Student Membership FAQ
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 1.      What are the requirements for becoming a student member?
·        Must be a freshman, sophomore, junior, senior, or graduate student in an accredited college or university.
·        Enrolled in a minimum of 8 units under the quarter system, or 6 units under the semester system.
·        Academic course work must have a Human Resources emphasis or be closely related.
·        Unemployed or working 20 hours or less per week, not receiving benefits.
·        Proof of Eligibility:
o   Submit Current class schedule. 
o   Signed Faculty approval form.
·        Payment of $30 for Student Membership. 
2.     Can I join PIHRA online?
Yes! You may join online as long as you meet the eligibility requirements. To join online, visit
3.     What telephone number should I use to fax my student application?
The fax number is (310) 416-9055.
4.     What are the dues for student membership?
Student membership dues are $30 per year.  Some school based locations may collect additional dues to use for projects.  If you wish to attend one of the 17 PIHRA location meetings, you may be charged a fee to attend. 
5.     What are the differences between a student and a professional membership?
The cost difference between the two memberships is significant.  Student members pay $30 for an annual membership, while professional members pay $150 for an annual membership.  Students can renew each year for $30, while professional members renew each year at $125 (if renewal payment is received before membership expiration). 

Other than the cost of membership, student members are not voting members and cannot hold a leadership office.  Student members do receive access to all other services available to PIHRA professional members.  In additional, students may be eligible for student discounts to events and activities (when available).
6.     Do students have to join at the beginning of a semester or quarter?
No. The membership does not run on a calendar year.  It is based on the anniversary date of your membership. Students can join PIHRA anytime throughout the year and will receive a full 12 months of service from that time.  If mailed or faxed, please note it will take 1-2 weeks for the application to be processed.
7.     I am working in HR, but I am also a student?  Should I join as a student or a professional member?
Student members are individuals who are full-time students, pursuing a career in Human Resources.  These individuals are not employed on a full-time basis.  Below is a table outlining the student membership and other relevant memberships.  PIHRA offers a discount off of regular membership prices for individuals who attend school on a part time basis.
Student Members Professional Members General Members At Large Members
Individuals who are students with a bona fide interest in pursuing human resource work.
Do not work more than 20 hours per week or receive benefits. 
Student members have no vote and may not hold a leadership office in PIHRA. 
Individuals who are engaged or have been engaged in the field or profession of human resource management and who meet one of the following criteria:
  • Three years of exempt-level human resource management experience.
  • Certified by the Human Resource Certification Institute.
  • Faculty members at an accredited college/university and have at least three years of experience in position.
  • Full-time consultants with at least three years experience in human resource management.
  • Attorneys licensed to practice in California and who have practiced management employment or labor law for at least three years.
Individuals who do not meet the requirements of Professional Membership. Individuals who reside outside Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino & Ventura counties.
8.     How many locations does PIHRA have and where are they?
Currently, PIHRA has 17 locations throughout Greater Los Angeles, including Orange County, Ventura County and Riverside County.  Each location has a strong volunteer leadership team that hosts monthly meetings that include an educational component. 
Please visit for information about the locations’ meeting schedule and venue. 

9.     Can I still become a student member without choosing a location?
No.  PIHRA students must select a location as it is a benefit of their PIHRA membership.  PIHRA locations provide a venue for students to network with HR professionals and attend value added educational programs.  However, student members are not required to attend monthly location meetings.  If a student chapter exists at the student member’s campus, they should participate in those activities. 
10.   What does a PIHRA student chapter do?
PIHRA student chapters have regular meetings with scheduled programs designed to help members learn more about HR and the real world of business. Elected student officers run the chapters with the assistance of a chapter advisor and sponsoring professional PIHRA chapter members.

Chapters invite local business people to speak to the members about current developments in the business world and how they will impact future workers. Beyond the regular meetings, chapters organize a variety of activities including company tours, student conferences, resume-writing and interviewing workshops, fundraisers, internship programs, and social events. These activities allow you to learn more about HRM while building relationships with local professionals and other students and of course, having fun!
11.   If there is no PIHRA chapter at my school, can I still be a member of the Society?
Yes. You will not be assigned to a student chapter, but you will be affiliated with one of our 17 locations.  It will be your choice in terms of which location you would like to affiliate with and attend on a regular basis.  If student chapters exist at neighboring campuses, you are welcome to participate in their activities with the consent of that chapter.

PIHRA has student chapters at the following campuses:

·        California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
·        California State University, Long Beach
·        California State University, Los Angeles
·        California State University, Dominquez Hills
·        Devry University, Pomona
·        Loyola Marymount University (in formation)

12.  There is no chapter on my campus. How can I get a chapter advisor's signature on my application?
In lieu of a chapter advisor, you may have your faculty advisor, a professor or a representative from your college registrar's office sign the form.
13.  Who should I contact if I need further information?
If you did not find an answer to your question here, please feel free to contact PIHRA Member Care at (310) 416-1210 or email
14.  How do students renew their memberships? 
You have options:
1.     Return a renewal invoice with payment.
2.     Renew online with a credit card; it’s easy.  Log on to with your username at the top right of the home page.  If you don’t remember your password, contact PIHRA at 310-416-1210 or, and we will reset it for you.  Once logged on, you will see a page with My Profile at the top.  You can renew by clicking on Membership Renewal (left hand side of the screen) and following the commands. 
15.  I'm graduating soon, can I still keep my student membership?
Yes, the student membership guarantees members a full 12 months of service. Once it expires, you can take advantage of our exclusive offer to upgrade your student membership to an official membership and save $45 on a professional membership or general membership.
16.  What are the rules for converting from student to professional membership?
The basic rules are as follows: 

·        Students must be a PIHRA student member.
·        If the student membership expires, they may convert to a professional membership within one month after their student membership expiration date.  They can do this returning the student renewal notice or by calling PIHRA Member Care at 310-416-1210.

17.   Can membership in PIHRA help me find a job after graduation?
Yes. Research indicates that 60-70% of jobs are found through personal contacts, or networking. Becoming part of PIHRA gives you access to our network of more than 4,000 members in 17 locations. While PIHRA does not offer formal job placement assistance, we do offer the opportunity to meet and build relationships with the HR professionals who represent potential employers. Many of our student members have obtained entry-level jobs and internships through the connections they made as active members of PIHRA.
18.   I'm studying business but I'm not an HR major. How would PIHRA membership benefit me?
In order to be a successful manager, an individual must possess strong interpersonal and supervisory skills. Being engaged as a PIHRA student member will help you to better understand and develop these skills. In addition, many of the issues you will explore as a member of PIHRA such as effective management practices, employee motivation, violence in the workplace, and sexual harassment, will be relevant to you whether you become an accounting manager, a sales manager, or a human resource manager. Everyone in business works with people in some way.
19.   I'm currently a professional member, can I switch to a student membership and get a refund? 
No, students who are in established, professional roles would retain their current PIHRA membership status. Existing professional members would not be eligible to downgrade to student membership.  Upon renewal, PIHRA will consider a petition for a student membership or a part-time student discount, if the individual meets the eligibility requirements.
20.   If my college considers me a full-time student, am I eligible for membership?
We base eligibility on credit hours, not full-time versus part-time status. You must have a minimum of 8 units under the quarter system, or 6 units under the semester system. If you need to discuss this requirement, please contact Member Care at or (310) 416-1210.
21.   I am enrolled in a Human Resources Management Certificate Program. Am I eligible for student membership?
No. Students must be enrolled in a degree-seeking program, such as a Bachelor's degree, and taking a minimum number of credits as indicated previously. 

While certificate programs are worthwhile educational opportunities, they do not qualify you for student membership. Please see eligibility requirements. However, we do offer individuals who are attending at least one course a part-time student discount.

Please see eligibility requirements for the Part-Time Student discount below. 

Part-Time Student Discount Eligibility

An example of an individual who may not completely meet the student membership requirements is an individual who works a full-time job, and is enrolled in a Human Resource course at UCLA Extension.  Below are some guidelines that we use to determine if an individual is eligible for the part-time student discount. 

1.     Must be enrolled in a minimum of one course at an accredited college or university.
2.     Program course work must have a Human Resources emphasis or be closely related.
3.     Proof of Eligibility:
           a.   Submit Current class schedule. 
           b.   Signed Faculty approval form.
4.     Payment of PIHRA Membership minus $50 discount. 


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