Constitution and By-Laws

Constitution of the

African American Student Association at

University of California, Merced

The 30th day of September 2005

2005-2006 School Year

Preamble

We, the members of the African American Student Association at UC Merced, establish to provide and foster the awareness and appreciation of the African American culture and history.

 

Article I

Name of Organization

The official name of the organization shall be the African American Student Association hereinafter referred to as A.A.S.A.

 

Article II

Purpose

The purpose of this organization shall be to foster and promote the appreciation and awareness of the African American culture and history. The A.A.S.A. exists to enhance political awareness, social tolerance, and academic success and to provide support for students on campus and in the community.

 

Article III

Membership Practice

Active membership of this student organization shall be chosen without discrimination or the basis of race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, color, disability, national origin, age, or marital status, except in the cases of fraternity and sorority organizations which are exempt by federal law from Title IX Regulations concerning discriminations on the basis of sex.

 

  1. Eligibility for membership

All students, faculty, and staff at UC Merced are eligible for membership. At least 50% of the organizations active membership should be composed of UC Merced undergraduate and graduate students. Students enrolled at the University’s Extension Center do not count towards the minimum requirement.

 

  1. Criteria or qualification for membership

All students at the University of California, Merced who are full-time or part-time students must meet a minimum of 2.5 GPA* to be considered for membership. All candidates for membership must complete a general information sheet including the reason for joining.

 

C. Categories of membership

1. Active-Members must be registered with the A.A.S.A., be in possession of a membership card, and have his/her dues paid for the current year.

 

2. Inactive-Members who have not registered with the A.A.S.A. and/or who do not possess membership card. He/she may participate in general meetings, but HOLD NO VOTING RIGHTS.

3. Honorary-Members who have been recognized and recommended by the general body of the A.A.S.A. Honorary members are not required to pay dues or participate in service projects. They possess a membership card but do not have voting rights.

4. Every voting person gets one and only one vote. The primary exception is in the event of a tie, the President shall provide the final vote to make or break a tie. The executive board shall not hold a vote in general elections.

 

  1. Withdrawal or removal of a General Member
    1. Charges or complaints must be presented against an individual. After which, the individual must be given an opportunity to argue a defense and offer counter evidence. A general vote will be taken and counted and an appeal process will be made by vote and only one level of appeal is required. All active members have the right to request removal or withdrawal of a member.
    2. In order to file an appeal, one must complete a personal statement indicating the reasons one should not be removed. It will be reviewed by the executive board and they will vote with the President executing the final tie-breaking vote.

 

Article IV

Officers

There shall be eight officers for the African American Student Association and they shall be:

  1. List of Officers
    1. President
    2. 1st Vice President of Campus Affairs
    3. 2nd Vice President of Community Affairs
    4. 3rd Vice President of Communications
    5. Treasurer
    6. Secretary
    7. Parliamentarian
    8. Historian

 

  1. General Duties and Responsibilities of Officers
    1. President

i. The President shall ensure the general success of the association and will see that all plans are carried through. The President has the right to issue and executive order.

ii. The President shall be responsible for conducting the meetings according to Robert’s Rules of Conduct.

iii. Along with the Executive Board, the President shall be responsible for preparing the agenda.

iv. The President shall authenticate by signature, all acts, orders, and proceedings of the general assembly.

v. The President shall be the keeper of the A.A.S.A. Constitution and By-laws.

vi. The President shall hold the officers and members accountable.

vii. The President shall be the primary representative of the A.A.S.A., unless otherwise elected for and by the general assembly.

viii. The President, along with the 1st Vice President of Campus Affairs, shall be responsible for recruiting new members.

    1. 1st Vice President of Campus Affairs

i. Shall be responsible for Campus Affairs and ensure the success of the organization and see that all plans are carried out concerning Campus Affairs.

ii. Along with the President, shall hold the other members and officers accountable.

iii. Shall inform the President and the General Assembly of any events concerning Campus Affairs.

iv. Shall act as President in the absence thereof in any meeting.

v. Along with the President, shall be responsible for recruiting new members.

    1. 2nd Vice President of Community Affairs

i. a. Shall be responsible for Community Affairs and ensure the success of the organization and see that all plans are carried out concerning Community Affairs.

ii. Along with the President and 1st VP, shall hold the other members and officers accountable.

iii. Shall inform the President and the General Assembly of any events concerning Community Affairs.

iv. Shall be responsible of coordinating anything of importance that the General Assembly deems fit that deals with the community.

v. Along with the President and 1st VP, shall be responsible for recruiting new members.

    1. 3rd Vice President of Communication

i. Shall be responsible for Communication and ensuring the success of the organization and see that all plans are carried through and communicated effectively.

ii. Along with the President and 1st and 2nd VP’s shall be responsible for holding the other members and officers accountable.

iii. Shall communicate with the President and General Assembly any events concerning Communication.

iv. Along with the President and VP’s shall be responsible in recruiting new members.

    1. Treasurer

i. Shall be responsible for the treasury of the A.A.S.A. and ensuring the financial success of the organization and see that all plans are carried through and communicated effectively.

ii. Along with the President and 1st and 2nd VP’s shall be responsible for holding the other members and officers accountable.

iii. Shall be responsible for all financial records concerning the A.A.S.A.

iv. Shall communicate with the President and General Assembly any events concerning the treasury.

v. Shall be the major figurehead regarding all approvals, budgets, reports, and accounts concerning A.A.S.A. checking for two appropriate signatures by both the Treasurer and the President.

vi. Shall be responsible for reporting to the President and the General Assembly.

vii. Shall be the head of the Budget and Finance Committee.

viii. Shall be responsible for recruiting new members.

    1. Secretary

i. Shall be responsible for recording the minutes of all meetings

ii. Shall keep all records, files, documents and anything concerning A.A.S.A.

iii. Shall be responsible for all correspondence on behalf of A.A.S.A.

iv. Along with the other officers, shall be responsible for recruiting new members,

    1. Parliamentarian

i. Shall be responsible for advising and training all members on conduct of Robert’s Rules of Order, the Constitution, and By-Laws.

ii. Shall be responsible for resolving all disputes as it pertains to conduct at all meetings.

iii. Shall by the keeper and enforcer of the Constitution and By-laws and conduct at meetings.

iv. Along with the other officers, shall recruit new members.

    1. Historian

i. Shall be responsible for recording all historical moments of the organization

ii. Shall be responsible for all historical representation and reproduction concerning the organization

iii. Shall maintain the A.A.S.A. Scrapbook as well as the website and Myspace and Facebook groups

iv. Shall head the Historian Committee

 

  1. Qualifications for becoming an Executive Board Officer
    1. All UC Merced students with a minimum of 2.8 cumulative G.P.A. are eligible for office; however members with specific skills and relevant experience will be given more consideration.

 

  1. Terms of Office
    1. All officers assume their positions at the beginning of the Fall Semester and shall hold officer for the full academic year.
    2. All elections shall be held as specified in Article V, Section A.
    3. Officers for the following year will be elected in the Spring Semester and the rest of the spring shall serve to transition the new officers. The new Executive Board will officially take office on the first day of the fall semester so that the old board can advise while the new board is in charge. This creates overlap in duties and a designated training period and makes the organization stronger.

 

  1. Procedure for Filling Vacated Offices
    1. In the event of a vacated office the following chain of command shall be adhered:

i. 1st Vice President

ii. 2nd Vice President

iii. 3rd Vice President

iv. Treasurer

v. Secretary

vi. Parliamentarian

    1. Appointments may be made as deemed necessary by 2/3 of the officers.

 

  1. Procedure for Removal of Officers
    1. Any active members may initiate the removal of an officer. The accuser must file a written complaint with the Executive Board and if validity is found in the claims than a closed hearing shall be conducted.
    2. Upon substantiation of the charges in the hearing in which a reasonable doubt of competency is established, a committee to present the accusations to the General Assembly shall be formed of five randomly selected general assembly members.
    3. Any officer planning to resign must submit a formal typed letter of resignation two weeks prior to resignation. At this time the officer will address the General Assembly.

 

  1. Appeal Policy
    1. Any member accused and convicted may appeal within a two week period to the General Assembly. A formal typed letter must be submitted with substantial reasoning.

 

Article V

Elections

  1. Terms
    1. Elections are held once a year in the Spring Semester for the following semester. In rare cases where officers are not fulfilling the duties of their job, such as not attending sufficient meetings and/or meeting the specified grade requirement, a re-election will occur to decide who will assume their position.

 

  1. Nominations
    1. There will be required application for anyone interested in holding a position on the Executive Board. There will not be individual or self-nomination because potential officers will have to get approval from members in a petition. The application will consist of a personal statement as well as a petition signed by fellow members. Upon receipt, the Executive Board will review the applications and choose the candidates for the election.

 

  1. Notification and posting of elections
    1. Once the Executive Board has come to a decision, they will announce it at the General Assembly meeting. The notification period will not exceed a two week time frame.

 

  1. Election Procedures
    1. Elections will take place the following Monday after the second week of the posting period in a special elections meeting. There will be a secret ballot for the elections. All active members need to be in attendance for the election to allow all candidates a fair chance. In order for a candidate to win, 2/3 or a majority of the votes must be obtained. Voting will only be permitted in person, so members will have to attend the special election meeting in order for their vote to be counted. All active members who have paid their dues are eligible to vote. One week will be reserved for campaigning and the second week candidates will give their speeches and elections will take place.

 

Article VI

Committees

  1. Types of Committees
    1. The major committee chairs will be elected during the election period. The Executive Board is responsible for making all administrative decisions regarding the organization and is ultimately the head of the organization. The Executive Members include the: President, 1st VP, 2nd VP, 3rd VP, Treasurer, Secretary, Parliamentarian, and Historian.
    2. The Publicity Committee is responsible for ensuring that announcements are made aware to the students. The 3rd VP of Communications is the Chair of the Publicity Committee.
    3. The Budget and Finance Committee is responsible for developing a budget, fundraisers, and dues. The Treasurer is the Chair.
    4. The Historian Committee is responsible for recording the organization’s history. The Historian is the Chair.
    5. Members are encouraged to volunteer on the committee of their choosing.
    6. The President has the right to call or approve ad hoc committees as needed.

 

Article VII

Meetings

  1. Types of Meetings
    1. There are two major types of meetings: Executive and General Assembly. Executive Board meetings are held weekly or biweekly to discuss any issues or concerns within the organization and to plan the agenda of the General Assembly meeting. All members are welcome to attend General Assembly meetings. General Assembly meetings are held to get out information and discuss topics of importance with the members of the organization. If a member consistently misses General Assembly meetings it will be suggested that they be removed from the organization.

 

  1. Time Frame and Occurrence of Meeting
    1. Executive Board Meetings are held once a week or every two weeks at a date determined at the beginning of the semester by 2/3 of the Executive Board. General Assembly meetings are held once a month at a date set by 2/3 of the Executive Board.

 

  1. Quorum
    1. The quorum will be two-thirds or a majority. If quorum does not exist then no decisions can be made until it does. If quorum isn’t reached within one or two meetings the Executive Board will take the decision under consideration and ultimately make the final decision.

 

  1. Method of Conducting Meetings
    1. Robert’s Rules of Order will govern the conduct of business for the organization.

 

  1. Meeting minutes and records
    1. It shall be the sole responsibility of the secretary to take minutes at each meeting and keep records of all meetings (which will include special and emergency meetings.) Minutes from the most recent meeting will be read at the beginning of each meeting. Any additions or comments will be made and a final approval of the minutes will be made.

 

Article VIII

Dues

UC Merced shall have the right to audit the financial records of the A.A.S.A. When dues are collected, it will be recorded, as well as the purpose for which the dues were collected.

 

  1. Dues/Membership Fees
    1. The dues for membership to A.A.S.A. shall be $20 for the entire academic year and should be paid before the middle of the fall semester. These dues finance the membership card, t-shirt, and various other club expenses. The treasurer shall be solely responsible for collecting the dues in coordination with the President. Members can pay their dues in installments as they wish but may not exercise full membership rights until dues are fully paid.

 

  1. Budget Expenditures
    1. The Executive Board will be responsible for authorizing all expenditures, however, members will vote for them. All expenditures shall be discussed and approved. As of now there is no required budget proposal, however, in the future one will be required for each year. The Executive Board will make the final decision in allocating funds but members will have a voice in how monies are spent. If there are funds left over at the end of the academic year, they shall be held in the campus account for the following year.

 

Article IX

Advisors

 

  1. Selection of Advisors
    1. The advisor shall be chosen by selection after the Executive Board has deliberated over the possible candidates.
    2. The Executive Board shall fully review all eligible faculty or staff members to judge who would best understand the needs of the organization based on our purpose and goals.

 

  1. Qualification
    1. The only criteria for a faculty or staff member to be considered for selection are that they be employed by the University.

 

  1. Terms of Office
    1. An advisor term will last for one full academic year. However, if the Executive Board and the advisor both agree to allow the current advisor to continue, then that shall be accepted.

 

Article X

Amendments

  1. All amendments shall be in agreement with UC Merced regulations and policies and are not approved until reviewed and signed by a Student Life official. Only the Executive Board members can propose an amendment to the Constitution. The amendment must be written and will be voted on in the following meeting.
  2. All amendments to the Constitution shall be approved by 2/3 or a majority of vote. An amendment can be proposed at any time during an Executive Board meeting. A signed copy of the amendment(s) shall be filled at the Student Life office within one week after adoption. All amendments shall be in agreement with the University regulations and policies and are not approved until reviewed and signed by a Student Life official.

 

By-Laws

African American Student Association

University of California, Merced

 

Article I: Membership

Section 1:

All active members who have paid their dues in full, possess a G.P.A. of 2.0 or higher, and have filled out a general information sheet that consists of contact information and their reasons for joining are official members of the African American Student Association.

 

Section 2:

A membership fee of twenty dollars must be paid by October 31 of the Fall Semester to be considered for active membership.

 

Section 3:

All active members are responsible for participating in a minimum of 10 community service hours per semester and 20 hours in an academic year. All members should attend at least five General Assembly meetings a year; Executive Board members should attend at least 2/3 of the total meetings in an academic year.

 

Section 4:

A minimal G.P.A. requirement of 2.0 for general members and 2.8 for the Executive Board members is not met then there will be a probation period of one semester where the student must meet the requirement.

 

Section 4:

If the requirements from above are not completed and satisfied by any active member, a proposal of termination of their membership may take place.

 

Article II: Selection of Officers

Section 1:

To be eligible to run for office you need a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.8 or above and have completed above the required responsibilities of an active member. All members who are running for office must complete a general application indicating which position they would like to serve in. All elections will be held in the spring, consisting of votes by paper which will be counted by the Advisors.

 

Section 2:

Any officer that does not fulfill his/her responsibilities as a member, including attending the required number of meetings or speaking or acting in a way that does not positively represent the A.A.S.A. or the University will be promptly removed from his/her position.

 

Article III: Selection of Advisor

 

Section 1:

The current Executive Board will decide on who they feel could fulfill the responsibilities the advisor would be responsible for. From all the considerations made, the information will be put considered and a decision will be reached.

 

Section 2:

An advisor needs to provide guidance and advice for the organization and all endeavors it may undertake. An advisor will be removed if he/she cannot complete this general task.

 

Article IV: Committees

 

Section 1:

There shall be four committees, the Executive Board which will consist of all governing powers and those sub-committees below it. These governing powers consist of the President, three Vice-Presidents, the Secretary, the Treasurer, the Historian, and the Parliamentarian. Under these powers are Budget and Finance Committee, the Publicity Committee, and the Historian Committee.

Section 2:

The A.A.S.A. forms the Executive Board, Constitution and By-Laws, and conduct, according to Robert’s Rules of Order.

 

Article V: Amendments

 

Section 1: These By-Laws may be amended by a 2/3 amendment system.

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