CFI’s Student Leadership Conference 2013 a Success!

September 3, 2013

Empowering Students—Fostering Success

A new generation of freethinking leaders and activists is on the ascent, and this past July, many of their brightest and most dedicated convened in Amherst, New York to sharpen their skills, inspire their creativity, and strengthen their bonds. CFI’s 2013 Student Leadership Conference, which took place from July 25–28 at CFI–Transnational, hosted student leaders from across the U.S. and Canada to listen, learn, and put into practice ways they can promote critical thinking, freedom of inquiry, and secular values.

The Outreach Department used the conference theme, “Freethought in Action,” as a springboard to empower the next generation of freethought and skeptic activists to effect change on their campuses, in their communities, and around the world.

During the four-day conference, sessions ranged from three-hour workshops by James Croft on the importance of narrative and Desiree Schell on skeptical activism, to a presentation by Michael De Dora on the important work of CFI’s Office of Public Policy and how students can engage in advocacy in their regions. Student leaders were awed by the musings and entertainment of magician Garrett Thomas and inspired by CFI’s chair of the board, Eddie Tabash, and his rousing defense of the separation of church and state. You can see a full schedule of our powerful and awe-inspiring speakers on the conference website.

2013 Student Leadership Conference roundtable “Every session was hands-on, tangible, how to do activism in a palpable way—this is the toolkit.”
       -Dan Fincke

              Blogger, Camels with Hammers

CFI recognized exceptional student affiliate groups for their dedication to promoting and defending freethought and skepticism in the last year. The following student groups received awards for their achievements:

  • Secular Student Alliance at Presbyterian College - Secular Service
  • CASH at University of Minnesota and SSA at St. Cloud State University (co-awarded) - Best Educational Event
  • DePaul Alliance for Free Thought at DePaul University in Chicago - Diversity Initiatives
  • University of Missouri Skeptics, Atheists, Secular Humanists, & Agnostics (MU SASHA) - Defense of Free Expression
  • George Washington University Secular Society - Best New Group
  • Secular Student Alliance at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga - Activism
  • University of Michigan Secular Student Alliance - Group of the Year

Students left equipped and inspired—but don’t take our word for it. Read these posts from attendees who wrote about their conference experience:

CFI Student Leadership Conference 2013

CFI staff and attendees are grateful to everyone who contributed to make this event possible. (If you’d like to contribute to help provide resources to student leaders and campus groups, please donate today.)

About CFI On Campus


Center for Inquiry On Campus promotes and defends science, reason, freedom of inquiry, and humanist values in high schools and on college campuses throughout North America and around the world.

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