Return to Membership Information Associate Membership - Benefits, Criteria, and Details

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CIC serves small and mid-sized, non-profit, independent two-year liberal arts colleges.​


Benefits available to Associate Members include:
  • Reduced Registration Fees—Most CIC conferences and programs that are open to nonmembers are available to Associate Members at reduced registration fees. These include the Presidents Institute, Institute for Chief Academic Officers, and Workshops for Department and Division Chairs.
  • Workshops, Seminars, and Other Development Programs—CIC organizes workshops, seminars, consortial, and other programs for campus leaders and faculty members on a range of topics that address key challenges of independent colleges and universities. Many are open only to Institutional Members, some to all members, and others also to nonmembers. For questions about eligibility for a specific program, please consult the program's description on CIC’s website or contact CIC’s director of membership services, Kate Webber, at or (202) 466-7230.
  • Listservs—CIC maintains listservs for members to provide secure discussion forums for presidents, chief academic officers, institutional researchers, department chairs, presidential spouses, and others.
  • Tuition Exchange Program (TEP)—Associate Members are eligible to provide tuition-free enrollment at participating campuses to full-time employees and their family members.
  • Research Reports—Members receive relevant copies of CIC research reports on selected topics in independent higher education, including:
    • Independent Colleges and Student Engagement
    • A Study of Career Patterns of the Presidents of Independent Colleges and Universities
    • A Study of Chief Academic Officers of Independent Colleges and Universities
    • Business and the Liberal Arts: Integrating Professional and Liberal Education
  • Making the Case—CIC’s website includes a growing collection of statistics, graphs, and other resources such as articles and speeches that can assist member presidents and other campus leaders to make the case for independent higher education in general and for their own institutions.
  • List Requests—Members can obtain, upon request, mailing lists for specific purposes.
  • News and Publications—Associate Members receive timely reports and email alerts on critical issues as well as CIC’s newsletter, the Independent. CIC also represents the perspectives of member institutions through published op-eds, articles, press releases, books, and national public information programs. CIC connects presidents of member institutions with key representatives of the national media.


To qualify for Associate Membership, an institution must:
  • Be a nonprofit (501(c)3 IRS status), independent, small to mid-sized institution;
  • Offer a program leading to an associates degree or its equivalent;
  • Demonstrate a commitment to liberal arts and sciences by such means as requiring for graduation approximately one-third of all courses taken to be in those fields;
  • Offer several areas of concentration in the liberal arts and sciences disciplines, or enroll a large percentage of all students in these programs;
  • Possess at least Candidacy status of a United States regional association; and
  • Have been in operation for a minimum of three years.


The 2018-2019 dues are $900.

To Apply

If you are interested in joining, please select "Apply Online" to complete the online application form. For additional information, please contact Kate Webber, CIC director of membership services, at (202) 466-7230 or

Apply Online