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Student Government Association

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Constitution of the Viterbo University Student Government Association

Revised 2011

Article I: Name
Article II: Preamble
Article III: The Purposes of the Viterbo University SGA
Article IV: SGA Membership
Article V: Duties of the SGA Membership
Article VI: Duties of the Executive Officers
Article VII: SGA Executive Committee<
Article VIII: Business Manager
Article IX: SGA Committees
Article X: Meeting Operations
Article XI: Elections
Article XII: Initial Organizational Meeting
Article XIII: Resignation, Recall, and Vacancy Filling Policy
Article XIV: Referenda, Amendments and Ratification

Article I: Name

The name of this organization shall be the Viterbo University Student Government Association (SGA).

Article II: Preamble

This Constitution set forth with the belief that active and thoughtful participation in every aspect of campus life that concerns students is beneficially attainable, establishes a student government that will pursue the ideals of all without denying the ideals of one, that will be responsive without being repressive or restrictive, and that will insure that we, the students of Viterbo University, are fairly recognized and represented.

Article III: The Purpose of the Viterbo University Student Government Association

  1. To represent Viterbo University student body on campus and in the surrounding community.
  2. To address issues and recommend policies pertaining to students and student life.
  3. To manage and allocate funds collected through the student activity fees.
  4. To coordinate and conduct SGA elections.
  5. To assist in updating and publishing the Viterbo University Student Handbook and Planner.
  6. To choose awards or scholarships as necessary.

Article IV: SGA Membership

The members of the Student Government Association include the following Executive Officers, Student Representatives and Advisor:

  1. Executive Officers elected by the student body in the spring semester for the following academic year.
  2. President.
  3. Student Representative elected by the student body in the spring semester for the following academic year.
    1. Eight At-Large Student Representatives elected by the entire student body.
    2. Two sophomore Student Representatives elected from the sophomore class.
    3. Two junior Student Representatives elected from the junior class.
    4. Two Senior Student Representatives elected from the senior class.
    5. One Commuting Student Representative elected from the commuter students.
    6. One Non-traditional Student Representative (twenty-five years of age or older) elected from the non-traditional students.
  4. Student Representative elected by the student body in the fall semester for the current academic year.
    1. Three Freshmen Student Representatives elected by the freshmen class.
  5. Executive officers elected from the newly-elected Student Representative by the newly elected Student Representatives in the spring semester for the following academic year.
    1. Vice-President.
    2. Secretary.
  6. Executive Officers and Student Representatives appointed by the SGA President during the spring semester for the following academic year or as vacancies open. Each position requires approval from at least two-thirds of the Student Representatives.
    1. Parliamentarian.
    2. Public Relations Officer.
    3. Vacancies of the representatives.
  7. Business Manager, non-voting member. The Business Manager is appointed by the Administrative Advisor, the previous year’s Business Manager and two other Student Representatives.
  8. One Administrative Advisor, non-voting member. This position is typically held by the chief student development officer.

Article V: Duties of the SGA Membership

  1. To attend all SGA meetings.
  2. To serve on at least one SGA committee.
  3. To maintain SGA office hours as requested by the Executive committee; typically, one hour per week.
  4. To uphold the SGA Constitution and By-Laws.
  5. To act in accordance with University policy.
  6. To maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0.

Article VI: Duties of the Executive Officers

  1. The Executive Officers of the SGA shall be President, Vice President, Secretary, Parliamentarian, and Public Relations Officer.
  2. The President shall be elected with the greatest number of votes from the student body.
  3. The Vice President and Secretary shall be elected from among the SGA Student Representatives at the initial organizational meeting.
  4. The Parliamentarian and Public Relations Officer shall be appointed by the President at the first meeting of the newly-elected SGA Student Representatives. The nominee(s) shall be approved with a two-thirds vote of the SGA membership.
  5. Duties
    1. President
      1. The President holds a vote at Executive Committee meetings; none at SGA meetings.
      2. Shall call all meetings of the SGA.
      3. Shall call and preside at all SGA Executive Committee meetings.
      4. Shall preside over all SGA meetings in absence of the Vice President.
      5. Shall serve as the major liaison with other college and university student governments.
      6. Shall work with student groups, University offices and outside agencies for the betterment of the University community.
      7. Shall be responsible for announcing the official SGA viewpoint and position to the SGA members, members of the campus and surrounding community, and local broadcast and print media.
      8. Shall keep detailed records of his/her activities for use by future officers and committees.
      9. President shall have the authority to approve or veto any item of business voted upon and passed by SGA membership.
      10. Appoint with a two-thirds SGA approval the Parliamentarian, the Public Relations Officer and Student Representatives when a seat is vacant.
      11. If the President runs for the position of Student Representative as well as for the position of President and is elected to both, the President must resign from the position of Student Representative to allow another student to hold the representative’s position.
      12. Shall not be an officer of another campus club.
      13. Shall maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.5.
    2. Vice President
      1. The Vice President holds a vote at Executive Committee meetings; none at SGA meetings.
      2. Shall assist the President.
      3. Shall preside over all SGA meetings.
      4. Shall announce the names of the newly-elected Student Representatives to pertinent University student groups, officials and committees.
      5. Shall cast the deciding vote in the event of a tie vote at an SGA meeting.
      6. Shall not be an officer of another campus club.
      7. Shall maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.25.
    3. Secretary
      1. The Secretary holds a vote at both Executive meetings and SGA meetings.
      2. Shall take minutes of each SGA meeting, type them, and distribute them prior to the next SGA meeting. Minutes are distributed to:
        1. President of the University
        2. Academic Vice President
        3. All SGA members
        4. Faculty Assembly President
        5. Staff Assembly President
        6. SGA Business Manager
        7. Vice President for Student Development
        8. Lumen Editor
      3. Shall maintain an inventory of office supplies.
      4. Shall post SGA Meeting Minutes and Agendas.
      5. Shall keep track of member attendance.
      6. Shall file correspondence and keep office files in order.
      7. Shall not be an officer of another campus club.
      8. Shall maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.25.
    4. Parliamentarian
      1. The Parliamentarian holds a vote at both Executive meeting and SGA meetings.
      2. Will have a working knowledge of Parliamentary Procedure.
      3. Shall advise SGA members on SGA By-Laws, Roberts Rules of Order and/or Parliamentary Procedure as necessary.
      4. Shall be the chairperson of the Rules committee.
      5. Shall maintain an updated version of the Robert’s Rules of Parliamentary Procedure at all SGA meetings.
      6. Shall not be an officer of another club.
      7. Shall maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.25.
    5. Public Relations Officer
      1. The public Relations Officer holds a vote at both Executive meeting and SGA Meetings.
      2. Shall be the chairperson of the Student Life Committee.
      3. Shall maintain the SGA website.
      4. Shall be responsible for publicity campaigns as needed.
      5. Shall be responsible for drafting communications to the local broadcast and print media on behalf of SGA.
      6. Shall be responsible for assisting the President in announcing the official viewpoint and position the SGA to the local broadcast and print media, and members of the campus and surrounding community.
      7. Shall not be an officer of another campus club.
      8. Shall maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.25.

    Article VII: SGA Executive Committee

    1. Membership of the SGA Executive Committee.
      1. The six(6) SGA officers - President, Vice President, Business Manager, Secretary, Parliamentarian, and Public Relations Officer.
      2. SGA Administrative Advisor, Non-Voting Member.
    2. Functions of the SGA Executive Committee.
      1. To prepare the agenda for SGA meetings.
      2. To encourage members and committees to fulfill their duties.
      3. To make purchases and agreements as necessary when the SGA is not in session, with the understanding that expenditures must be approved by a majority vote at the next SGA meeting.

    Article VIII: Business Manager

    1. The Business Manager is a paid position appointed by SGA through an application and interview process. [The interviewing committee shall consist of the Administrative Advisor, the current Business Manager (if not reapplying), and two SGA members.] The Business Manager will be appointed by April 1 for the following year.
    2. The Business Manager holds a vote at Executive Committee meetings; none at SGA meetings.
    3. The Business Manger shall be the chairperson of the Club Status and Finance Committee.
    4. If the Business Manager is a Student Representative, he/she must resign the position of Student Representative.
    5. E. Duties
      1. Responsible for the implementation of financial decisions made by SGA.
      2. Make reports of all account activity at each SGA meeting.
      3. Provide/present a budget for SGA by April 15th for the following academic year.
      4. To attend all SGA meetings.
      5. To attend all Executive Committee meetings.

    Article IX: SGA Committees

    1. Committee Memberships shall be determined by the beginning of the academic year.
    2. The Vice President shall appoint SGA Committee members based on Student Representative and Executive Officer preferences.
    3. The Vice President will ensure that the majority of all committee’s membership is comprised of SGA members. Committees may include students who are not SGA members.
    4. The President and Secretary will be notified of all committee meetings.
    5. The Vice President will strive to ensure that committees include representation of both lower and upper division students.
    6. The following are Standing SGA Committees.
      1. Finance Committee.
        1. The Finance Committee shall include at least five (5) members- the Business Manager, the SGA Administrative Advisor and at least three (3) other SGA members.
        2. The Business Manager shall serve as the chair.
        3. The SGA Administrative Advisor will sit on the committee as a non-voting member.
        4. Functions
          1. To assist the Business Manager.
          2. To review all funding requests and to make recommendations to SGA pertaining to said requests.
          3. To present funding requests to the SGA meeting with recommendations.
          .
        5. Student Life Committee
          1. The Student Life Committee shall include at least three (3) SGA members.
          2. The Public Relations Officer shall serve as the chairperson.
          3. Functions
            1. To assist the Public Relations Officer with publicity campaigns.
            2. To assist the Executive Committee with the Club Fair and other activities.
            3. To coordinate at least one event for Alcohol Awareness week each spring.
        6. Awards Committee
          1. The Awards Committee shall include at least three (3) members.
          2. The chairperson is appointed by the Vice President.
          3. Functions – The Awards Committee will nominate candidates for Who’s Who, STAR, SGA and other awards.
        7. Campus Appearance Committee
          1. The Campus Appearance Committee shall include at least three (3) members.
          2. The chairperson is appointed by the Vice President.
          3. The chairperson shall serve as liaison between SGA and the Physical Plant staff.
          4. Functions – To address issues of interest and concern related to campus appearance, security, facilities and grounds.
        8. Rules Committee
          1. The Rules Committee shall include at least three (3) members.
          2. The chairperson of the Rules Committee is the Parliamentarian.
          3. Functions
            1. To distribute the SGA Constitution and By-Laws in appropriate binders.
            2. To assist in interpreting the SGA Constitution and By-Laws

        Article X: Meeting Operations

        1. SGA meetings shall be held at least twice a month from September through mid-May.
        2. No meeting of SGA shall be held without the presence of a quorum.A quorum shall consist of more than fifty percent (50%) of the entire and current SGA membership.
        3. All SGA meetings shall be conducted according to Robert’s Rules of Order, newly revised, except when in conflict with the constitution or its bylaws.
        4. The Vice President shall preside over all meetings.
        5. If the Vice President is not present, the President shall preside over meetings until the Vice President returns.The order of succession for presiding at meetings is Vice President, President, Parliamentarian, Public Relations Officer, and Secretary.
        6. In the event that no members of the Executive Committee are present, the meeting is suspended until the President calls the next meeting.
        7. Special meetings may be called at any time by the Vice President. An attempt to contact all SGA members by electronic mail or telephone must be made to validate the meeting.
        8. An agenda shall be set at least three (3) days before each meeting. Meetings shall include the following:
          1. Call to order.
          2. Prayer.
          3. Approval of Minutes of Previous Meeting.
          4. Approval of Agenda of Current Meeting.
          5. Presenters.
          6. President’s Report.
          7. Executives’ Reports.
          8. Advisor’s Reports.
          9. Committees Reports.
          10. Old Business.
          11. New Business.
          12. Student Concerns.
          13. Announcements.
          14. Adjournment.
        9. When voting on a motion, the following procedures are to be used:
          1. The Vice President shall restate the motion.
          2. The Vice President may call a general consent vote, a voice vote or a roll call vote.
          3. In the event of a roll call vote, voting members will indicate their vote with one of the following responses:
            1. “Yes” for a vote in the affirmative.
            2. “No” for a dissenting vote.
            3. “Abstain” when a member is present, but is not voting. Abstentions are not counted as part of the total vote.
              1. No member may abstain when a vote requires a two-thirds majority.
          4. Upon announcing the results of the vote, the Vice President requests the President’s approval or veto.
          5. If the president approves the motion passes.If the president vetoes, the motion fails.A two-thirds majority vote by the SGA may override the president’s veto.

        Article XI: Election Policy

        1. Any student meeting the academic eligibility requirements may place his or her name in nomination for SGA Student Representative or for President.
        2. Nominees will submit to the Elections Commission a completed nomination form.
        3. Students completing the nomination form will attend an informational meeting held by the Election Commission prior to campaigning.
          1. The meeting shall include at least one presentation by a current SGA member explaining SGA roles and responsibilities.
        4. D.Candidates must follow the campaign guidelines outlined by the Elections Commission.
        5. All SGA members will be elected for a term of one academic year.
        6. Spring SGA elections must be completed by April 15th.
        7. Regarding fall elections, newly-elected members must be seated by the third meeting of the fall semester.
        8. The President shall appoint an Elections Commission comprised of at least five (5) student members who are not SGA members and one (1) advisor.

        Article XII: Initial Organizational Meeting

        The newly-elected SGA will convene under the leadership of the incoming SGA President. The SGA will elect a Vice President, Secretary, and approve Parliamentarian and Public Relations officer appointments at the initial organizational meeting. The initial organizational meeting is to be held within one month of the completion of spring elections.

        Article XIII: Resignation, Recall and Vacancy Filling Policy

        1. Resignation
          1. SGA Members
            1. SGA members resigning a position shall submit a resignation in writing to the SGA President.
            2. The SGA President shall notify SGA members of the resignation.
            3. An SGA member who resigns his or her position may be eligible to hold an SGA position in the future.
          2. SGA Committees
            1. Student resigning from a SGA Committee shall submit a letter of resignation to the Chairperson of the Committee and the SGA Vice President.
            2. The SGA Vice President will notify SGA members of the resignation.
        2. Recall from Office
          1. Recall From Office For Not Meeting Attendance Requirements.
            1. An SGA member may be removed from his or her position if he or she misses four (4) meetings in one academic year.
            2. The President will inform any member in writing if they are within one (1) absence of removal.
            3. After three (3) absences of any member, the President shall request SGA approval for removal from the position if said member misses a fourth meeting.
            4. After a member misses four (4) meetings, the President shall inform said member that he or she no longer holds an SGA position.
            5. f a member is recalled from position, said member cannot hold a position on SGA in the future.
          2. Recall from Office for Reasons of Wrongdoing
            1. A member may be removed from SGA when the member has failed or refused to perform his or her duties or responsibilities as outlined in the SGA Constitution. Members may also be revoked for acts of malfeasance, criminal violations or violations of the University Code of Student Conduct.
            2. Any student may submit a request to have an SGA member removed from his or her position. Requests must be made in writing with rationale to an Executive Officer and the Administrative Advisor.
            3. The Executive Officer shall bring the request to the Executive Committee for review and substantiation.
            4. The Executive Committee will determine if the charges will be brought to the entire SGA membership.
            5. The Executive Committee will inform the member of the charges and will request that the member resigns or prepares a written defense within seven (7) days of notification of the charges.
            6. The Executive Committee will meet with said member after he or she submits a written defense. Upon completion of the meeting, the Executive Committee will determine if the charges should be presented to the SGA.
            7. If the charges will be forwarded to SGA the Executive Committee will submit its recommendations in writing to each SGA member.
            8. After hearing the case, the SGA will vote on the recall by secret ballot. The member may be recalled with a two-thirds vote of SGA.
            9. The vote will be tabulated by the SGA Secretary, Parliamentarian and/or an advisor, which will inform said member and the SGA Vice President of the vote.
            10. The SGA Vice President will announce the result of the vote.
            11. Any recalled member can appeal to the Vice President for Student Development.
            12. If a member is recalled from position, said member cannot hold a position on SGA in the future.
        3. Filling Vacancies
          1. Executive Officers
            1. In the case that a vacancy occurs in the office of SGA President, the Vice President shall assume the office of the President.
            2. In the case that a vacancy occurs in the office of any Executive Officer other than the President, the President will appoint a student to fulfill the duties of the position. The appointment must be approved with two-thirds SGA vote.
          2. Student Representatives
            1. In the case that a vacancy occurs in the position of Student Representative, the President will appoint a student that meets the requirements of the particular opening (i.e. commuter, non-traditional student, etc.) The appointment must be approved with a two-thirds SGA vote.
            2. The President is encouraged to discuss possible nominations with current SGA Representatives.

          Article XIV:Referenda, Amendments and Ratification

          1. Referenda
            1. A referendum on any question may be called by a petition signed by at least five (5) percent of the undergraduate student body, or a two-thirds SGA vote.
              1. The SGA Elections Commission shall be responsible for conducting all referenda and referendum vote by the undergraduate student body.
              2. The referendum will require a favorable vote by two-thirds of at least (10) percent of the undergraduate student body to pass.
          2. Amendments:
            1. Any proposed amendment to the Constitution shall be brought before SGA and requires a two-thirds SGA vote to pass favorably for consideration by the student body.
            2. If the amendment passes favorably with a two-thirds SGA vote, and approval of the SGA Administrative Advisor, the amendment will appear before the undergraduate student body.
            3. The amendment will require a favorable vote by two-thirds of at least ten (10) percent of the undergraduate student body to pass.
          3. Ratification of SGA Constitution
            1. Any proposed ratification to the SGA Constitution shall be brought before SGA and requires a two-thirds SGA vote to pass favorably for consideration by the student body.
            2. If the ratification passes favorably with a two-thirds SGA vote, and approval of the SGA Administrative Advisor, the amendment will appear before the undergraduate student body.
            3. The SGA Constitution will be ratified by a two-thirds vote of the undergraduate student body with a minimum of five (5) percent of the undergraduate students voting, and approval of the University President.
            4. This Constitution will become effective immediately upon ratification.