Membership certificates are issued to those who have an ownership interest in an European campus. An ownership interest in an European campus referred to as a membership interest. Membership certificates are similar to stock certificates, except for the fact that they are issued by IECs instead of corporations. However, there are some differences between the two. IEC abide by the laws of the state in which they are created. States tend to be very flexible in the rules that govern IECs so long as IECs abide by their own operating agreements.