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Membership Process

The Leadership Alliance membership procedures allow for strategic growth through the addition of institutions and organizations that demonstrate the goals, actions, policies and public statements about diversity that are consistent with the mission and strategic goals of the Alliance. Members are primarily academic institutions of higher education that offer undergraduate programs, many of whom also offer graduate and/or doctoral level training. Associate memberships were initiated in 2013 to include research industry organizations, academic institutions offering solely graduate programs, and other private sector entities. Procedures for the recruitment and invitation of academic institution (undergraduate and graduate degree granting) members consist of a multi-step targeted process, which is outlined below.

Step 1: Nomination Process
Membership in the Alliance is by invitation only. Presidential-level commitment is required for membership. Representatives from institutions wishing to apply for membership in the Alliance must contact an institutional or summer program coordinator from a current Alliance member institution to solicit a nomination. Self-nominations will not be permitted. A nomination does not guarantee an invitation to apply for membership.

Step 2: Invitation Process
The Membership Committee will review nominations to determine those institutions that will be invited to apply. Presidents of institutions that have been invited to apply will receive an invitation letter that provides information about the invitation process and outlines materials that the institution must provide. To be considered further, required documentation includes a letter of intent from the institution’s president identifying how the university will support and extend the mission of the Alliance, whether it would recommend students for activities or host students and summer research programs (or both), and specific institutional data related to measures of diversity and commitment to diversity at the institution. A limited number of institutions will be invited to apply.

Step 3: Review Process
The Membership Committee will review the institutions’ materials and determine whether a site visit to the institution(s) is warranted. In the event of a site visit, Alliance executive office staff and committee member(s) will work with the representative from the institution of interest to arrange a time to meet with the president, provost, relevant academic officers and students.

The committee will present their recommendations to the Alliance institutional representatives at the biannual business meeting. The Alliance body then votes on the response to the invitation to apply for membership by the prospective institution.

Step 4: Notification Process
The Executive Director will notify the institutions’ presidents of the results of the vote after the business meeting in the form of a letter. The president will be tasked with appointing an institutional and/or summer program coordinator who will be invited to attend the Leadership Alliance National Symposium, biannual business meeting and New Coordinators Orientation.

Associate Membership
Associate membership is also by invitation only and requires chief executive or senior leadership commitment. Given the varied nature of companies or organizations that may be considered for associate membership, the nomination and invitation processes involve iterative deliberation of the value-added benefits to both the Alliance and the prospective member. As with academic members, information about the prospective associate member will be requested for review by the Membership Committee, who will then submit a recommendation to the Alliance institutional representatives at the biannual business meeting. Given approval of an associate member invitation, the Executive Director will notify the chief executive or senior administrator for the company, who will be tasked with appointing an organizational coordinator and representatives for Alliance governance activities as determined.