††††††† There are now 84 student members of the Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers, many of whom attended the conference this year in San Diego. There are also many students who attended the conference who are not members, and Iíd like to extend a warm invitation to them to join ATSA.
††††††† I am also a member of other criminological and psychological societies; however, I have found ATSA to be very different in that the conferences really foster a sense of community. Students are treated with respect and are encouraged to make important connections with experienced professionals and researchers in the field. My experience through ATSA has been incredibly positive. Since becoming a member and attending my first conference five years ago, I have made invaluable connections with other researchers, been a part of useful collaborations, and made lasting friendships. My wish is that other students will feel comfortable to introduce themselves, ask questions, and make connections like I have.
††††††† As a remote student, with mentors, colleagues and PhD advisors in two different countries and three different time zones, I have welcomed the opportunity to be more involved with other students in the field. So, one advantage of student membership is participation in the student specific list-serv. Students are sometimes reluctant to post on the ATSA-wide list-serv, perhaps nervous that their questions will be ignored or laughed at. The student list-serv is a safe place to post questions or ideas for feedback. Perhaps you want clarification from someone who may have interpreted a particular article differently? Maybe you werenít familiar with the authorís methods? Maybe you want to know if someone has a copy of a particular reference, because your university library doesnít have it? We have also used the list-serv to get feedback on upcoming poster presentations or powerpoint slides. Further, the student list-serv is a great tool for connecting potential roommates to make conference costs more affordable.
††††††† A second important advantage of student membership is the chance to serve on one of ATSAís committees. The association has a number of committees for everything from Public Policy to Ethics, and each one has a student representative. This is a rewarding way to meet people who are better established in the field and to become more formally involved with ATSA. As some terms are coming to an end, we are currently connecting new student members with committee chairs.
††††††† As the student representative to the Board of Directors of ATSA, I would be happy to answer any questions you might have. Professors, encourage your students! Students, encourage your peers! And, please, donít hesitate to contact me for more information.
††††††† Danielle Harris
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