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News & Events: Members

July 1, 2016 News Bulletin

Friday, July 01, 2016  
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Dear SCMS Members,


The Board of Directors met last week in Chicago to discuss a myriad of important topics impacting SCMS policies, procedures, and finances.  Among the topics of discussion were annual conference participation, conference registration rates, proposal submission processes, revisions to Caucus and SIG policies, the addition of a new membership tier, and institutional membership rates.  We wish to make you aware of each of the forthcoming changes as well as the rationale behind each of our decisions. 



Annual Conference Participation


In order to ensure broader participation at the conference, without increasing the size of the conference, as of July 1, 2016, SCMS will now limit members to one role at the conference (as opposed to the former limit of two).  SCMS members may now only participate in a workshop OR give a paper on a panel. You may chair the panel or workshop in which you participate but may not serve as chair or respondent on another panel. We apologize if this frustrates, but this policy is in line with rules of most other major conferences and is intended to allow more voices to speak.



Conference Registration Rates



The cost of producing SCMS’s annual conference is on the rise.  For the 2016 Atlanta conference, our hotel costs alone were up 10% from the 2015 conference in Montreal.  For 2017 and beyond, we are expecting increases to be significantly higher.  A key reason for the increase in costs is the strengthening of the economy. It is becoming more and more difficult for a non-profit such as ours to negotiate favorable hotel deals that include the space and amenities our conference requires.  As a means of keeping up with our costs and continuing to provide you with the level of services you expect, conference registration will increase this year as follows:



Student:  $90.00

Non-Student (member, non-member):  $160.00



Student:  $140.00

Non-Student (member, non-member):  $220.00





Student:  $150.00

Non-Student (member, non-member):  $230.00


The increases equate to a $15 increase for student registrations and a $25 increase for non-students.  We have added a new on-site category which adds an additional $10 to each of the regular pre-registration rates.



Proposal Submission Processes



The conference proposal system for SCMS’s 2017 conference in Chicago will go live at 9:00 a.m. CT on Friday, July 1 and will remain open until Wednesday, August 31 at 5:00 p.m. CT.  The deadline is firm so please plan accordingly.  Late proposals will not be accepted.


In an effort to ensure that your proposal submission experience is a positive one and to increase the likelihood of your proposal being accepted, 2017 Conference Program Chair and President-Elect Pam Wojcik has put together some very useful tips.  “Submitting a Proposal to SCMS: Guide to Success” can be found here. 


New Policies for Scholarly Interest Groups



Member Re-enrollment in SIGs:

SCMS members are being asked to renew their membership in Scholarly Interest Groups every five years at the time of their SCMS membership renewal. The first re-enrollment period will take place this summer and fall, beginning Friday, July 15. SIGs that were formed within the last two years will not be affected. For other SIGs, SCMS members will need to re-affiliate through the SCMS website. Emails will be sent to all SCMS members reminding them to complete this process. As of right now, there’s no fee to join SCMS SIGs, and SCMS members may affiliate with as many SIGs and Caucuses as they wish.

To enroll or re-enroll in the SIG(s) of your choosing after July 15, simply check off the box next the respective group name(s) when you renew your SCMS membership or, if you have already renewed, find the SIG's webpage via the left-hand sidebar on our website and follow the link to join at the bottom of the page. We do encourage SCMS members to only affiliate with groups with which they plan to actively participate.

After this re-enrollment period, SIGs will have two years to demonstrate that they can again reach the expected number of members (30) to remain in good standing. This stipulation will not apply to Caucuses because of their distinct mission and function.

Annual review of SIG funding requests:

Scholarly Interest Groups may request up to $500 in funding assistance from SCMS, with total funding for SIGs now capped at $15,500 annually. Eligible 2017 expenses include but are not limited to expenditures for food and drink at SIG meetings or receptions, guest speaker or graduate student travel, scholarly awards, and co-sponsorship of conference events.


To qualify for SCMS funding, SIG co-chairs are being asked for the first time to submit advance proposals outlining the planned expenditures by Nov. 28, 2016. The SIG funding request form can be found here (requires sign-in).

Proposals will be reviewed by the SIG Funding Committee, a new annual committee of SCMS, to consist of the two SIG Coordinating Committee co-chairs, the two SCMS Board liaisons to the SIGs, the SCMS Treasurer, and a representative from the home office. All proposals will be approved if they meet the new posted guidelines, based on the availability of funds. Proposals that demonstrate forethought and planning for scholarly purposes will be prioritized.

Questions regarding proposals and the review process can be directed to Mary Beltran, Co-Liaison from the SCMS Board to the SIGs, or to the SCMS home office.

The home office will notify each SIG regarding the status of their proposal in mid-December.  Approved expenses will be reimbursed upon submission of receipts, after each conference. For full details regarding reimbursable expenses, please visit the SIG Funding Requests page. If unexpended by June 30, 2017, these funds revert to the SCMS general fund.

New Funding Request Form for Caucuses:

As before, SCMS allocates $600 in funding for each SCMS Caucus in good standing.  Eligible expenses include the same items as listed above for SIGs. The Caucus Funding Request Form can be found here (requires sign-in). 


New Graduate Student Membership Category



Beginning this membership year (September 1 through August 31), we have added a new Graduate Student category for membership.  The renewal base rates will be the same as last year, but the new category is intended to facilitate tracking of graduate student membership numbers:


Graduate Student Membership Rates:

U.S.:  $55/year

Canada:  *$89/year

Mexico/International: **$101/year


*includes the previously announced postage increase of $4

**includes previously announced postage increase of $2


Individual membership can be renewed now here. 


Institutional Membership Rates



In an effort to bolster institutional membership, the SCMS board has created several new options for added value that we will begin offering immediately.

The new options include:


  • 50% discount on one half-page or quarter-page ad in the conference program OR 10% discount on up to ten (10) student memberships
  • Free website ad accessible via institutional membership list posted on the SCMS website
  • Free ad within the conference app
  • Added link from institutional membership page to institutional members' websites


Institutional rates have been increased as follows:

  • $350 – institutions offering undergraduate programs; libraries and museums
  • $450 – institutions offering MA or MFA programs 
  • $500 – institutions offering PhD programs


Complete information on institutional membership can be found here



We value each of you and the unique contributions you make to SCMS.  In creating and enacting the many changes described above, it is our aim to make your membership increasingly valuable while, at the same time, strengthening SCMS’s foundation for years to come.  Please let us know if you have questions or concerns.



Best regards,


The SCMS Board of Directors


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