Introducing SSDP Pen Pals!

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SSDP is a global network with chapters in 25 countries across all 6 habitable continents. However, due to distance, language, and cultural divides, we are not always as connected with our fellow SSDPers as we would like. As part of our ongoing efforts to connect our network, we are pleased to announce a new program: SSDP Pen Pals! Pen Pals is designed to help connect members and alumni of the SSDP network with each other across borders. As our network continues to grow internationally, we are finding that many of our members outside the United States feel disconnected from the broader SSDP Family, especially in countries/regions where there is sparse SSDP activity. SSDP 2017 provided a fantastic opportunity for the international members of our family to interact with their counterparts in the US for the very first time, and we want to find ways to continue that magic outside of the conference setting. Social media does not always fill this gap as some of our members do not have regular access to the internet, or are not very active on platforms such as Facebook to begin with. The Pen Pal program will create an additional platform for communication between our members while also providing an educational opportunity through cultural/language exchanges.

How it Works

  1. Students and members of the SSDP Alumni Association* sign up by filling out this Google form.
  2. Applicants will be reviewed on a rolling basis and paired up with a pen pal based on their responses in the form.
  3. Applicants will be introduced to each other via e-mail. At this point, participants can exchange their other contact information if they want to talk via a different platform.
  4. If your partner becomes unresponsive, hit up Jake Agliata ( so he can either get in touch with them or re-assign you to a new pen pal.
It’s that simple! Once you are paired up with your pen pal, you are free to use whatever communication platform you’d like to use in order to communicate, including good ole’ fashioned snail mail. Jake will likely follow up with both of you after a few weeks to see how things are going. For now, the Pen Pal program is limited to just individual pairs. However, if there is a lot of participation, we will look to expand this into group connections or possibly start pairing entire chapters together. You can also use the Pen Pal program to find a language partner. If you’re interested in practicing a new language, please indicate that when you fill out the google form. Please contact Jake at if you have any questions. *If you are an SSDP alumni but not already a member of the Alumni Association, sign up here.