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Friends of the International Center:
Mission and Procedures

Mission Statement:

The purpose of the Friends of the International Center, a nonprofit organization, shall be to support international education, to foster friendship, understanding, and cooperation within the international community, and to create a meeting place on the UC San Diego campus for people who share these aims.

Board of Directors:

Meetings of the Board of Directors are called by the President to conduct the business of the Friends of the International Center. The Full Board includes Elected Officers and all Program and Committee Chairs. Members of the Board of Directors are expected to attend all board meetings (one full board meeting each quarter and one in the summer for program planning) unless excused by the President. It is hoped that each member will support as many of the Friends programs as possible. The Dean of International Education and Director of the International Center, as Chancellor's designate, is a voting member of the Friends Board.

Executive Committee

The bylaws specify that the following are members of the Executive Committee of the Board:  President, First Vice President (Programs), Second Vice President (Membership), Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary, Treasurer, Financial Advisor, and the Immediate Past-President. All are elected by the Membership at the Annual Meeting except for the Immediate Past President and the Financial Advisor. The Executive Committee of the Board conducts the business of the Friends between full Board meetings and makes recommendations to the full Board for action when needed. The Executive Committee can authorize expenditures of no more than $1000 per month. Members of the Executive Committee are expected to attend all Executive Committee meetings and all full Board Meetings. These meetings are usually held on the second Tuesday of the month, but may also be called by the President at any time.


The President shall serve as the chief executive officer of the Friends of the International Center and shall preside at all meetings of the Board of Directors, the Executive Committee, and the Membership. S/he shall give notice of all meetings of the Friends of the International Center and the Board of Directors. The President shall appoint chairmen of standing committees and all other committees subject to approval of the Board of Directors. The President shall be an ex officio member of all committees (except the Nominating Committee). In addition, the President shall have such powers and duties as may be prescribed by the Board of Directors.

First Vice President (Programs):

The First Vice President (Programs) shall confer with the President from time to time in connection with the affairs of the Friends of the International Center and shall in the absence or disability of the President assume the duties and exercise the power of the President.

The First Vice President shall help to plan, coordinate, and oversee programs as needed and shall perform other duties as may be assigned by the President or the Board of Directors. One or more Programs Advisors may be appointed by the Board to serve as a resource to the First Vice President and assist with individual programs. Program Advisor(s) is (are) expected to attend Board meetings and has/have collectively one vote.

The First Vice President shall organize the annual meeting of the Membership, usually in late May or early June. The date should be set by June 30 for the following year. S/he will decide with other Board members about a gift for the outgoing president and be ready to present it at the Annual Meeting and Awards Dinner.

The First Vice President shall maintain the Friends Calendar of Events and Meetings and assure that these activities are scheduled on the IC master calendar and that Friends members are kept informed of upcoming events. S/he shall keep a record of upcoming travel and other absences of Board members.

Second Vice President (Membership):

The Second Vice President (Membership) shall be responsible for maintaining and promoting membership in the Friends of the International Center. S/he may appoint and chair such committees as may be necessary to develop and implement plans for membership solicitation and for coordinating these plans with other committees. The Second Vice President shall maintain a list of current members with their class of membership.

On a monthly basis, the Second Vice President shall send a membership renewal letter to those whose membership will expire during the current month. S/he shall keep a record of responses, including name, date, address, telephone, email, and the amount of the check. For non-responders, s/he shall send follow-up letters or make phone calls as needed. S/he shall give the names of all who give a donation above membership levels to the Corresponding Secretary so that thank you notes may be sent. Corporate members shall be invoiced upon their renewal due date.

For new members, the Second Vice President shall see that they are entered into the computer database. For renewals, the renewal date should be changed and the existing data checked and corrected, if needed. S/he should keep a record of returned newsletters. S/he shall advise the Communications Chair of new and changed emails for the Listserv.  S/he shall provide mailing labels for the printed Newsletter.

S/he shall keep the Friends database up to date in a format consistent with that needed for the preparation of the Friends Directory. The Directory shall be produced every year, or as directed by the Board. Every six months a current membership list shall be printed and posted in the Friends Office. S/he also maintains and updates email addresses.

All new members shall be sent a Welcome Letter, Directory, and any other information requested. Prospective members shall be sent a letter with the Friends Brochure and any other information requested. In the fall, the Second Vice President shall prepare an end-of-year donation request letter, to be approved by the UCSD Support Group Analyst and signed by the President(s), to be sent to all members.

The Second Vice President shall compile statistics monthly as to the number of regular members, life members, and corporate members for the statistics database and to report to the Friends Board. S/he shall prepare a short Membership Report for the Friends Newsletter (new members, statistics, etc.) on a regular basis.

Recording Secretary:

The Recording Secretary shall keep an accurate record of the proceedings of all meetings of the Board of Directors, the Executive Committee, and the general membership meetings. In the absence of the Recording Secretary, the President may appoint a temporary secretary.

The Recording Secretary shall give detailed written minutes to the President as soon as possible after the meeting for review and corrections. The final minutes shall be given to the President and each Board member at least one week before the next Board meeting. As appropriate, this may be done by email.

The Recording Secretary maintains the official record of the Friends business and sees that copies of all minutes, rosters, agendas, etc., are kept in chronological order and available in the Friends Office.

Corresponding Secretary:

The Corresponding Secretary shall carry on the general correspondence of the organization, including letters of appreciation and condolence. S/he shall keep a file of all correspondence. S/he shall obtain from the Treasurer or Second Vice President (Membership) information on substantial donations, such as for scholarships or memorial gifts, and send appropriate letters. S/he shall stay in contact with the President and other board members and see that recognition of illnesses, birthdays, and celebrations are recognized when appropriate.


The Treasurer shall be the chief fiscal officer and shall receive all funds paid to the Friends and deposit all such funds in a bank or savings institution (chosen at the recommendation of the Treasurer and approval of the Board of Directors). S/he shall pay all bills and keep detailed accounts of the assets, liabilities, receipts and disbursements.

The Treasurer shall prepare a written financial report for the Board of Directors or the Executive Committee at each monthly meeting. S/he shall prepare an annual budget to be submitted for approval at the first meeting of the Executive Committee and subsequent Board meeting after the Annual Meeting. S/he shall monitor the budget throughout the year, making recommendations to the Board as needed.

The Treasurer keeps the financial records for the Friends and sees that copies of all monthly reports are kept in chronological order and are available in the Friends Office.

The Treasurer shall open the books for the purpose of an annual audit by the Audit Committee and for inspection at any time by the Board of Directors. S/he shall work with the Financial Advisor(s) on all matters that pertain to the budget, taxes, money, etc.

Financial Advisor:

The Financial Advisor is appointed by the Board of Directors, upon recommendation of the President, and is responsible for preparation and submission of the following:

  1. Federal Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax (Form 990)
  2. California Exempt Organization Annual Information Return (Form 199)
  3. Registration /Renewal Fee Report to Attorney General of Calif (Form RRF-1)
  4. Statement of Officers by Domestic Nonprofit Corporation filed with California Secretary of State (Form 100)
  5. Annual Financial Report to the UCSD Campus Support Group Office

Since the now defunct International Cooperative Nursery School operated under the auspices of the Friends of the International Center, the Financial Advisor shall maintain a file of the relevant financial reports of the nursery school for as long as is legally required.

Although the Financial Advisor is not an elected officer of the Friends, s/he shall serve as a voting member of the Board and the Executive Committee to assist and advise on money matters, taxes, etc. S/he shall work with the Treasurer on all financial matters and shall assist in the preparation and monitoring of the annual budget.

Friends Programs


The Chair of the Scholarships Committee assembles a committee of application readers which meets in November for spring scholarships and in April or May for fall scholarships. S/he shall determine the amount of funding available through regular contact the Director and two Assistant Directors of the International Center, OGSR, and undergraduate scholarship offices. S/he schedules and coordinates the meetings, notifies the successful students, informs them of when/where the scholarships will come, etc. and of the need for a report.

The Chair of the Scholarships Committee notifies scholarships recipients and invites them to attend the Friends Annual Dinner in early June where s/he introduces them, presents certificates (and checks when appropriate), sees that photos are taken, and attends to all other details. S/he also contacts those unable to attend the Annual Dinner and invites them to attend another Friends function, such as a Board meeting or the annual Resale Shop Appreciation Luncheon.

Wednesday Coffee:

Under the coordination of the Chair of Wednesday Coffees, spouses and young children of visiting scholars and students meet at the International Center Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to noon. This has been one of the best-attended outreach programs presented by the Friends, and serves as the umbrella for a number of other activities (such as language tables, child-free group, quilting, Knit-Along, etc.).

International Cooking Experience:

The International Cooking Experience Coordinator is responsible for scheduling all International Cooking Experience classes, staffing those classes, recruiting students, and publishing the proper instructional documentation for the students. S/he assures that program is economically viable and that standards are maintained in both instruction and in health and safety. S/he makes certain the facilities are set up and the kitchen remains clean before and after each class is given.

Family Orientation:

On the first and third Wednesdays of each month, while International Center staff meets with newly arrived scholars, the Family Orientation program welcomes their spouses and dependents for an orientation for family members. The intent of the program is to assist newcomers with settling into their new surroundings, to help them meet people, and to acquaint them with the resources available to them through the International Center and the Friends. Topics include getting to know the San Diego community, travel to and from the campus and in the area, weathering culture shock, resources for improving English language skills, and a tour of the International Center.

Special Events: Ethnic Dinners

Long a tradition at the International Center, Ethnic Dinners are held once or twice a year to raise money for the Friends' Scholarship program. The coordinator of Ethnic Dinners plans, recruits cooks and other helpers, and oversees all aspects of the dinner.

Other Special Events and celebrations may be scheduled from time to time, and Friends members are notified by the Friends Newsletter and by email.

Artpower! Suppers

The coordinator of the ArtPower! Suppers works with UC San Diego's ArtPower! Program and International Center Staff to offer a light buffet supper at the International Center preceding a program at Mandeville Hall. The coordinator oversees the event, usually two or three each year, while International Center staff members cater the meal. The menu is planned to reflect food typical of the country from which the performers come.

Committees and Other Assignments


The Editor of the Friends Newsletter is responsible for the publication of 10 monthly issues. Recently these have been 12 pages in length containing an interesting mixture of information about upcoming events, programs, staff and committee reports, our membership, and our scholarship recipients. The Newsletter is also posted on-line, and notice is sent to all members when it is available.

The mailing list is maintained by the Office Manager or Second Vice President (Membership). Circulation is handled by volunteers, usually around the 23rd of the month. Labels are sorted by zip code, printed, and affixed to each Newsletter. Copies of specific Newsletter issues are also sent to outside contributors and/or those prominently featured; when possible such issues are sent electronically by the editor; when no email address is available, the Newsletter editor will provide circulation with the available U.S. Postal Service address. The Newsletters are then bundled by zip code according to Bulk Mail requirements and delivered to the UCSD mailroom.

Resale Shop:

The Resale Shop is a thrift shop located in the International Center complex. Proceeds primarily fund scholarships for international education at UC San Diego.  The Shop Coordinator recruits and schedules the 30-40 volunteers who staff the Shop year-round. Additionally, the Coordinator accepts, sorts, and prices donations, and s/he communicates to the Board, volunteers, and others as needed. Minimum time commitment for shop volunteers is 3 hours a week during the academic year and less frequently during the summer.  The coordinator spends 15-20 hours a week year round.

Nominating Committee:

The Nominating Committee shall consist of five members, three of whom are elected by the membership at the annual meeting from a slate presented by the preceding Nominating Committee. The Board of Directors shall appoint the remaining two members and an alternate, if desired, at the first Board meeting following the annual meeting. The Board shall appoint a chair who is expected to attend Board meetings and will have one vote.

The Nominating Committee shall meet no later than January to begin preparation of a slate of nominees for the following offices: President, First Vice President (Programs), Second Vice President (Membership), Recording Secretary, Corresponding Secretary, Treasurer, and three members of the next Nominating Committee. The final slate shall be presented to the Board at it April meeting, published in the May Newsletter, and voted at the subsequent Annual Meeting.

The Nominating Committee shall review the bylaws and job descriptions of the officers so nominees can be advised on what is expected. Elected officers may serve two consecutive terms.

Kitchen Committee:

The Kitchen Committee is composed of all Friends who regularly use the kitchen in their on-going programs, along with the staff members who coordinate the Friday Café and who are responsible for health and safety at the International Center. The committee is responsible for assuring that kitchen equipment and supplies adequately meet the needs of such IC programs as the Friday Café, Ethnic Dinners, Wednesday Coffee, Cooking in America, International Kitchen Lunches, etc.

The Committee will conduct an annual inventory of the kitchen, compare it with the previous inventory, to determine what, if anything, is missing and should be replaced. The Chair of the Kitchen Committee, the Friends President, and the International Center Dean will meet and decide on proposed actions.


The Communications Coordinator regularly checks the Friends telephone voice mail and email and forwards messages as appropriate. S/he sends notification of online Newsletter availability to Friends members, International Center Staff, and UC San Diego contacts in a timely manner. S/he maintains the Friends listserv to facilitate email communications with the membership.


The Historian keeps scrapbooks and photo albums up to date, taking photos of the Friends activities during the year and including flyers and programs as appropriate.


The Parliamentarian, appointed by the President, shall advise on parliamentary procedures at Board meetings and the Annual Meeting. S/he shall review the bylaws annually and shall propose changes where necessary to the Board. Roberts Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall serve as procedural guidelines except when in conflict with the bylaws. The Board of Directors shall decide any conflict by vote.


The Chair of the Publicity Committee shall maintain a list of campus and community publications that the Friends might wish to use in publicizing their activities and events. This list should include how to contact, deadlines and publication requirements for articles and photographs. S/he should attend Board meetings to determine what events need to be publicized, where and when.

The Chair of the Publicity Committee shall report on Friends activities, such as the awarding of scholarships, to the university community.

Campus Support Group Advisor:

The Campus Support Group Advisor is appointed by the Board of Directors, upon recommendation of the President, and is responsible for keeping the Friends in compliance with University regulations and procedures regarding support groups.

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