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.
The Student Council Officers shall be the President, the Vice President, the Treasurer, the Secretary, the Social Activities Director, the Communications Director, the GSIPM First-Year Member at Large, the GSTILE First-Year Member at Large, the GSIPM Second-Year Member at Large, and the GSTILE Second-Year Member at Large, all who 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.
Student Council Officers shall be elected to office in two separate elections. The Spring elections held in April will elect the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Social Activities Director and the Communications Director. The Fall elections held in September will elect all First- and Second-Year Members at Large, and any other seats that remain vacant following the Spring elections.
Beginning in Spring 2017, the Spring elections held in April will elect the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Social Activities Director and Second-Year Members at Large. The Fall elections held in September will elect the First-Year Members at Large, Secretary, and Communications Director.
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. During the Student Council meeting before their various Board/Group meetings, the constituent will request topics or concerns for discussion, 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:
- Committee Membership is open to any member of the Student Body (with the exception of the Conference Funding Committee). A list of Committee openings shall be announced to solicit participation from the Student Body by the Communications Director.
- Each Student Body member 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.
- Each Standing Committee shall present monthly accounts of the activities of the Committee to the Student Council during monthly General Meetings.
- All constituents must be Officers of the Student Council.
The Standing Committees and Constituents are as follows:
- Constitution Committee (3 members, open to all students): The Constitution Committee is responsible for ensuring adherence to the Student Council Constitution. Members will also oversee the process of suggesting and approving amendments to the Constitution, as outlined in the below “Amendments to the Constitution.”
- 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 Office of Student Services. Membership will be anonymous.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Strategic Working Group (5 members, open to all students): The Strategic Working Group seeks to bridge the gap between the student body, faculty, staff, and administration. Through monthly meetings with selected members of the faculty, staff, and administration, it will address any concerns and facilitate communication between the student body, faculty, staff, and administration.
- Election Committee (1 member to work in coordination with the Office of Student Services): The Election Committee shall organize and administer all regular and special Student Body elections. Officers and members of the Student Body running for a Student Council position cannot serve on the Committee.
- The President serves as the Board of Overseers constituent.
- The President serves as the ILG constituent.
- The Vice President serves as the AAG constituent.
- The Vice President serves as the APSIC constituent.
- A Member at Large 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
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 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 August 2016 amendments to the Constitution, are subject to a one-year trial period. The Student Council for the 2016-2017 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 six-member Executive Board with two representatives for each academic program. 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
- 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.
- Officers shall receive all benefits of Student Body membership, including voting privileges.
- A change in the Student Activity Fee must be accepted by the Student Council before any change is made.
II. OFFICERS AND DUTIES
- President: The President shall have the general responsibility for coordinating the activities of the Student Council and for directing and overseeing the publicizing of 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 her/his activities to the Student Council at every Student Council meeting.
- Vice President: The Vice President shall share the duties and responsibilities of the President. The Vice President shall serve as the AAG constituent. The Vice President shall also serve as the APSIC constituent. They shall serve as the Parliamentarian of the Student Council meetings and shall, in the absence of the President, preside at Student Council meetings. It is the responsibility of the Vice President to ensure all officers are adhering to Student Council rules and responsibilities.
- 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. They are also the signing officer of all Student Council’s budgetary expenses and reimbursements. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President and Vice President. The Treasurer works directly with the Assistant Dean of Student Services, who is the Budget Officer for the Student Council budget.
- Secretary: The Secretary shall be responsible for recording the minutes and acting as official timekeeper of all Student Council meetings. The Secretary shall maintain the permanent records of the Student Council and will assist the Communications Director in composing correspondence on behalf of the Student Council. They shall ensure that copies of the minutes of all Student Council meetings shall be distributed in a timely manner to all Student Council Officers, the Student Council permanent records, and the Student Council Online domain. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President, Vice President, and the Treasurer.
- Social Activities Director: The Social Activities Director shall chair the Social Activities Committee and Subcommittees (Follies, International Bazaar, etc.). The Social Activities Director shall be responsible for ensuring that regular opportunities are provided for intercultural events. Additionally, they shall be responsible for providing opportunities for students to share their feedback on campus community building. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, and Secretary.
- Communications Director: 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 the affairs of the Student Council and issues pertaining to the Student Body, while communicating with Student Services. 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. They shall preside at Student Council meetings in the absence of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and the Social Activities Director.
- First- and Second-Year GSIPM Members at Large: The GSIPM Members at Large will serve as the Student Council representatives for the GSIPM student body of their respective years (First or Second). These members will have voting privileges and articulate the interests of GSIPM students. They will host monthly office hours for their constituent base to voice concerns or issues and will meet with the GSIPM Dean and Program Chairs on an as-needed basis. They will also compile bi-weekly email updates with the Communications Chair. Finally, GSIPM Members at Large will be tasked with hosting at least one program-specific town hall meeting for each GSIPM program per semester.
- First- and Second-Year GSTILE Members at Large: The GSTILE Members at Large will serve as the Student Council representatives for the GSTILE student body of their respective years (First or Second). These members will have voting privileges and articulate the interests of GSTILE students. They will host monthly office hours for their constituent base to voice concerns or issues and will meet with the GSTILE Dean and Program Coordinators on an as-needed basis. They will also compile bi-weekly email updates with the Communications Chair. Finally, GSTILE Members at Large will be tasked with hosting at least one program-specific town hall meeting for each GSTILE program per semester.
III. STUDENT COUNCIL BUDGET
- 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.
- 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.
- 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 and this sum is 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 will be made available to all students within their respective Programs upon completion of an online application and approval by the Student Council. 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 Programrelated purchases, projects, and/or activities pursuant to further the educational resources and goals of the respective Program. 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.
- Conference Funds: 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 Funds.
- Club Funds: The Student Council shall provide clubs funding for their respective activities. (See Article VII of the Constitution for guidelines).
- Forum Funding: Upon fulfillment of the requirement that the organizers provide a clear and detailed proposal of how the funds will be used and how the forum will benefit the broader MIIS community, the Student Council will consider providing forum funding to student clubs and departments for approved events. The forum proposed must pass by a 2/3 vote by the officers of the Student Council. The Student Council reserves the right to reject the proposal or to allocate an alternative amount that is thought to be more appropriate. The Forum funds will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. The Student Council will vote on an approved amount to award for each forum.
- 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.
- Officers may hold only one position at a time.
- Members at Large must be registered students within their respective school and be students of their elected year.
- Elections for the positions of the President, Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, Social Activities Director and Communications Director shall be held each year in April. After Spring 2017, Communications Director, Secretary, and First-Year Members at Large will be elected in the fall, along with any open positions. President, Vice President, Treasurer, Social Activities Director and Second-Year Members at Large will be elected in the spring.
- Polls for all elections shall be open for at least two consecutive days for a minimum of six hours each day.
- Writein positions shall be allowed for each position.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- Voters of any year may vote for candidates running for Executive Officer positions. However, Voters may only vote for Members at Large candidates of the Voter’s respective school and year.
V. STUDENT COUNCIL
- The Student Council consists of all Officers of the Student Body as listed in Article III of the Constitution.
- 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.
- Two-thirds of Officers (7/10) in attendance shall constitute a quorum at Student Council meetings.
- Student Council meetings shall be held on a regular basis. 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.
- Special meetings may be called by the President upon written or verbal request by at least two thirds of the Student Council.
- Before each meeting, the President or designated Officer shall issue a meeting agenda. Any member wishing to include a topic on the agenda must contact the President or designated Officer prior to the meeting.
- Members of the Student Body shall be encouraged to attend the monthly General Student Council 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.
- At the first meeting after the election in September, the parliamentary procedure of the Student Council meetings shall be established and followed.
- 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.
- In order to remove an Officer from her/his position, the following procedure must be adhered to:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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 Member at Large) who supports these actions.
- 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.
- 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 August 16, 2016