By Mid-Atlantic Regional Organizer Ryan Brenner
Day Two was jam packed with a number of compelling workshops. It opened with something in which many upSTANDers are already experts: social media. Our very own Emma Goldberg led Social Media 201, going over everything from Tumblr to Twazzup and of course how to write the perfect tweet.
That out of the way, former National College Outreach Coordinator Katie Ashmore taught us the importance of moving conversations offline. She demonstrated how to engage with another person in a one-on-one conversation in order to get them involved with STAND. I thought this was so interesting because most of the time it is those first conversations that are the hardest to have. Katie reminded us to take a step back and listen when all we want to do is go, go, go.
Later in the afternoon Katie joined a panel of her former STAND colleagues to take our questions about overcoming the challenges that we as a movement face today. By far the coolest segment of this panel was their stories of how they got involved in STAND. From Swarthmore to Georgetown, all the STAND alumni’s legacies live on not only in the chapters that exist to this day at their alma maters, but also in the work they are doing out in the real world. We truly are the next generation of leaders who will lead the change to a world in which human rights are respected everywhere.
Finally, after dinner we heard from Niemat Ahmadi, United to End Genocide’s Director of Global Partnerships, and Khalid Girase, co-founder of Nubia Project. Both shared their stories of how they were personally affected by the ongoing conflict in Sudan. Their personal stories were deeply moving, and served as a great reminder of why, ultimately, we do what we do.