AAUW and Colleges/Universities: Glossary of Commonly Used Terms

Whether you’re a member leader who’s had a strong relationship with your local college or a student learning about AAUW for the first time, it’s helpful to know the terminology AAUW uses when talking about colleges and universities. This glossary is a tool for differentiating between terms and finding commonly used definitions.



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AAUW Start Smart Salary Negotiation Workshops

College women entering the job market need the confidence, knowledge, and skills required to negotiate their salaries and benefits. AAUW Start Smart workshops empower students across the country with practical strategies to negotiate for fair and equitable salaries upon graduation.


Campus Action Projects are annual, grant-funded, student-led projects that put AAUW’s latest research into action.

National Conference for College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL)

A leadership conference with workshops, speakers, and networking opportunities that AAUW hosts every year for college women students.

National Student Advisory Council (SAC)

A yearlong leadership program for 10 college women who serve as AAUW ambassadors on their campuses.

State Student Advisory Council

A state-organized and state-managed leadership program. State student advisory councils are similar in structure to the National Student Advisory Council but focus on local AAUW activities. Learn more about starting your own state SAC.

Student Organization

A group of students at a college or university who want to form an official AAUW-affiliated group. AAUW student organizations need not be located on an AAUW member campus.


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C/U chair

The branch or state officer responsible for coordinating C/U outreach and programs. This person is a liaison between AAUW and the C/U representative.

C/U committee

A group of volunteer member leaders who collaborate with national AAUW staff. The C/U committee helps staff and AAUW affiliates market and implement the college/university member and student associate programs.

C/U Representative

The designated official contact person for AAUW on a member campus who serves as a liaison between AAUW and the school’s faculty, students, and staff. Each member may appoint two C/U reps, each of whom receives a free AAUW national membership (valued at $59).


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C/U member

An institution that is a dues-paying AAUW college/university member. AAUW college/university membership runs from July 1 through June 30 and includes special benefits for students, faculty, and staff.

Memberships for Students of AAUW C/U Members

Undergraduates or degree-seeking graduates enrolled in full-time or part-time programs may join and renew at no cost with automatic renewal through graduation. Also referred to as student associates.

Membership for Students of Non-AAUW C/U Members

Undergraduates or degree-seeking graduates enrolled in full-time or part-time programs may join and renew at a rate of $18.81 through graduation.


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An abbreviated way of referring to a college or university — any two- or four-year educational institution that offers recognized associate, baccalaureate, or higher degrees and has full regional accreditation or appropriate professional association approval.

Member Services Database (MSD)

The online source for AAUW’s national database records. Presidents, membership vice presidents, and C/U chairs can view a list of current C/U members, C/U representatives, and student associates in the MSD.