There are numerous associations for the security and investigative career industry. These organizations provide numerous benefits to their members, including networking, membership-only services, discounts, and training. The membership dues for some of these organizations are sometimes quite steep. However, many of these associations provide student membership pricing to students of universities and, in some cases, even to high schools. Therefore, instead of paying prices such as $100 or $150 per year, students may pay low prices such as $25 annually.
In most cases, they receive all the same materials and access as general members and may even receive further discounts on association materials and courses. For instance, the American Society for Industrial Security, more commonly known by its acronym ASIS, provides students free virtual and on-site access passes to its premier annual event, GSX. Regular ASIS members paid as much as $1,195 to attend the conference in 2023.
Which of these associations is right for you? There are certainly plenty of them. A simple internet search can return an overwhelming number of results. Which ones best fit you will depend on your career and educational goals. Conducting the same simple research you will do in school can help you identify which associations are considered the highest in their field. Research your professors’ background. Suppose your professor heads a security or internal investigations unit in a Fortune 500 company. In that case, they probably know a thing or two about which associations to be a part of and which certifications to pursue. Look at their university bios and their LinkedIn profiles. Alternatively, ask them which ones they recommend and even those they do not.
Some associations provide immediate benefits that can help you while you are in college. For instance, the University of New Haven provides a 20% discount to members of various industry associations such as ASIS. Therefore, the $20 student membership fee can potentially save you thousands of dollars in tuition. The publications distributed by these organizations can serve as reference material for your studies that your peers may be unable to access. Therefore, it helps your work stand out.
Listed below is a sampling of investigations and security associations that have student-discounted rates:
Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE): $25
American Society for Industrial Security (ASIS) $20
Electronic Security Association $50
IEEE Computer Security Society $40
International Association of Law Enforcement Intelligence Analysts $25
International Organization of Black Security Executives $25
Information Systems Security Association $30
National Cyber Security Student Association $20
Security Industry Association (SIA) $20
Women in International Security (WIIS) $35