If you need something done soon, try to it send soon, or you may have to wait for a response.

Have a great winter break, and enjoy whatever holidays you choose to celebrate! By the way, this is the last This Week of 2012! See you next year!

Group Photo of the Week

Members from the Secular Student Alliance at Mesa Community College host a Stone a Heathen event.

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Newest Affiliate
Secular Students of Ozarks Technical Community College
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Media Relations
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Featured Speaker
Andy Thomson
Dr. Thomson is a psychiatrist in Charlottesville, Virginia. He has a private practice of general psychiatry and forensic psychiatry as well as serving as a staff psychiatrist at the University of Virginia's Institute of Law, Psychiatry and Public Policy and the Counseling and Psychological Services of the University of Virginia Student Health Services. Dr. Thomson would love to speak on suicide terrorism, psychology of religion, and many other topics.
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This Week: Atheist Census, Two Conferences, and Atheist Scholarships

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Atheist Census


Atheist Alliance International (AAI) is pleased to announce the launch of Atheist Census.  Atheist Census is a global project to count and capture a snapshot of the world’s atheists.  The census records people's preferred title (e.g. atheist, rationalist, humanist, freethinker, etc), religious background, education level, age, gender identity and country. Please note that entries in Atheist Census are not personally identifiable. 
 
Help us demonstrate the atheist presence around the world!  Please contribute to Atheist Census and spread the word to your secular friends and group members!
 

Two conferences?!

In case you've somehow been under a rock for the past week, we announced that we are holding TWO conferences in 2013-- one in Las Vegas (#SSAWest) and one in Columbus, OH (#SSAEast). Here's the main page for both conferences. You can get tons of information there.

It seems so far away though, you think! We know, and we're just as anxious for summer to hit. But in the meantime, you can ask your parents for a plane ticket to the greatest secular student conference ever for Christmas! Apply to speak! Get your group ready by fundraising or submitting a Leadership Travel Aid application! We can't wait to see you there!

 

Atheist Scholarships

You're about to leave for winter break, and what do you plan to do with all your time? Hopefully between eating, spending time with family, playing video games, and internetting, you can get some productive planning done for next semester.

Luckily, there are scholarship opportunities available for you! You can find them on our scholarships page. The earliest is due on January 10th, so spend your winter break wisely and hopefully get some money for school out of it!

Group Photo of the Week

Rekindle Reason: A Community of Atheist and Freethinkers at the University of Pennslyvania held an Ask-An-Atheist event!

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Darwin Day is going to sneak up on you! Start planning today!
darwinday.org/
 
Newest Affiliate
Panther Creek Secular Student Alliance
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Featured Service
Tabling Supplies! (Order them now for next semester's recruitment!)
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Featured Speaker
Jamila Bey
Jamila Bey is a journalist based in Washington, DC, where she hosts the weekly radio show The Sex, Politics And Religion Hour: SPAR With Jamila.  A sought-after speaker and writer, Jamila’s areas of expertise include health and family policy, and all issues concerning the First Amendment.  She particularly enjoys reporting on issues concerning religion and the separation of church and state.
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This Week: BIG ANNOUNCEMENT, Shelley Segal, and Service Projects

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BIG ANNOUNCEMENT

 

So, you may have heard that we have a big announcement coming today. Are you finally ready for it? You know how we had an amazing, record-breaking conference last year? Well this year, we plan to do it again...TWICE.

You read that correctly: we're going to have TWO CONFERENCES this year. We're going to have our annual get together in Columbus, OH, and another conference in Las Vegas, NV.

I know, you need a minute to process how amazing this all is. Take a deep breath and take it all in. Here's the main page for both conferences. You can get tons of information there.

Are you super stoked about this? So stoked you want to tell the world? Do it! Tell your friends! Ask your parents for a plane ticket to the greatest secular student conference ever for Christmas! Apply to speak! Get your group ready by fundraising or submitting a Leadership Travel Aid application! We can't wait to see you there!

 

Shelley Segal US Tour

Our favorite up-and-coming Australian  singer/songwriter is going on a tour of the U.S. again, and she wants to stop at your campus! You can find out more info about her tour here, and if you fill out the speaker request form linked on the page, we'll try to get her to your campus!

If you aren't familiar with her work, check out her performance at the Reason Rally earlier this year.

 

Service Projects

The holidays are a great time to show your atheist cheer! Many local non-profits need a lot of help at this time of year, so if you group is interested, try getting everyone together to go help out at a soup kitchen or an animal shelter. Everyone could use a break from studying for finals, and why not take a break and help the world at the same time?

We have lots of activity packets for community service if you need help! Let us know if you decide to do any fun things, and as always, send pictures!

 

Group Photo of the Week

Members from Secular Student Alliance at North Carolina State University and East Carolina University Secular Student Alliance participate in their local Light the Night Walk!
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WE'RE HAVING TWO CONFERENCES OH MAN THAT IS SOME BIG NEWS
Newest Affiliate
Flower Mound High School Secular Student Alliance
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Featured Service
Tabling Supplies
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Featured Speaker
David Niose
  David Niose has served as president of the American Humanist Association since 2009, and he also serves as vice president of the Secular Coalition for America. He is author of Nonbeliever Nation: The Rise of Secular Americans, which was released in July 2012.
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