Guidelines for Constituent Societies


The Indiana University Alumni Association serves as an umbrella organization that incorporates all eight campuses, all school constituent societies, all special interest affiliate groups, and all alumni clubs worldwide. IUAA’s mission is:

The Indiana University Alumni Association brings alumni together to support IU and one another throughout their lives.

The Indiana University Alumni Association and the Office of Alumni Relations (a department of IU) are the primary entities responsible for alumni engagement activities and are charged with directing and providing support to all units of Indiana University engaged in relations with and programs for its alumni.

Legal Status

The constituent societies of the Indiana University Alumni Association, Inc. (IUAA) are integral parts of the association. The IUAA is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization, so the constituent societies derive their legal and nonprofit status from IUAA. The IUAA is a separate entity from Indiana University.

Constituent Societies

Constituent societies are defined by the IU Alumni Association Bylaws as academic partners: school and campus-based alumni programs. Staff members within each unit are charged with development and execution of programs. An IUAA staff member in Bloomington or Indianapolis is the assigned liaison to each group. Each group can have an alumni board made up of volunteers who advise on alumni engagement.

Alumni Board Best Practices

The IUAA provides a set of best practices for alumni boards around the university. The practices include items such as the following and they can be found on the IUAA Volunteer Intranet or with the staff liaison:

  • Statement of Volunteer Expectations
  • Bylaw and Board structure templates
  • Volunteer Job Descriptions
  • Board Strategic Needs Assessment
  • Succession Planning
  • Onboarding/Orientation

Funding for Constituent Societies

The IUAA provides a unified dues allocation. IUAA solicits one membership from alumni, and provides a portion back to each member school, interest group, etc. For all alumni groups, the funds are to be used for regular alumni engagement, programming and communications to their alumni base. (We do not provide a list of specific items that the allocation can be should be used for, there are so many options and variations.)

Management of funds is delegated to the constituent society staff by IUAA. Constituent society staff (academic school staff partner) are responsible for budgeting, expenses, and communication with alumni boards (when applicable) on funding and budgets. The IUAA staff liaison for constituent societies has final fiduciary oversight of these accounts.

A census of constituent society members is taken each December 31 to determine the allocation amount. The allocation is made for both annual and life paid members. Monthly payments of the allocation will be transferred into the dues account for each constituent society at the IUAA. The allocation is based on the following formula:

  • $301 base allocation
  • Plus $1.89/ paid member

See Dues Allocation Fund Policy


The budget for alumni programming and engagement should be developed by the constituent society staff in line with the school or campus priorities and following the IUAA Dues Allocation Funds Usage Policy, in consultation with the alumni board. The staff member should present the annual budget for review by the board.

Budgets must be developed and entered into ABM following the guidelines and due dates designated by the Alumni Business Office (ABO) in order to receive allocations.

IUAA staff review ABM budgets annually.

Constituent societies can create new account projects within ABM with a request to staff liaisons or ABO staff in order to account for revenue and expenses associated with a specific event or program. Recurring or annual events are good candidates for specific project in ABM.

Financial Reports

The monthly financial report will be available on the designated IU Box account and within the ABM system on or about the 15th of the month. The detailed activity is also available in both places.

A training webinar which includes ABM is available, please contact your staff liaison.

Staff will receive notification when monthly reports are refreshed in Box.

Accounts Payable

The ABO writes checks weekly. All check requests need to be received in the ABO by Noon on Wednesday. All requests for checks must have the following information:

  1. IUAA check request form with the following supporting documentation:
    1. Original invoice, receipts from expense reimbursements, copies of deposits for a refund.
    2. If you would like something to be submitted to the vendor along with payment, please provide an additional copy and mark this on the check request form.
  2. The check request must have an IUAA account number (seven digit IU account numbers will not work). If you intend to use the IU account number, please use the IU accounts payable process. (Reference the Dues Allocation Usage Policy)
  3. The check request must have the signatures of the individual responsible for the particular IUAA account being charged:
    1. Bloomington Schools: IUAA Director of Alumni Communities and Volunteer Management
    2. IUPUI Schools: IUAA Staff liaisons
    3. Regional Campus: Regional Campus director
  4. By initialing the bill, the individual is taking responsibility for the bill being both the correct amount and that all goods and services have been received and rendered.

Additional Info

Include a W-9 form for all new vendors or updated vendor information. Attach W-9s with the check request. This information could be considered sensitive, and should be handled with the same security as credit card information.

IU employees must be paid through IU payroll vs. accounts payable. Contact IUHR to confirm eligibility and in compliance with IU guidelines.

Fund Balance

Constituent societies are the only chartered alumni community allowed to maintain a fund balance. A fund balance is a carryover of funds from fiscal year to fiscal year. Fund balances should not exceed one year’s allocation (also known as the “one-time rule”).

  • Fund balance < 100% of annual allocation = full annual allocation
  • Fund balance > 100% and < 200% of annual allocation = partial allocation adjusted for the amount by which the fund balance exceeds the full annual allocation
  • Fund balance > 200% of annual allocation = no annual allocation

Allocations not dispersed due to the one-time rule, will not affect calculations of future allocation. The calculation is done on an annual basis and will not decrease future funding.

Constituent societies who plan to spend down their fund balance (in excess of their annual allocation and other revenue), for alumni engagement or communication activities should budget in ABM accordingly, A deficit would be budgeted (expenses greater than allocation or other revenues). The deficit should not be greater than what is available in their fund balance. The IUAA staff has the option to request more information on fund balance spending plans in order to approve it.

Fund Balances can be found in the ABM (Advanced Budget Management) software or via the Alumni Business Office.

Constituent societies with a negative fund balance by the close of the annual IUAA audit will have their dues allocation applied to their negative fund balance first. The remaining portion of the dues allocation will be the dollars for the budget that fiscal year.


The IUAA is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporation and donations to IUAA, and constituent society alumni programs, are tax deductible. (See definitions section.)

The IU Foundation is the entity responsible for recording tax-deductible donations for IU and the IUAA, Inc.

Donations should be designated to the appropriate IUF account based on donor intent (such as a scholarship account). If the donor wishes to donate to a constituent society alumni program, it can be designated to the IUAA general account (account number 0580011400) so donors receive proper tax credit. The ABO staff should be notified of these donations so that the funds can be properly allocated.

See the definitions section for more information.

Insurance Coverage and Contracts

Alumni constituent society activities are insured through IUAA’s General Liability policy, but only with respect to the liability for their sponsored activities or activities they perform on IUAA’s behalf.

Staff liaisons can provide certificates of liability as requested.

IU Alumni Association, Inc. must be the legal entity listed on contracts.

Multi-year contracts must be approved by the IUAA Board of Managers. Staff liaisons can assist with this process.

Refer to the IUAA Signatory Policy for more information.

Unrelated Business Income

Alumni constituent societies need to be aware of potential tax liabilities related to unrelated business income (UBI). If an activity is a trade or business, regularly carried on and is not substantially related to the organization’s mission, then the activity could be considered UBI. If a constituent society has UBI, then the IUAA needs to include this information on both its state and federal returns and possibly pay tax on the income. Some of the activities the Internal Revenue Service considers UBI are advertising, tours, merchandising, etc.

Generally, the areas where constituent societies might get into activities that could be UBI are in advertising and sponsorships. This would include advertising in a constituent newsletter or on its Web site.

Please reference the IUAA Sponsorship Acceptance Policy can help guide decisions in this area. If a constituent society is considering any activities that might be considered UBI, it should contact your staff liaison.

See the IUAA Sponsorship Acceptance Policy.

IRS.GOV Definitions.

Prohibited Activities

The IU Alumni Association as a not-for-profit corporation is prohibited from certain activities. Since the alumni constituent societies are under the umbrella of the IUAA, they also must not participate in prohibited activities.

Sec. 501(c)(3) organizations are strictly prohibited from engaging in any political activity. Political activity includes making contributions to political parties, action committees, or candidates for political office, as well as promoting or otherwise endorsing a particular candidate or political party. Also, Sec. 501(c)(3) organizations must not engage in any significant legislative or lobbying activity. Failure to comply with these requirements can result in severe penalties, including loss of tax-exempt status.

See the IU Policy on Political Activity.

See the IUAA Code of Ethics.

These guidelines are subject to annual review and revisions by IUAA administration.


Constituent Societies are expected to follow IU brand guidelines.

Trustee Election

See IUAA Trustee Election Guidelines.

Data Use

The IU Alumni Association is charged by the university to be the keeper of the official record of all alumni demographic information.

Crimson is the official data source and system of record, for alumni and donor records.

It houses data from three organizations from the IU Foundation (IUF), the IU Alumni Association (IUAA), and Indiana University (IU).

IUAA, the official alumni organization for Indiana University, is the official university office responsible for maintenance of alumni data, for data related to membership, communications, and activities for IU alumni. The IUF is the official fundraising organization for Indiana University and is responsible for the data related to fundraising.

Constituent societies adhere to the Data Access and Crimson policies for use of alumni data.

Volunteer Data

Access to data will be granted to recognized volunteers engaged in the execution of work related to the mission of the IU Alumni Association or the IU Foundation. Every volunteer will be required to sign an agreement acknowledging the following before access to Data will be granted.

Access to data by student organizations will be granted when supported by the constituent society’s alumni office and only shared with university staff. Students should not have direct access to alumni data.

See Access to Donor and Alumni Biographical and Fundraising Data.

Electronic Resources

Constituent Societies have access to the following platforms:

  • iModules: event registration, data collection, and e-commerce (access through Workfront)
  • Crimson Service Center: ad hoc data extracts access through Workfront)
  • Cream: consolidated reporting environment that interfaces with Crimson data, real time data reports (direct access for staff who have Crimson access)
  • Calendars: access to centralized alumni relations calendaring function (staff liaison coordinates)

Constituent societies are expected to have their own web presence following university guidelines.


As new staff members are hired by schools and regional campuses, a formal and comprehensive training should be set-up with the IUAA liaison. The training and onboarding will include:

  • Finances
  • Marketing and Branding
  • Data
  • Organization Structure and History

Ongoing professional development and training opportunities are offered through IUAA.

Dues allocations should not be used for conference fees, professional organization dues, or staff travel.

See Due Allocation Fund Policy.


IUAA dues allocations should not be used for staff travel. Exceptions can be made for guest speakers. Travel will be reimbursed, and payment will occur at or after the engagement. Staff liaisons can provide more information.


All checks/credit cards or cash received by a constituent society representative should be forwarded to the ABO within 48 hours of receipt of the information for deposit. The following is the procedure for preparing a deposit using the IUAA deposit forms (staff liaisons can provide these).

Checks/cash and credit cards should be prepared as two separate deposits.

Check/cash deposits

  • Deposits must be delivered to IUAA via hand-delivery, USPS or secure, IU accountable mail.
  • List the name on the check, check number, and dollar amount on the IUAA deposit form,
  • If you are including cash, you should list a total figure for the amount of cash included in the deposit. If the amount is large (over $500) it is recommend to hand deliver the deposit and have an ABO or IUAA liaison confirm the cash amount received. Total the checks and cash and provide this total on your deposit form.
  • Provide and account number and description that should receive the credit for the deposit.

Credit Card deposits

All credit card deposits must be handled in a PCI compliant manner:

  • Credit card numbers should not be typed into the form, and must be handwritten.
  • Deposits must be delivered to IUAA via hand-delivery, USPS or secure, IU accountable mail.
  • List the name, credit card number, expiration date, and dollar amount to be charged on the IUAA deposit form.
  • Total the amounts to be charged and provide this total on your deposit form.
  • Provide the account number and description that should receive the credit for the deposit.

Regional campus staff are authorized to make deposits into IUAA bank accounts directly. Staff should prepare the deposit, submit the deposit to the bank, and remit the documentation of the deposit to the business office to be recorded into IUAA’s accounting software.



ABO: IUAA Alumni Business Office

ABM: Advanced Budget Management, IUAA’s accounting system; access form can be found in IQ

Charitable Contribution: A charitable contribution is a donation or gift to, or for the use of, a qualified organization. It is voluntary and is made without getting, or expecting to get, anything of equal value.

Contributions From Which You Benefit: If you receive a benefit as a result of making a contribution to a qualified organization, you can deduct only the amount of your contribution that is more than the value of the benefit you receive. Also see Contributions From Which You Benefit under Contributions You Can’t Deduct, later. If you pay more than fair market value to a qualified organization for goods or services, the excess may be a charitable contribution. For the excess amount to qualify, you must pay it with the intent to make a charitable contribution.

PCI: The Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) is a set of security standards designed to ensure that ALL companies that accept, process, store or transmit credit card information maintain a secure environment.

One-Time Rule: Constituent societies must not exceed one-time their annual allocation in their fund balance by the close of the annual IUAA audit.