Student Engagement

Additional Constitution Resources

There are many ways to organize a club's constitution. Here are some ideas you can use to determine officer roles and responsibilities, election and selection processes, and impeachment/reinstatement procedures. Potential positions, policies, and procedures from this page are not required nor are they limited to the information included here. Use the information below to generate ideas for how you want your organization to function.

Officer Roles and Responsibilities

Election and Selection Procedures

Impeachment and Removal

 


Officer Roles and Responsibilities

Student organizations are required to outline the roles and responsibilities of each officer position in their constitution. Below is a list of possible positions and responsibilities to be included in an organization’s constitution. Please note: every organization is required to have a President (or equivalent) and a Treasurer (or equivalent). Additionally, organizations are required to identify an officer responsible for risk management.

 

President

  • Presides over meetings of the organization
  • Calls special meetings of the organization
  • Facilitates executive board meetings
  • Oversees the activities of officers and general members
  • Prepares and files any required reports
  • Maintains membership records in the student organization database
  • Maintains contact with the organization’s Advisor
  • Maintains contact with affiliated University department or community partner
  • Maintains contact with (inter)national organization
  • Represents the organization to the University

 

Treasurer

  • Works with Advisor to approve each expenditure before payment
  • Keeps all financial records of the organization
  • Prepares an annual budget
  • Holds the purchasing card (p-card) for the organization
  • Prepares all funding requests
  • Advises members on financial matters
  • Collects member dues
  • Prepares purchase orders or supply requests
  • Coordinates fundraising drive
  • Maintains an inventory of all organization equipment and property

 

Vice President

  • Assumes the duties of the President in their absence
  • Directs constitutional updating and revisions
  • Facilitates election of officers
  • Recruits new members to the organization
  • Serves as an ex-officio member of standing committees
  • Oversees the impeachment and removal process for members, officers, and advisor
  • Serve as the Risk Management Officer to (a) help minimize potential risks for club activities, (b) recommend risk management policies or procedures, (c) to submit documentation to ISU’s Risk Management Office and (d) to ensure that proper waivers and background checks are on file with Risk Management for events

 

Secretary

  • Obtains appropriate facilities for organization activities
  • Keeps a record of all members of the organization
  • Prepares organization’s calendar of events
  • Keeps and distributes minutes of each meeting of the organization
  • Maintains attendance at all meetings
  • Maintains organization’s records, storage, and office
  • Prepares and files any required reports
  • Handles all official correspondence of the organization
  • Collects organization’s mail
  • Keeps members of the organization informed about activities, university events, and important dates

 

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Officer

  • Provide information, resources, and events to members of the organization that will enhance awareness of equity, diversity, and inclusion
  • Propose diverse topics to be included in membership meetings
  • Ensure that policies and practices of the organization are inclusive and accessible
  • Attending college Diversity Committee meetings as scheduled (if the college has a diversity committee)
  • Create and oversee events that are relevant to diversity and inclusion
  • Assist other executive positions in creating and distributing relevant promotional materials.

 

Events Director

  • Preside over the planning and implementation of the organization’s public events
  • Work with the treasurer to remain within budget for all events
  • Establish and maintain relationships with vendors and campus partners
  • Supervise event staff
  • Reserve rooms/spaces for the organization’s events
  • Order food and supplies for events
  • Complete event authorization process and ensure that all necessary paperwork is completed and submitted to the university

 

Community Service Director

  • Plan and direct community outreach events
  • Coordinate tabling events on campus
  • Seek out volunteer opportunities for members
  • Track members’ volunteer hours
  • Build and maintain relationships with community partners
  • Identify opportunities to serve the community during organization programs (ex: collect donations at events)

 

Marketing & Communications Director

  • Employ media outlets to inform the campus community about the organization’s activities
  • Create a membership newsletter to keep members informed and involved with the organization
  • Design physical and virtual graphics to market the organization
  • Create and distribute all advertisements and designs
  • Take photos and videos at the organization’s events

 


Election and Selection Procedures

Student organizations are required to detail the election and/or selection procedures. Below is a list of things to consider and examples of procedures to be included in an organization’s constitution. 

 

Things to Consider

  • Election/selection should be scheduled at a time of year that will allow for an adequate transition period for the new officers (ex: elections held in March will allow new officers to transition during the month of April)
  • Notification about election/selection and information about procedures should be announced to members far in advance (4-6 weeks is recommended)
  • Ensure the election/selection is well publicized and that members are informed about each position’s responsibilities
  • Establish an impartial election/selection committee or chairperson to oversee the election/selection process (ex: the outgoing President)
  • Clarify who is eligible to run for an officer position

 

Election Procedures

  • Elections should begin with a nomination period
    • Nominations can occur during a pre-determined meeting, or during an extended period of time leading up to elections
    • Nominations can be made verbally during a meeting, or members can use virtual/paper forms to nominate candidates anonymously
    • Members can nominate themselves along with other members
    • Procedures should specify whether a nominee needs to accept/reject their nomination
  • At the election meeting:
    • Only active voting members should be allowed into the meeting
    • If the nomination period ended prior to the election meeting, pre-made ballots should be prepared with the names of each candidate under each position
      • Ballots can be virtual (google form, Qualtrics, etc.) or on paper
      • It is recommended that organizations have blank paper ballots ready in the case of a run-off election
    • Candidates should be given a chance to speak with voting members before elections occur
      • Candidate speeches can occur during the voting meeting or prior to the meeting
      • Candidates should be given a set amount of time to speak (2-6 minutes is recommended)
    • Procedures should specify whether candidates are allowed to vote, and whether candidates are allowed to stay in the room while voting occurs
  • Voting procedures:
    • Procedures should clarify the amount of votes a candidate needs to win an election
      • Majority of votes cast, 2/3 of votes cast, etc.
    • Procedures should clarify what happens in the case of a tie, or in the case that no candidate achieves the number of votes necessary to win
      • An immediate run-off election between the two highest voted candidates is recommended

 

Selection Procedures

  • Selection should begin with a nomination or application period
    • If an organization chooses to use a nomination process, nominations can occur during a pre-determined meeting, or during an extended period of time leading up to selection
      • Nominations can be made verbally during a meeting, or members can use virtual/paper forms to nominate candidates anonymously
      • Members can nominate themselves along with other members
      • Procedures should specify whether a nominee needs to accept/reject their nomination
    • If an organization chooses to use an application process, there should be a lengthy and well-advertised application period
      • Consider who is responsible for creating the application and publishing it to members
  • Procedures should specify who is responsible for reviewing applications and selecting officers
    • Consider whether the Advisor should have a role in reviewing applicants
    • Consider whether all outgoing officers help with selection, or just a couple specific officers

 


Impeachment and Removal

Student organizations are required to detail the impeachment and removal procedures. Below are elements for your organization to consider, review and or adapt to be included in an organization’s constitution. 

 

Grounds for Removal

  • Constitutions should specify the grounds for removing an officer or member
    • Ex: failure to uphold the responsibilities of their position, use of derogatory language, bullying, harassment, theft, repeated disruptions during meetings, or any other action deemed unacceptable by the current Student Disciplinary Regulations (Code of Conduct)

 

Procedure for Impeachment

  • Procedures should outline how the removal process is initiated
    • Impeachment may be initiated through:
      • a formal complaint made to the executive board by any member of the organization
      • a petition that is signed by a specified number of members (2/3, majority, etc.)
      • a vote by a specified number of officers (2/3, unanimous, majority, etc.)
  • Impeachment hearing
    • Procedures should clarify who is able to participate in the impeachment hearing
      • All members present, dues paying members, etc.
    • Organizations should announce the charge brought against an individual to general membership and provide evidence to support the claim
      • Specify when this will occur (at least one week prior to the hearing is recommended)
    • Clarify whether the individual in question is allowed to argue a defense in front of voting members
      • Specify the amount of time the member is able to speak
    • Consider how the vote should be conducted
      • Specify whether the member in question is allowed to vote or be present in the room
      • Specify whether voting members are allowed time for deliberation, and whether the member in question can participate
      • Consider whether the vote is conducted by secret ballot (virtual or paper form), show of hands, or roll call
      • Specify the number of votes needed to impeach/remove the member in question
        • Majority of votes cast, 2/3 of votes cast, etc.

 

Appeal of Impeachment

  • Procedures should clarify whether there is a set time period in which an appeal can be made (ex: within one week of the vote)
  • Specify who oversees the appeal process (Advisor, President, officers, etc.)
  • Consider how the appeal can be made
    • The member in question can submit a written request for appeal with reasons for the appeal to the individual(s) responsible for overseeing the appeal process
  • Determine how the decision is made and within what time frame the decision must be made
    • Ex: the officers and Advisor of the organization must decide to approve or deny the appeal within 10 days of receiving the appeal
  • No secondary appeals are permitted (a member cannot attempt to appeal an appeal)
  • In the case of membership removal, constitutions should specify when/if membership can be reinstated
    • Ex: membership may be reinstated 366 days after removal
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