UCR Policies and Procedures

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Policy Number:    650-50

Policy Title:         Memberships in Professional and Community Organizations

Policy Owner:     Vice Chancellor - Business & Adminstrative Services

Effective Date:    09/01/1992

Revised Dates:  12/05/2002, 02/04/2009, 05/16/2011 


It is the policy of the University to consider University membership in organizations that would promote the advancement of education and research, enhance the professional standing of its administrative personnel, and facilitate favorable community/campus relations. Cost and benefit must be a consideration for determining membership. Chancellors or their designated representatives are authorized to determine which organizations are suitable for university membership and to designate employees (officers, faculty, and staff personnel) who are eligible.


In making the above determinations, it is necessary to distinguish among the following kinds or organizations:


A. Organizations of university and colleges, including accrediting agencies (e.g., National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges, International Association of Universities, American Association of Universities).

B. Organizations of professional schools and colleges, including accrediting agencies (e.g., American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy, American Society of Engineering Educations).

C. Organizations of institutional service agencies and administrative officers (e.g., American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers, Institute of Internal Auditors, Western Association of College and University Business Officers).

D. Scholarly societies (e.g., Organization for Tropical Studies, Western Economic Association).

E. Community organizations (e.g., Chamber of Commerce, Rotary Club, Urban League).

F. Memberships to secure periodicals (e.g., American Society for Testing Materials, Association for Symbolic Logic, American Management Association).

G. Social organizations (e.g., business, athletic, luncheon, sporting, hotel clubs).


Memberships requiring initiation fees and annual dues may be authorized for payment under the guidelines below:

Departments may purchase:

  • Memberships in organizations of universities and colleges, professional schools and colleges, including accrediting agencies, and organizations of institutional service agencies and administrative officers. General institutional, rather than individual, memberships should be obtained whenever possible to allow participation by several or alternate employees.
  • Memberships in community organizations. These shall be held to the numbers necessary to achieve effective campus/community relations within a reasonable expenditure of funds.
  • Department memberships in organizations in order to obtain periodicals upon certification that the periodicals cannot otherwise be secured. If, for the same purpose, an individual membership proves to be less expensive, it may be authorized. Individual memberships in professional and scholarly societies, except as indicated above, are not authorized from departmental budgets.

Payments to organizations for other than initiation fees, dues and reasonable cost of attendance must be specifically authorized by the Chancellor.

Requests for payment of membership fees should be made via either a Form 5 (Request for Issuance of a Check) or an approved invoice with an appropriate account number indicated on it. The request for payment must be approved by the department head before payment is made by the Accounting Office.

Requests for approval for social memberships must be made in writing, specifying the time period for which membership is approved, and must be approved by the Chancellor, Laboratory Director or Vice President. Authority to approve memberships and payments for initiation fees may not be redelegated. A copy of the letter approving these memberships and payments shall be provided to the Vice President - Financial Management by the appropriate Chancellor, Laboratory Director or Vice President. Exceptions to this policy may be authorized by the Senior Vice President - Business & Finance.

Payments for entertainment expenses (such as meals and light refreshments) incurred in connection with the use of a social membership are reimbursable in accordance with BUS-79.

An employee who has been granted membership in a social club must maintain records showing the total number of days of business use and non-business use. The employee is required to report to the Accounting Office annually his or her official University business use and non-business use (using the Annual Report of Personal Use of a Club form; the annual reporting period is November 1 - October 31). In accordance with IRS reporting requirements, the portion of dues allocable to non-business use shall be treated as additional compensation to the employee and included in the employee's income. If an employee terminates his or her employment with the University or becomes ineligible to use the membership, any dues paid by the University related to non-business use must be reported by the employee to the Accounting Office before the employee's termination or ineligibility becomes final.


A review of University memberships in organizations shall be made annually by the Chancellor or appropriate Vice Chancellor to (1) monitor the use of University funds for such purposes, (2) avoid joining those that are duplicative in function and membership, (3) determine whether particular memberships continue to be worthwhile, (4) provide for responsible selection among the organizations, and (5) include an evaluation of the individual's contribution to the organization or the benefits to the University or the community derived from the individual's membership.



  1. 03/06/72 Policy letter from Vice President McCorkle "University memberships in Organizations."
  2. Accounting Manual section D-371-16 "Disbursements: Approvals Required": www.ucop.edu/ucophome/policies/acctman/d-371-16.pdf
  3. UC Business and Finance Bulletin 43: www.ucop.edu/ucophome/policies/bfb/g43.pdf
  4. BUS-79, Expenditure for Entertainment, Business Meetings and Other Occasions: www.ucop.edu/ucophome/policies/bfb/bus79.pdf