Revised Membership Model FAQ

We want to answer all of your questions about the revised membership model proposal. Take a look at some frequently asked questions and reach out to Membership if you have any further questions. 

Why do we need a new membership model?

We have an opportunity to reach out and to better engage all segments of the college and admission counseling profession, including younger members and members from diverse backgrounds.  In addition, after years of steady growth, NACAC’s membership numbers have reached a plateau and have begun to decrease slightly. Some change in the membership model is required for the association to remain healthy and continue to grow. The revised model we are introducing now would help to address these needs.

How does the revised model differ from the proposal that was presented last year?

The revised model retains the feature called the “institutional model” that was introduced last year but includes two options for individual professionals whose institutions are not able to join.

Why is the institutional model advantageous?

We retained the institutional feature because we believe it has the potential to bring a larger, younger and more inclusive group of professionals into the association. After a long period of steady increases in our membership numbers, those numbers have reached a plateau and our growth has become stagnant. The institutional model would allow colleges, universities, secondary schools, and school systems, CBOs, and other organizations to 1) sign up their entire staffs–allowing professionals at every level to receive the benefits of NACAC membership, and 2) pay a membership fee based on staff size, that, in almost all cases, would be less than what individual professionals would pay on their own. 

What are the two new options?

Comments from members last year taught us that one size does not fit all. Potentially, only offering an institutional membership could result in some members being unable to remain a part of NACAC because of their individual circumstances.

Two options–individual memberships and associate memberships–were added for those whose institutions are unable to join or for whom the institutional approach might not be beneficial.

Individual memberships would give both secondary and postsecondary members the full array of benefits–the ability to vote on bylaws, to serve as an Assembly delegate, to run for elected office, to receive member rates for NACAC programs, services and events such as the national conference, and more.  Individual Secondary, Individual Postsecondary, Individual Independent Education Consultants, and retired professionals would be eligible for this category.

Associate memberships, offered at a lower cost, would provide access to all NACAC’s digital resources–online publications, the Bulletin, the “Today in College Admissions” news service, and the digital version of The Journal of College Admission–without voting privileges and the rights that go along with them, including the right to be an Assembly delegate or standing committee member or to serve on the board of directors.  The associate membership would not include discounts for National College Fair exhibits, the national conferences, and other NACAC events at the member rate.  Individual Secondary and Individual Postsecondary professionals would be eligible for this lower-priced category, as would students, nonaffiliated professionals, affiliate staff, and university system and school district staff. 

How will member dues be affected?

We have modeled suggested dues for all the proposed institutional and individual member category to provide an idea of what the fees might be for each.  Note that these dues are just “proposed” to illustrate how this revenue-neutral model would operate.  Raising or lowering the dues paid by any one member segment would require corresponding changes in others.  Final decisions on member categories and dues will be made by the board after hearing feedback from the membership.

What is the financial impact of the proposal for NACAC?

The revised membership model is designed to be revenue-neutral. The purpose is not to make a lot of money for NACAC.  However, it could extend opportunities for membership to a larger, more diverse range of professionals at all levels of experience, and, over time, potentially add thousands of new members—amplifying NACAC’s voice and ability to advocate on behalf of students and their families. We strongly believe the revised model would make NACAC stronger as an association and enable it to deliver more benefits to more people in our professional community—ultimately allowing us to better serve more students and families.

What are the benefits of membership in NACAC?

  • Being part of the only professional organization solely devoted to college counseling and admission;
  • The chance to connect and network with thousands of professionals across the United States and around the world – colleagues who share our passion for and commitment to the ethical practice of college admission;
  • Access to the latest data and research on the higher education environment, as well as practical advice to help professionals grow and advance in their careers;
  • News and analysis about federal, state and local policies that affect US education and our profession in particular; 
  • NACAC’s one-of-a-kind annual conference; and
  • An organization that effectively advocates for members and the students they serve with federal, state and local governments as well as other higher education authorities. 

How can members learn more and share their thoughts on the new membership model?

Beginning with the Winter Leadership meeting in early March and through the 2019 spring and summer affiliate conferences, NACAC leaders will share details of the revised model and solicit feedback from members.  We want to hear from you.  A feedback tool has been created to collect comments from you.

What’s the bottom line?

The revised membership model would help NACAC secure a more sustainable and healthy future, and serve a larger, more diverse segment of our profession. 

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