Regents College Constitution
REGENTS COLLEGE CONSTITUTION
Ratified September 1996
Amended April 1997; April 2000; October 2001; October 2002; March 2003;
February 2004; April 2006, September 2008
Article I. Name
The name of this college is The Regents College.
Article II. Purpose
The purposes of The Regents College are to provide an organizational structure and system of governance, to develop appropriate activities and services for college members, and to work with all parties involved to improve the quality of life for those involved with the college.
Article III. Membership
Membership in the college is assigned by the Vice-President for Student Affairs. Categories of membership are defined as follows:
A. Active Member: any currently enrolled student assigned to the college who has participated in at least one college activity during the academic year.
B. Inactive member: any currently enrolled student assigned to the college who has yet to meet the criterion for active membership.
C. Alumni Member: any person who was a resident of Regents Hall or member of Regents College at the time of his/her graduation from the university.
D. Associate Member: Any person who does not meet other criteria but has participated actively in college life; membership will be conferred by the College Head with the approval of the Executive Board and the Vice-President of Student Affairs.
E. Honorary Member: any person who has contributed significantly to the welfare of the college and is therefore recommended by a member or the College Head and approved by the College Council.
Article IV. Organization
Responsibility for fulfillment of college purposes, policies, and procedures will be vested in the Regents College Council (hereafter RCC) and its Executive Board. To assist these students, the university will employ a professional staff including Resident Advisors, a Residence Director, and a College Head.
A. The Executive Board consists of the following officers of the college, each of whom must be an active member and maintain a 2.0 GPA: President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, Historian, two (2) Student Government Association (SGA) Senators, Residential College Association (RCA) Representative, Athletic Director(s), Assistant to the College Head, Resident Advisor Representative, Service Chair, Social Chair, Commuter Representative, and International Student Representative. Officers are elected (with the exception of the Athletic Director(s) and Assistant to the College Head, who are compensated by the Murray State Housing Department and appointed by the College Head, and the Resident Advisor Representative, who is appointed by the Residence Director) in the spring semester to take office and serve during the following academic year. Vacancies will be filled at the beginning of the fall semester or within two weeks after they occur, as provided in Article IV.E.
B. Full voting membership in the RCC will be held by college officers and the following additional representatives, who must be active members and maintain at least a 2.0 GPA: one elected representative from each of the eight residential floors in Regents Hall (each floor will also elect a non-voting Alternate Floor Representative), up to eight commuter representatives elected from among active members not living in the residence hall, and seven Resident Advisors not serving on the Executive Board. Floor Representatives shall be elected in the fall semester by a majority vote of residents present at the first held floor meeting. The candidate receiving the second most votes shall serve as Alternate Floor Representative. Prior to the election nominations, Article V, Section L. of this constitution should be read aloud. The term of office for both the Floor Representative and the Alternate Floor Representative shall be one academic year. Should the Floor Representative vacate his or her office, the Alternate Floor Representative shall immediately assume the position without need for a special election. Should the Alternate Floor Representative position become vacant, a special election shall be called at the next floor meeting to fill the position. If both the floor representative and the Alternate Floor Representative position become vacant, the president shall recognize one volunteer from the unrepresented floor to serve until a special election may be held at the next floor meeting.
C. Associate Membership in the RCC is open to all members of the college. Any member may attend meetings and be heard by the Council as provided in Article X.
D. Ex Officio Membership in the RCC will be held by the College Head by virtue of his/her role as advisor to the RCC.
E. If the office of President should be vacated for any reason, the Vice-President of the RCC will immediately become the President, with all the powers and authorities of that office. If any other office becomes open during the academic year, a special RCC election shall be held within two weeks, with the new officer selected from among those RCC members regularly attending meetings. Should the Vice-Presidency become vacant, the Secretary/Treasurer will assume those duties until the special election is held.
F. Any RCC member except the President may also serve as an RCA or SGA representative as long as the duties of those offices do not conflict. Should a one-time conflict occur, the officer will abstain from voting on the issue in one of the legislative bodies; should ongoing conflicts occur, the person must resign one of the offices so as to eliminate the source(s) of conflict.
Article V. Duties
The duties of the officers and other RCC members include faithful effort to perform ones office(s) to the best of one’s ability, regular attendance at meetings, and the following specific responsibilities:
A. The President will convene and preside over meetings of the Executive Board and the RCC; appoint standing and special committees and their chairs; endorse college fund expenditures which require approval; break ties in any college voting procedure; determine (with the Vice-President) whether absences from Council meetings are excused; facilitate evaluations; and take necessary action (with the input of other Executive Board members) when time constraints or other circumstances prevent the full RCC from ruling on the issue.
B. The Vice-President will act as college leader during the temporary absence of the President; serve as chairperson of college committee(s) as designated by the President; succeed to the office of President should it become vacant for any reason; maintain records of members’ eligibility to hold office, including attendance records; determine (with the President) whether absences from Council meetings are excused; vote on issues brought before the RCC; serve as parliamentarian for the council; facilitate recognition; and supervise the impeachment process.
C. The Secretary will keep minutes and records of Executive Board and RCC meetings and decisions; correspond with members and other parties as needed; notify members about meetings; notify RCC members when they have accumulated two unexcused absences; vote on issues brought before the RCC; and act in the absence of the Vice-President until a replacement can be elected.
D. The Treasurer will maintain accurate records of funds and expenditures for which the Executive Board and RCC are responsible, as deemed necessary by the College Head; arrange and endorse any authorized expenditures, as needed; vote on issues brought before the RCC.
E. The Service Chair will be responsible for Recycling in Regents; organize Regents’ team for Relay for Life (annual philanthropy); help advertise for Regents and/or campus-wide service activities; manage fundraising activities; spearhead all donations and/or drives and/or community activities for the year; keep RCC and Regents residents informed of community service activities throughout Murray; organize clean-up committees after major Regents programs and events; coordinate at least one service program each semester.
F. The Social Chair is the designated Chairman for Campus-wide activities (Homecoming events, Hanging of the Greens, All Campus Sing, etc.) and will coordinate between RA programs, RCC programs and Campus-wide programs to avoid conflict; act as a “party-planner”, organizing a variety of social activities (with the help of a committee) performing various planning activities (ordering food, providing necessary supplies, decorating, etc.); arrange set-up and clean-up committees; assist with Regents College activities and/or programs.
G. The Commuter Representative will serve as a liaison between Regents RCC and Regents Commuter students; update commuters on Regent’s college events and/or programs on a weekly basis; communicate any concerns and/or issues of non-residents; aid in Regents College activities and/or programs.
H. The International Student Representative will serve as a liaison between Regents RCC and International Students; update International students on Regent’s college events and/or programs on a weekly basis; communicate any concerns and/or issues of international students; act as Co-Chairperson for Regent’s Annual International Dinner; elected each semester (Fall/Spring).
I. The Residential College Association Representative will keep the RCC and other college members informed about the policies and activities of the RCA; represent the interests of the college before the RCA; vote in RCC and RCA meetings as he/she believes best reflects the opinions and interests of college members; and serve as needed on RCC committees.
J. The SGA Senators will represent and act for the college as members of SGA; keep the RCC and other college members informed about the policies and activities of the SGA; vote in RCC and SGA meetings as they believe best reflects the opinions and interests of college members; and serve as needed on RCC committees.
K. The Historian will acquire and preserve historical records and materials for the college; assist with the college newsletter and other publicity; help facilitate college programming; vote on issues brought before the RCC; and serve as needed on RCC committees.
L. The Floor and Commuter Representatives will vote on issues brought before the RCC and, with the Alternate Floor Representatives, communicate to the executive board and college staff the views and concerns of college members; promote college programs and policies; encourage members’ participation in college activities; and serve as needed on RCC committees. In addition, Floor Representatives and Alternate Floor Representatives must assist in a minimum of two official RCC events/programs (as sanctioned by the RCC president) per semester. Both are also required to post their contact information beside the elevators on their respective floors and make themselves available for student input. The Floor Representatives are responsible for voting, in consultation with the Alternate Floor Representatives, on behalf of their entire floor. When a Floor Representative and an Alternate Floor Representative from the same floor are in strong disagreement regarding any issue, the Floor Representative should abstain from voting. If the Floor Representative is unable to attend the meeting, the Alternate Floor Representative shall vote instead. Either a Floor Representative or an Alternate Floor Representative from each floor should attend every meeting. Attendance policies and impeachment procedures, as defined in Article VII, are applicable to these offices.
M. The Athletic Director(s) will coordinate all aspects of college participation in intercollegiate sports and recreation activities within the university; keep RCC and other college members informed of the dates and times of all activities; strive to generate enthusiasm for and participation in collegiate and intercollegiate athletic activities; facilitate RCC team building; and vote on issues brought before the RCC.
N. The Resident Advisor Representative will represent the Resident Advisor staff promote understanding between the college’s residents and housing staff; vote on issues brought before the RCC; and serve as needed on RCC committees.
O. The Assistant to the College Head must perform 12 service hours per week. Duties include: coordinate and promote all College programming; maintain first- and second-floor bulletin boards; meet regularly with College Head, Housing staff and the RCC Executive Board; oversee College facility and equipment usage and scheduling; perform other duties assigned by the College Head.
Article VI: Elections
A. Elections for offices for the following academic year will be held in late spring.
Nominations will be submitted to the Secretary, who will verify the eligibility of those nominated and post names in the hall. If only one eligible candidate is nominated for any position, that candidate shall be considered elected unless defeated by another candidate receiving more votes through write-ins. If there are no candidates for a position in spring or if the only candidate withdraws from the election or office in spring or summer, the election for that office will be carried over to the fall semester.
B. Candidates for office may use reasonable means to campaign for the offices for which they are nominated, and may campaign from the date of nomination through election day, but no campaigning may take place within ten feet of the ballot box.
C. Balloting will normally take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on election days.
D. The normal term of office will be one academic year, and any officer may stand for reelection.
E. Offices vacated during the academic year will be filled according to Article IV.E.
Article VII: Impeachment and Removal from Office
A. Evidence raising questions about any RCC member’s eligibility or fitness to serve should be presented to the Vice-President by any person who becomes aware of them. The Vice- President will notify the Residence Director and College Head, who will determine whether the issue should be considered by the RCC only or referred directly to other university agencies. The Vice-President, Residence Director, and/or College Head, depending on the nature of the evidence, will offer the person whose performance is in question the opportunity to comment on the evidence presented. If the evidence warrants dismissal and is undisputed, the Vice- President will inform the Executive Board, which will declare the position vacant and declare a special election to fill it according to Article IV.E. If the facts are not clear or are disputed, both the member whose eligibility has been questioned and the person(s) who raised the issue will be invited to present their positions before a regular or special meeting of the RCC. The RCC may then remove the person in question from office if two-thirds of the members so vote.
B. Members should inform the Secretary of upcoming absences and the reasons for them one week before a meeting if possible, and no later than one week after the meeting. The Secretary will report excuses to the President and Vice-President, who will then rule on the acceptability of the excuse(s). The Secretary will send a letter of warning to any member who accumulates two unexcused absences. Any member who misses three or more meetings during the semester without valid excuse will be dismissed from the RCC and the vacancy filled according to Article IV.E.
Article VIII: Funding
Acting within the provisions of university policy, the RCC has the discretion to vote on expenditure of funds allocated to it from student fees, raise additional funds in appropriate ways, and petition for additional funds from the college budget administered by the College Head. Early in the fall semester the Treasurer will present a budget indicating how much money is committed for various purposes and what discretionary funds are available.
Article IX: Committees
Standing and ad hoc committees will be established and filled by the RCC as necessary. Membership will normally be open to both full and associate members of the RCC. Committee chairpersons will generally be college officers, but exceptions to this policy may be made at the discretion of the President and Executive Board.
Article X: Meetings
Regular meetings of the Executive Board and the RCC will be held weekly, beginning as soon as is practical each semester. The President will determine the schedule of regular meetings in consultation with other officers and the College Head. The President may call special meetings with at least 24 hours notice. A special meeting will be called if any five Executive Board members or any ten full RCC members petition to have one. The Residence Director, College Head, and Resident Advisors will be invited to all meetings of the Executive Board and RCC. All meetings are open to members of the college, with the exception that Executive Board meetings may be closed to discuss personnel matters.
Article XI: Order of Business
The President will distribute or post an agenda prior to each meeting of the Executive Board or RCC, and meetings will follow that agenda unless the members vote to add to or revise the order. Unless meetings are called for specific, limited purposes, or the members vote to suspend or revise the order, the general order of business should be as follows: Call to order; roll call; minutes of previous meeting read, corrected (if necessary), and approved; reports from officers; reports from committees; special reports; old business; new business; announcements; and adjournment.
A. Any action requiring a vote of members must be submitted to the President at least 48 hours prior to the meeting so that it can be included on the agenda.
B. Discussion on any issue will be limited to 15 minutes (timed by the Vice-President), unless by majority vote the members agree to continue discussion for a specified, limited time.
C. Voting will be by show of hands unless a written, secret ballot is requested.
D. The President will recognize any associate RCC members or guests who wish to address the meeting for as long as five minutes during consideration of new business. Members may vote to extend additional time to such speakers, but the provision regarding notice of issues to be voted upon should not be suspended.
Article XII. Quorum
Members may discuss but not vote on any matter until at least half of the eligible members are present. The Vice-President shall assess whether a quorum is present before any vote is taken.
Article XIII. Parliamentary Authority
Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised will be the final reference authority on any matter of parliamentary procedure. The Vice-President will normally serve as the parliamentarian.
Article XIV. Constitutional Interpretation
Differences of opinion about the meaning of provisions in this constitution which cannot be resolved by the Executive Board or RCC, or interpretations which are questioned by at least five full or ten associate members of the RCC, may be appealed to, in the order indicated, the College Head, the Council of Residential College Heads, and the Vice-President for Student Affairs.
Article XV. Amendments
Proposed amendments to this constitution must be presented to the Executive Board accompanied by a petition with at least 15 signatures of active college members and must specify a date upon which the change(s) would become effective if ratified. The Executive Board and the College Head will determine whether the proposed amendment is in accord with university policy, or may be altered to be so with minor changes, subject to the agreement of those recommending the amendment. If the proposed amendment is acceptable to these parties, the Executive Board will notify college members of the proposed amendment and arrange for a vote no more than 14 days or fewer than 10 days after the notification. If two- thirds of those voting approve, the amendment will be added to the constitution and become effective on the date specified.
Article XVI. Ratification
This constitution will be considered ratified if approved by two-thirds of those members voting on the issue in the college election held on Sept. 17, 1996.