Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

Constitution

Student Council Constitution

I. STUDENT COUNCIL

The Student Council serves as the governing body for all students enrolled at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. The Student Council shall act as a voice for the student body in meetings and other communications with the faculty and staff of the Middlebury Institute. Further, the Student Council shall reflect the interests of the student body consistent with the purpose of the Student Council (see Article II). The Student Council shall be composed of students from both the Graduate School of International Policy & Management (GSIPM) and the Graduate School of Translation, Interpretation, and Language Education (GSTILE), as defined in Article III.

II. PURPOSE OF THE STUDENT COUNCIL

The purpose of the Student Council is to represent and address the needs and interests of the student body at the Middlebury Institute. It shall strive to facilitate communications and interaction between the Middlebury Institute students, faculty, staff, and the surrounding community, and shall sponsor various educational and social activities which will further this purpose.

III. OFFICERS

The Student Council Executive Officers shall be the President, the Vice President, the Treasurer, the Secretary, the Social Activities Director, the Communications Director, and the Historian. General Council Officers include the GSIPM Senator; the GSTILE Senator; six GSIPM Program Representatives (one each for the DPP, IEP, IEM, NPTS, MBA, and ITED programs); and three GSTILE Program Representatives (one each for T&I, TLM, and TESOL/TFL). All officers shall serve a term of two consecutive (Fall and Spring) semesters.

IV. VOTING PRIVILEGES

All Student Council Officers, with the exception of the President, shall have full voting privileges on all Student Council affairs. In the case of a tie vote, the President must cast the deciding vote.

V. ELECTIONS

Student Council Officers shall be elected to office in two separate elections. The Spring elections held in April will elect the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Social Activities Director, GSIPM Senator, and GSTILE Senator. The Fall elections held in September will elect Secretary, Communications Director, Historian, and all Program Representatives. Although the Secretary is typically responsible for all elections, the Vice President will serve in this capacity for the Fall elections, prior to the election of the Secretary.

VI. STANDING COMMITTEES

The Student Council shall create and administer various Committees consistent with the purpose of the Student Council. The President shall appoint the Chair of each of the Standing Committees at the first Student Council meeting after the Fall elections. Any vacant Standing Committee Chairs will be selected on an as-needed basis.

Ad Hoc Committees can also be established for special Student Body initiatives when necessary and are dissolved when their purpose has been achieved. Ad Hoc Committees must be approved by Student Council in consultation with the Office of Student Services.

The President may appoint any member of the Student Body to the position of Standing/Ad ­Hoc Committee Chair. A Chair may or may not be a student currently serving on the Student Council as an Officer. Student Council Officers may screen potential candidates as they see fit.

The Student Council shall also have constituent members on the Board of Overseers, Institute Leadership Group (ILG), Academic Affairs Group (AAG), Academic Policy, Standards, & Instruction Committee (APSIC), and Faculty Senate. These constituent members must all be officers of the Student Council. Each constituent member will attend all meetings of their respective Boards or Groups. They will communicate student concerns in these forums, and during the Student Council meeting after their various Board/Group meetings, the constituents will report back to Student Council on the topics from the Board/Group meetings.

The following conditions apply to Committee and Constituent membership:

1. Committee Membership is open to any member of the Student Body (with the exception of the Conference Funding Committee and the Judiciary Committee). A list of Committee openings shall be maintained by the Secretary and announced to solicit participation from the Student Body by the Communications Director.

2. Each Student Council Officer must participate in at least two Standing Committees, including as Chairs. They shall have the opportunity to indicate his/her interest on which Committee s/he would like to serve. However, Standing Committee membership and composition shall be at the full discretion of each Committee Chair, and appointment of Standing Committee Chairs shall be at the full discretion of the President.

3. Any member of the Student Body shall have the opportunity to indicate her/his interest on which Committee s/he would like to serve. However, Standing Committee membership and composition shall be at the full discretion of each Committee Chair.

4. Each Standing Committee shall present monthly accounts of the activities of the Committee to the Student Council during monthly General Meetings.

The Standing Committees and Constituents are as follows:

  1. Conference Funding Committee (3-4 Student Council Officers; Staff Chair: Director of Student Life): The Conference Funding Committee is responsible for reviewing student applications for conference funding. Members will also suggest improvements to the application process and Committee policies and procedures, in consultation with the Staff Chair. Membership will be anonymous with the exception of the Treasurer, who chairs this Committee.
  2. Community Communications Committee (3 members, open to all students): The Community Communications Committee is responsible for outreach to the broader MIIS community. Members will organize the Student Council blog, facilitate e-mail correspondence, and seek out opportunities for regular communication of Student Council updates. The Communications Director chairs this Committee.
  3. Library Committee (2 members, open to all students): The primary responsibility of the Library Committee is to administer the annual Library survey and communicate student suggestions to Library staff. Members will also plan and oversee Coffee Week during the last week of classes every semester.
  4. Social Activities Committee (5 members, open to all students): The Social Activities Committee shall organize such extracurricular activities as directed by the Student Council in coordination with the Office of Student Services. These include but are not limited to: monthly social hours, the annual Follies event, the annual International Bazaar, as well as any special events and other recreational activities. The Social Activities Director chairs this Committee.
  5. International Student Committee (at least 5 members, open to all students): The International Student Committee aims to discuss international student concerns, find support, address shared issues, and advocate for potential solutions. The committee will serve as a liaison with the administration, and especially the Office of Student Services, on related matters.
  6. Judiciary Committee (at least 5 Student Council Officers, with selection criteria): The Judiciary Committee is closely linked to the Institute’s Conduct Judicial Board for any student academic and non-academic offenses. Members must be full-time, degree-seeking students in good academic standing and without any past disciplinary record. They must submit to an interview process with the faculty and staff members of the Conduct Judicial Board selection committee to confirm their eligibility. The Judiciary Committee will participate in the student selection process for the Conduct Judicial Board, including soliciting nominations, interviewing candidates for eligibility, and facilitating elections in the case of more eligible candidates than positions. The pool of members will also participate in judiciary reviews on an ad hoc basis, when other members of the Conduct Judicial Board are unavailable or otherwise ineligible. This may include cases where vacancies remain after the official selection process.
  7. The President serves as the Board of Overseers constituent.
  8. The President serves as the ILG constituent.
  9. The Vice President serves as the AAG constituent.
  10. The Vice President serves as the APSIC constituent.
  11. Either the GSIPM Senator or the GSTILE Senator will serve as Faculty Senate constituent.
VII. STUDENT CLUBS

The Student Council shall fund various student clubs that are approved by the Office of Student Services. All clubs must go through the official application and approval process and must follow all policies and procedures outlined by the Office of Student Services. Student Council Officers will be responsible for determining budget allocations for student club funding requests.

VIII. AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION

All Student Council Officers shall share in the responsibility of ensuring adherence to the Student Council Constitution. Members shall also oversee the process of suggesting and approving amendments to the Constitution, as outlined below.

There are two ways to propose amendments to the Constitution. Amendments to this Constitution can be prepared by at least two officers of the Student Council (or suggested in a motion that is seconded) OR submitted in a petition by the Student Body to the Student Council President. To become effective, a proposed amendment must be approved by a 2/3 vote of all Officers of the Student Council. Any modification of this Constitution must be made known to the Student Body in a timely manner. The Assistant Dean of Student Services must approve all amendments.

It is noted that the changes to the Student Council structure, made effective in the May 2017 amendments to the Constitution, are subject to a one-year trial period. The Student Council for the 2017-2018 academic year will monitor the structure and evaluate whether it is beneficial to Student Council operations, or whether it would be best to return to the previous structure of a ten-member  Council or to adopt an alternative structure. A vote must take place at the end of the academic year to determine the future Student Council structure.

The Bylaws of the Constitution of the Student Body

I. OFFICERSHIP AND DUES
  1. Officership may only be conveyed upon students who have completed payment of the Student Activity Fee at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

  2. Officers shall receive all benefits of Student Body membership, including voting privileges.
  3. A change in the Student Activity Fee must be accepted by the Student Council before any change is made.
II. OFFICERS AND DUTIES

1. President: The President shall have the general responsibility for coordinating the activities of the Student Council and for directing and overseeing the response to the affairs of the Student Body. They shall preside at all Student Council meetings. The President shall not have voting privileges, except in the case of a tie vote, during which they must cast the deciding vote. The President shall be the lead representative of the Student Body in dealings with Middlebury Institute’s faculty and staff, and with the community. The President shall serve as the Board of Overseers constituent. The President shall also serve as the ILG constituent. The President shall present an account of these activities to the Student Council at every Student Council meeting. It is the responsibility of the President to ensure all Student Council Executive Officers are adhering to Student Council rules and responsibilities.

2. Vice President: The Vice President shall share the duties and responsibilities of the President. They shall serve as the Parliamentarian of Student Council meetings and shall, in the absence of the President, preside at Student Council meetings. The Vice President shall serve as the AAG constituent. The Vice President shall also serve as the APSIC constituent. The Vice President shall present an account of these activities to the Student Council at every Student Council meeting. It is the responsibility of the Vice President to ensure all Student Council Senators are adhering to Student Council rules and responsibilities, including similar oversight of Student Council Program Representatives in their own adherence to Student Council rules and responsibilities.

3. Treasurer: The Treasurer shall be the custodian of the Student Activity funds. They shall keep all financial records, disburse funds, and present monthly and annual accounts of financial status of Student Activity funds to the Student Council. The Treasurer will be responsible for communicating with all funding applicants and recipients to guide them through the application and reimbursement process. They are also the signing officer of all Student Council’s budgetary expenses and reimbursements. The Treasurer works directly with the Assistant Dean of Student Services, who is the Budget Officer for the Student Council budget. The Treasurer shall chair the Conference Funding Committee. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President and Vice President.

4. Secretary: The Secretary shall be responsible for recording the minutes and acting as official timekeeper of all Student Council meetings. The Secretary shall be the recipient of agenda requests from students (including funding requests), faculty, staff and Student Council Officers. They shall prepare meeting agendas and disseminate them to attendees prior to the meeting. The Secretary shall maintain public record of all meetings and ensure that copies of meeting minutes are distributed to the MIIS community in a timely manner, in coordination with the Communications Director. They shall be responsible for internal communications within the Council, and will manage the Student Council e-mail account, either responding to external requests or directing these requests to the appropriate Student Council Officer. The Secretary shall also be responsible for organizing and administering all regular and special Student Council elections, in coordination with the Office of Student Services. The position of Secretary is reserved for students in their first year, including first- and second-semester students at the time of the September elections. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President, Vice President, and the Treasurer.

5. Social Activities Director: The Social Activities Director shall chair the Social Activities Committee and Sub­committees (Follies, International Bazaar, etc.). They shall organize Social Hours, Follies, International Bazaar, and any other Student Council-led social events, which may include reaching out to student clubs, purchasing supplies and materials, recruiting volunteers, and event logistics. They will also work closely with the Communications Director to publicize these events. The Social Activities Director shall be responsible for ensuring that regular opportunities are provided for intercultural events. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary.

6. Communications Director: The Communications Director shall chair the Communications Committee. The Communications Director shall be responsible for maintaining updated content on the Student Council Blog, Student Council Facebook Page, and other Student Council media.  They will also be responsible for publicizing meetings, events, and affairs of the Student Council and any issues pertaining to the Student Body, in communication with Student Services. This includes sending all-student e-mails, generating graphics to promote events, and submitting information to digital signs and the “This Week at MIIS” newsletter. The Communications Director will work closely with the Secretary and President to ensure that all meeting minutes and agendas are made public in a timely manner on the Student Council Blog. The position of Communications Director is reserved for students in their first year, including first- and second-semester students at the time of the September elections. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and Social Activities Director.

7. Historian: The Historian shall serve to preserve institutional memory within the Student Council. During Student Council meetings, the Historian will share historical context and precedents made at previous meetings to inform Student Council decisions. They will utilize the Secretary’s minutes to record important decisions that may affect future decision-making. Additionally, the Historian shall be responsible for maintaining adequate documentation of Student Council events and affairs, including activities funded by Student Council through its various funding mechanisms. They shall work with the Communications Director to ensure proper distribution of this information and documentation. Finally, they will solicit regular feedback from the student body and communicate important findings to the Student Council. The position of Historian is reserved for students in their first year, including first- and second-semester students at the time of the September elections. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, Social Activities Director, and Communications Director.

8. GSIPM & GSTILE Senators: The GSIPM & GSTILE Senators shall serve as supervisors for the Program Representatives in their respective schools, and as liaisons between the Council, the student body, GSIPM and GSTILE Deans, and program faculty. The GSIPM Senator will oversee the six GSIPM Program Representatives for DPP, IEM, IEP, ITED, MBA, and NPTS; the GSTILE Senator will oversee the three GSTILE Program Representatives for TESOL/TFL, TLM, and T&I. These members will have voting privileges and shall ensure that Program Representatives are upholding all of their responsibilities. Senators will support Program Representatives in organizing town hall meetings for every program and will make every attempt to attend these town hall meetings. The Senator will work with Program Representatives to determine the appropriate response to student requests or concerns, and shall meet with the Program Chairs or Coordinators and the GSIPM and GSTILE Deans on an as-needed basis. Reporting directly to the Vice President, the Senator will articulate the interests of students in their respective schools.

9. Program Representatives: Each Program Representative shall serve as the direct link between his/her respective program and the Student Council. These members will have voting privileges and shall articulate the interests of students in their academic program. They will host monthly office hours for their constituent base to field concerns or suggestions. Program Representatives shall be responsible for hosting, under the supervision of the GSIPM or GSTILE Senator, at least one town hall meeting per semester. They will work with their respective Senator to identify the appropriate response to student requests or concerns, and shall meet with the Program Chairs or Coordinators and the GSIPM and GSTILE Deans when necessary. They shall also organize at least one social, educational, or career-related event per semester, with the support of Student Council Program Funding.

 

III. STUDENT COUNCIL BUDGET

1. The budget of the Student Council shall be the Student Activity Fee paid by the Student Body during registration at the Middlebury Institute, in addition to any rollover money from the previous year's Student Council budget.

2. Student Activity Funds: The Student Council shall fund various activities on campus based upon prior budget planning at the beginning of the academic year. Any revenue or unused funds shall revert back to the general fund of the Student Council at the end of the academic year, with the exception of club revenue. All clubs who generate revenue can have this rollover to the club for the next academic year.

3. Program Funds: At the beginning of the Fall semester, the Student Council shall allocate funds to each Program represented on the Student Council such that $5 is distributed for each student enrolled in the Program, this sum should be divided between the Fall and Spring semesters. In addition, in the Spring semester, $5 will be allocated to any new students in each program. Program Funding is for use by the Program Representatives to support any social, educational, or career-related event for their program, at least once every semester. Upon the consent of the Student Council, and, if necessary, in consultation with the Dean and/or Program Chair of the respective Program, Program Funds may be used for program­-related purchases, projects, and/or activities pursuant to further the educational resources and goals of the respective Program. Otherwise, to gain access to the funding, the Program Representative need only communicate his/her plans to the respective Senator for approval. Any proposed activities must benefit all students within the Program, and the Student Council requires organizers to post their event to the Middlebury Institute events calendar and notify all students enrolled in the program via e-mail, copying the Student Council on any event-related communications. Funds will be made available on a reimbursement basis after receipts are submitted. Any unused portion of the allocation shall revert back to the general fund of the Student Council at the end of the academic year.

4. Conference Funding: The Student Council shall award a limited amount of funding to subsidize registration and travel expenses for current MIIS students attending and presenting at conferences. Conference­related costs include conference registration, lodging, and transportation (airfare, public transportation, parking, gas and tolls). Food, drink and entertainment are not covered. Funds will be awarded to select students upon submission of a satisfactory application to the Conference Funding Committee, and funds will be made available on a reimbursement basis after receipts are submitted. The Student Council can determine how much to contribute to the Conference Funding.

5. Club Funding: In an effort to support student clubs, the Student Council may allocate funding for club-specific activities, such as membership dues, private events, and club supplies. If the club is planning an event directed toward the broader MIIS community, forum funding should be requested in the place of club funding. Costs covered by club funding may include but are not limited to: dues; refreshments; speaker fees, transportation, or lodging; licenses to screen films; supplies; etc. Upon a student club’s submission of a satisfactory funding request, the Student Council will consider providing club funding for the designated activities. A satisfactory funding request will include the purpose of the funds requested, the benefits anticipated, and a comprehensive, detailed budget. In the case of requests over $250, a PowerPoint presentation at the next available Student Council meeting is also required. Club funding should be requested at least two weeks in advance of the planned events to ensure Student Council review, and it will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. Allocated funds will be made available on a reimbursement basis after receipts are submitted. The Student Council shall determine how much to contribute to Club Funding from its budget (See Article VII of the Constitution for guidelines).

6. Forum Funding: As opposed to club funding, forum funding aims to support student clubs and academic departments (spearheaded by students in this case) to hold open events that will benefit the broader MIIS community. Costs covered by forum funding may include but are not limited to: refreshments; speaker fees, transportation, or lodging; licenses to screen films; etc. A satisfactory funding request will include the purpose of the funds requested, the anticipated benefits to the broader MIIS community, and a comprehensive, detailed budget. In the case of requests over $750, a PowerPoint presentation at the next available Student Council meeting is also required. Forum funding should be requested at least two weeks in advance of the planned events to ensure Student Council review. The Student Council will vote on an approved amount to award for each forum, and reserves the right to reject the proposal or to allocate an alternative amount that is thought to be more appropriate. The forum proposed must pass by a 2/3 vote by the officers of the Student Council with 12 of 18 voting in favor. Forum funding will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis and will be made available on a reimbursement basis after receipts are submitted. The Student Council shall determine how much to contribute to Forum

IV. ELECTIONS

1. The Officers of the Student Council are open to all members in good standing. Officers must be students at the Middlebury Institute throughout their term of office.

2. Officers may hold only one position at a time.

3. The positions of Secretary, Communications Director, and Historian may only be filled by students in their first year of study at the Institute, including either first- or second-semester students at the time of the September elections.

4. Senators must be registered students within their respective schools.

5. Program representatives must be registered students within their respective programs.

6. Elections for the positions of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Social Activities Director, GSIPM Senator, and GSTILE Senator shall be held each year in April. Elections for the positions of Secretary, Communications Director, Historian, and Program Representatives will be elected each year in September, along with any vacant positions.

7. Polls for all elections shall be open for at least two consecutive days for a minimum of six hours each day.

8. Write­in positions shall be allowed for each position. The position shall be offered to the write-in candidate who received the greatest number of votes--and then to the candidates with the next greatest number of votes, should the original candidate reject the position--and appointed by the President with the approval of the Student Council.

9. In the case of a tie or situation where none of the candidates receive simple majority, a run­off election will be held. The run­off election dates will be advertised no later than the first Friday after the original election. The run­off election must be held no later than 14 days after the closing of the first round of elections.

10. If only one candidate stands for office, an election for that position shall still be held. If the candidate fails to gain majority of the votes received, a new election shall be held. This new election shall be held no later than the first Friday after the original election.

11. In the event that an elected council member terminates office before their term is started, Student Council will refer to the original election results to determine the candidate with the second-highest number of votes to fill that position. If there were no other candidates running for that office, the President, with the approval of the Student Council, shall appoint an interim to serve until the next election.

12. Voters of any year may vote for candidates running for Executive Officer positions. However, Voters may only vote for Senators and Program Representatives of the Voter’s respective school and academic program.

V. STUDENT COUNCIL

1. The Student Council consists of all Officers of the Student Body as listed in Article III of the

Constitution.

2. Student Council Officers are expected to attend all Student Council Meetings. The unexcused absence of an Officer from three Student Council meetings shall be considered a failure to fulfill duties of her/his office and grounds for removal. An excused absence can be obtained by contacting the President or Secretary. After the first unexcused absence, the Officer will be given a verbal warning. After a second warning, a written warning will be served. A third and final unexcused absence will result in removal from office.

3. Two-thirds of Officers (12/18) in attendance shall constitute a quorum at Student Council meetings. This includes the President or presiding officer, even though they are not entitled to vote.

4. Student Council meetings shall be held on a regular basis. At a minimum, the Student Council will hold one open meeting per month in addition to one closed regular meeting and one flexible meeting, the format of which will be determined by the President and Vice President in advance. The Student Council meeting schedule shall be determined during the summer, prior to the first Student Council meeting after the elections in September, and shall be approved by a simple majority vote of the Student Council.

5. Special meetings may be called by the President upon written or verbal request by at least two­ thirds of the Student Council.

6. Before each meeting, the Secretary shall issue a meeting agenda. Any member wishing to include a topic on the agenda must contact the Secretary prior to the meeting.

7. Members of the Student Body shall be encouraged to attend the monthly open meetings. However, members shall be entitled to representation by their elected Student Council Officers only, unless otherwise permitted by the Executive Officer presiding at the meeting. They may also be asked by the Student Council to withdraw from the meeting at any time.

8. At the first meeting after the election in September, the parliamentary procedure of the Student Council meetings shall be established and followed.

9. Unless stated otherwise, a Student Council motion requires a simple majority vote (10/18) to pass.

10. Any Officer of the Student Council may be removed from her/his position if they fail to fulfill the duties of her/his office or carry out her/his duties in an improper manner, or abuse her/his position in the interest of personal advancement or to the detriment of the organization.

11. In order to remove an Officer from her/his position, the following procedure must be adhered to:

a. A member of the Student Body must contact the Officer, as well as another Officer, in writing and inform them of her/his intention. The Assistant Dean of Student Services must be notified of any intention to remove an Officer.

b. The Officer, with the approval of the Student Council, shall appoint an arbitrator who shall communicate with both the member and the Officer in an attempt to reach an agreement. If no agreement can be reached by the next Student Council meeting, the arbitrator shall report to the Student Council, and the member shall petition for the Officer’s removal.

c. The member must petition the Student Council, and must include the names of at least ten percent of the Student Body (or twenty percent of the respective School if the Officer is a Senator or thirty percent of the respective Program if the Officer is a Program Representative) who supports these actions.

d. The petition must be addressed and a decision made at the next Student Council meeting. If the Student Council votes to remove an Officer from her/his position, a vote by the Officer’s constituency to approve this decision must be held in a timely manner.

e. An Officer may be removed by a two-thirds vote of the Student Council, and an approval of this decision by a majority of the votes received from the Officer’s constituency. The Assistant Dean of Student Services must also be notified before the removal of any Officer.  

VI. AMENDMENTS TO THE BYLAWS

Amendments to these Bylaws may be proposed in the same manner as the amendments to the Constitution of the Student Council. To become effective, the majority of Officers of the Student Council must approve a proposed amendment. Any modification of Bylaws must be made known to the Student Body in a timely manner. All amendments and modifications must also be approved by the Assistant Dean of Student Services.

 

Revised May 12, 2017