Forum Membership

Categories, Levels & Annual Dues

U.S. Institutions/Community Colleges

U.S. colleges, universities, state systems, or consortiums, that offer students access to education abroad opportunities, whether managed by the applicant institution itself, or by other entities. Students enrolled in education abroad programs who are from other institutions must comprise no more than 30% of the total enrollment in the education abroad programs of the applicant. (If enrollment from other institutions exceeds 30%, applicants are considered to be a Provider Organization.)

Level Number of U.S. Students Sent Abroad Annually Annual Dues
1 </= 500 $800
2 501-1,000 $1,100
3 >/= 1,001 $1,500
Community College N/A $400
HBCU or TCU N/A $400

U.S. Institutions with a need for financial assistance have the opportunity to apply for grant funding to help defray the cost of membership.


Institutions outside of the U.S.

Universities located outside of the U.S. that engage in outbound mobility or host U.S. students in education abroad opportunities such as study abroad programs, courses, or on exchanges.

Level Number of U.S. Students Received* Annually Annual Dues
1 <150 $696
2 151-300 $1,236
3 301-500 $1,545
4 501-750 $2,060
5 751-1,000 $2,576
6 1,001-1,500 $3,091
7 >1,500 $3,606

*If an institution outside of the U.S. does not receive U.S. students but does engage in outbound mobility, the membership level will be determined by the number of its students that go abroad as outlined above.

Institutions outside of the U.S. with a need for financial assistance have the opportunity to apply for grant funding to help defray the cost of membership.



Organizations (for-profit or non-profit) that provide education abroad opportunities for students from U.S. colleges and universities. If a U.S. college or university enrolls students from other institutions and these students comprise more than 30% of the total enrolled in the education abroad programs of the applicant, the applicant institution is considered a Provider Organization.

Level Number of U.S. Students Received/Sent Abroad Annually Annual Dues
1 </= 150 $766
2 151-500 $1,700
3 501-1,000 $2,835
4 1,001-5,000 $3,967
5 >/= 5,001 $4,449

Provider organizations with a need for financial assistance will have the opportunity to apply for grant funding to help defray the cost of membership.



Membership associations, businesses, or other entities (either for-profit or non-profit) that do not directly administer or sponsor education abroad opportunities for college- level students but do provide a service in support of education abroad.

Annual dues: $1,030

This category also includes secondary institutions (ie, high schools). While The Forum does not currently serve secondary education abroad directly, we recognize that The Forum’s resources and training opportunities can be of benefit to professionals and institutions that send high-school students abroad. For this reason, The Forum welcomes secondary institutions to join as affiliate members, but caution them that the resources and services provided by The Forum are developed by higher education professionals and specifically for students at the college level.

Select non-profit foundations that donate funds and/or supports through its activities the education abroad field may qualify for a reduced fee in the Affiliate category. Please contact The Forum at for more information and the cost of annual dues.

The Forum maintains selective reciprocal membership arrangements with other membership associations to advance the strategic goals of each association.



While The Forum is an institutional membership association, individuals who are not affiliated with an institution of higher education or an organization that services/supports U.S. higher education study abroad, may apply to receive some of the benefits of membership. An Individual will only be considered for Individual membership if they meet one of the following criteria:

  • The individual is between jobs;
  • The individual works for a secondary education institution;
  • The individual is fully retired;
  • The individual is a full-time graduate student enrolled at a non-member institution*

Acceptance of Individual memberships is at the sole discretion of The Forum. Annual dues for an Individual member is $155.

To support our colleagues during the COVID-19 crisis, The Forum invites education abroad professionals who have experienced job loss as a result of the pandemic to apply for complimentary individual membership. Learn more about eligibility requirements and how to apply»

*Graduate students enrolled at a member institution are permitted to take advantage of the institutional membership benefits. Graduate students will be asked to provide expected date of graduation before access to benefits is granted. For more information about this option, send an email to


2019-2020 Membership Revisions

The Forum Board and leadership have convened a task force to streamline the structure and categories for Forum membership. The membership structure has not been amended since 2011 and The Forum’s continued growth and evolution present the opportunity to readdress the definitions and categories to better serve our members.

The task force is working under the following guiding principles:

  • To provide clear, simple, and fair categories that reflect the institutional diversity of our membership;
  • To better allow for participation of institutions and organizations based outside of the U.S.;
  • To expand opportunities for membership by individuals and organizations affiliated with the field;
  • To engage institutions that are currently underrepresented in the membership.

Revisions to the membership structure will be rolled out in phases over the next two years, with the first set of approved changes going into effect for the 2019-2020 membership year. Subsequently, the membership structure and fees will be reviewed on a two-year cycle to ensure that The Forum continues to engage and meet the needs of its diverse membership.

View the full report of 2019-2020 membership revisions»