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Incorporating Students into Your Chapter

Students are the future of procurement, so successful NIGP chapters take the time to incorporate students into their chapters. The first step to incorporating a student membership category within your chapter is to set up the criteria for defining a student membership and its eligibility requirements. 

NIGP encourages a non-fee based student category and promotion of a dual membership at both the national and chapter levels. Make sure your by-laws state the inclusion of student members under your individual membership category. 

  • NIGP Policy for Individual Student Membership

    Individuals who are enrolled part-time or full-time in an accredited community college, college, or university and actively pursuing an undergraduate or postgraduate degree in business or public administration, public purchasing, materials management, or related field of study are classified as a “Student  Member” for a twelve-month period; renewable annually. Full-time enrollment is defined as twelve (12) or more credit hours for undergraduate students and six (6) or more hours for graduate students.

    This criteria also qualifies students for national memberships, allowing students to carry dual membership with NIGP national and their local NIGP chapter. 

    All chapters should provide NIGP with information about new student memberships so we can contact the students directly and offer complimentary NIGP membership. 

  • Marketing Strategy for Student Membership

    How to Market Your Local NIGP Chapter

    Your local colleges and universities will be your best partners for recruiting student members. Here are some ideas for how you can market upcoming meetings and events: 

    • Host a booth at college career fairs
    • Post fliers at local college hangouts
    • Post fliers inside student career offices 
    • Meet directly with relevant clubs on campus
    • Develop creative campaigns on chapter social media channels
    • Advertise upcoming chapter events in student newspapers and local papers
    • Reach out to college marketing programs to promote the procurement profession
    • Speak to the campus webmaster to get your chapter included on the campus website
    • Participate at student career days at earlier levels (grade school, middle school, high school)
    • Create a targeted postcard campaign by pulling a list of students enrolled in local business degree programs
    • Tap into existing business programs at the high school level (such as DECA or FBLA) to introduce the profession and let them know how they can get involved with your chapter

    Samples

    What to Market to Students

    Here are some ideas of what to include in your fliers and promotional materials to attract students and encourage them to check out your next chapter event.

    • Resume-building experience
    • Opportunity to run a project during an internship
    • Free national membership, which can be added to a resume
    • Access to research tools, list serves, and reduced-cost training
    • Free attendance at chapter meetings and events to learn about the profession
    • Opportunity to build a network in the local professional community to help with future employment 
    • Access to pressing issues for the profession, which could be used in current school projects
    • Real-life experience understanding the day-to-day realities of the profession
  • How to Engage Students in your NIGP Chapter

    Getting students to attend a chapter event is one part of the equation. To turn students into chapter members, you need to find ways to engage them and inspire them to seek careers in public procurement. 

    Here are some ideas of how you can engage students in your chapter.

    • Create a members-only online job board
    • Incorporate a scholarship program for student members
    • Develop a professional mentoring program for students to help them transition from school to career
    • Host a chapter career fair for students that includes speakers from various agencies within the chapter
    • Host training sessions on topics students are interested in and that could apply to other professional interests (project management, leadership, etc.)
    • Open up select leadership positions for students to give them a voice in your chapter’s governance (e.g., a seat on the Board or a student committee)
    • Give students the information they need to decide if a career in public procurement is right for them:  Why choose Public Procurement as a Career

    You can order a student kit for your next chapter event by contacting membershipinfo@nigp.org

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