Constitution and Bylaws

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Constitution of the University of Illinois Springfield Student Government Association

PREAMBLE

We the Students of the University of Illinois Springfield establish the Student Government Association as the representative body for the students. The students have the right to representation, in order to improve and protect the quality of education, and to better the overall environment of the University of Illinois Springfield. By maintaining student rights and interests, encouraging student involvement, and improving general student welfare we will improve this institution. We do ordain and establish this Constitution for the Student Government Association at the University of Illinois Springfield.

ARTICLE I: NAME

The name of the student organization that represents the student body shall be the Student Government Association of the University of Illinois Springfield, hereafter referred to as SGA.

ARTICLE II: AUTHORITY TO REPRESENT

The Student Government Association is the officially recognized student organization of the University of Illinois Springfield that represents the students of UIS both in the internal and external community and acts as the instrument through which students are able to provide input into the internal policies of the University of Illinois Springfield. The SGA has the authority to represent the students of the University of Illinois Springfield, through the election of Student Senators and Officers.

ARTICLE III: OBJECTIVE

The objective of the SGA shall be to promote a democratic form of student government, to provide students a forum for student issues, to offer the opportunity for leadership development in the individual, and to promote social, cultural, educational, and recreational activities for students of the University of Illinois Springfield.

ARTICLE IV: MEMBERSHIP OF THE STUDENT BODY

Section 1. Any person enrolled as a student for academic credit in any course offered under the auspices of the University of Illinois Springfield shall be automatically considered a member of the student body except a person who is concurrently a member of the University of Illinois faculty, civil service, or executive staff. All members of the student body as defined above shall be eligible to vote in student elections and referendums.

Section 2. All University of Illinois Springfield students shall have the right of inquiry, speech, and petition before the SGA.

ARTICLE V: MEMBERSHIP OF SGA

Section 1. Students elected or appointed to any position on the SGA are required to have and maintain a cumulative 2.5 GPA for all courses completed at the University of Illinois Springfield, except for first-year students with no credit (0 credit hours).

Members of the student body who serve on the Student Government Association or represent the student body by appointment of the SGA to campus or university committees must maintain at least half-time status at the time of appointment/election through the duration of their term in office. Half-time status is defined as being enrolled for a minimum of six (6) credit hours as an undergraduate student, or for a minimum of four (4) hours as a graduate student. Students who are in their final term of study and are completing only courses required for graduation are exempted from the half-time status requirement.

Section 2. The SGA shall be composed of seventeen (17) voting members, one (1) advisory voting member, one (1) appointed external vice-president and one (1) appointed parliamentarian.

The SGA of University of Illinois Springfield shall be comprised of two (2) divisions:

1.) The Executive Committee, consisting of President, Internal Vice-President, External Vice- President, Secretary, Treasurer, Parliamentarian, and the Student Trustee; and,

2.) The General Assembly, consisting of all Executive Officers and Senators.

Section 3. The membership of the SGA shall be as follows:

A. (1) President

B. (1) Internal Vice-President

C. (1) External Vice-President

D. (1) Parliamentarian

E. (1) Treasurer

F. (1) Secretary

G. (1) Senator from the school of Public Affairs and Administration, who must be a degree-seeking student enrolled in a major within the School of Public Affairs and Administration.

H. (1) Senator from the school of Liberal Arts and Sciences, who must be a degree-seeking student enrolled in a major within the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

I. (1) Senator from the College of Business and Management, who must be a degree-seeking student enrolled in a major within the College of Business and Management.

J. (1) Senator from the College of Education and Human Services, who must be a degree-seeking student enrolled in a major or minor within the College of Education and Human Services.

K. (1) Undergraduate Student Senator, who must be actively pursuing an undergraduate degree at the University of Illinois Springfield.

L. (1) Freshman Senator, who must be a degree-seeking undergraduate student who holds Freshman status at the time of seeking office and throughout the time of service on SGA.

M. (1) Senator of Peoria Campus, who must be enrolled in at least one course at the Peoria Campus.

N. (1) Student Representative to the University of Illinois at Springfield Board of Trustees, who shall serve ex-officio on both the Student Government Association and the Executive Committee.

O. (1) Senator for Transfer Students, an undergraduate student who has transferred to UIS from another college or university after earning a minimum of 15 academic credit hours of college- level transferable credit which is accepted towards degree completion at the University of Illinois Springfield.

P. (2) Senators- At-Large, who must be a degree-seeking undergraduate or graduate student.

Q. (1) Graduate Student Senator, who must be actively pursuing a graduate degree at the University of Illinois Springfield.

R. (1) Online Student Senator, who must be admitted to and enrolled in an online, degree-seeking program of study.

S. (1) International Student Senator, who must be a student that holds international student status at the time of seeking office and throughout the time of service on SGA.

ARTICLE VI: VACANCIES AND APPOINTMENTS

Section 1. In the case of vacancy in the office of the SGA President, the line of executive succession shall be the SGA Internal Vice-President, followed by the SGA External Vice-President, followed by the SGA Treasurer, followed by the SGA Secretary.

Section 2. In the case of a vacancy of any other position, the SGA President may appoint an interim member from the student body to serve until the vacancy is filled. The President shall carry out a minimum two (2) week advertised search to fill the open seat, which is open to all eligible members of the student body. After the search is completed, the interim member, if they served on the SGA prior to their appointment, will return to their respective seat.

Section 3. After either dismissal by the government or official receipt of the resignation, the SGA shall select a successor from among the student body. The SGA President shall make the appointment. The appointee must meet all membership qualifications for the vacant position. This candidate must be confirmed by a simple majority vote of the members of the SGA.

Section 4. No member of the SGA shall hold more than one elected SGA office at any time.

Section 5. Members appointed to any position on the SGA before the fall election shall serve until the next regularly scheduled election. Member appointed after the fall election shall serve the remainder of the term.

Section 6. Those positions on the SGA for which election is not regularly scheduled in the spring may not be appointed before fall elections are held.

Section 7. If a Senate position remains vacant after the spring elections, fall elections, and the two (2) week advertised search, that position is redefined as a Senator At-Large position until the next scheduled election.

Section 8. All members serving on the SGA shall not miss more than three meetings without approval by the Executive Board of the SGA. If a member has missed more than three meetings, the SGA shall have the ability to declare the seat vacant and appoint a new member who shall serve until the next election.

ARTICLE VII: DESCRIPTION OF DUTIES

Section 1.  All student body legislative power shall be vested in the Student Government Association.

Section 2. The President of SGA shall, at the time of seeking office, have a minimum of twelve (12) hours of undergraduate credit or eight (8) hours of graduate credit successfully completed at the University of Illinois Springfield. The President shall have been enrolled for at least two semesters at UIS. The President must, at the time of election, be able to serve for the entire academic year.

The President shall preside at Student Government meetings. The President is responsible for developing and distributing the agenda for each Student Government meeting. The President is an ex-officio member of all Student Government Committees.

The President shall have the power to nominate any student, in governmental service or not, into any committee or appoint persons to vacancies, subject to the approval of the SGA at-large.

The President shall appoint a Parliamentarian and an External Vice-President, to be approved by the SGA at-large, within two (2) business meetings of his/her tenure.

Section 3. The Internal Vice-President of the Student Government shall, at the time of seeking office, have a minimum of twelve (12) hours of undergraduate credit or eight (8) hours of graduate credit successfully completed at the University of Illinois Springfield. The Internal Vice- President shall have been enrolled for at least two semesters at UIS. The Internal Vice-President must, at the time of election, be able to serve for the entire academic year.

The Internal Vice-President is an ex-officio member of all Student Government Committees and will supervise the coordination of and between committees.

The Internal Vice-President shall create a written report at the end of each semester detailing all SGA committee activity. The report shall be given to the SGA members, the Student Body, and the Campus Senate.

The Internal Vice-President shall nominate with the full consultation and advise from the SGA Treasurer, a chairperson for the Student Organization Funding Association (SOFA) and the Student Activities Committee (SAC) to the SGA at-large for confirmation. The membership of SOFA and SAC shall submit nominations to the Internal Vice-President for consideration in regards to the chairmanship of each committee.

Section 4. The External Vice-President of the Student Government Association shall serve as a non-voting member on both the Student Government Association and the Executive Committee.

The External Vice-President is responsible for developing and maintaining relationships between the SGA and legislators, administrators, students, the Alumni Association and Springfield community.

Section 5. The Parliamentarian shall serve as a non-voting member on both the Student Government Association and the Executive Committee, who shall advise on Parliamentary procedure.

During the course of a meeting, the work of the Parliamentarian should be limited to giving advice to all members on SGA.

The Parliamentarian, as the Chair of the Rules and Constitution Committee, will be responsible for the upkeep and maintenance of the University of Illinois Springfield Student Government Association Constitution and Bylaws.

The Parliamentarian shall have final decision in any discrepancies or disputes over the Constitution and its bylaws, subject to a 2/3 veto of the Student Government Association.

Section 6. The Treasurer shall keep a record of all expenses and income of the Student Government. The Treasurer will obtain all student fees information through the Vice-Chancellor of Student Affairs.

The Treasurer shall serve as the Vice-Chair of the Student Organization Funding Association.

The Treasurer shall compile a list of possible Chairpersons of the Student Organization Funding Association and the Student Activities Committee. They shall report the list to the Internal Vice- President along with their recommendation. This list and recommendations shall be provided to the SGA at-large for consideration.

Section 7. The Secretary of Student Government shall be responsible for the compilation and distribution of minutes for regular business meetings and shall keep a record of all official correspondence of the SGA for archiving.

The Secretary shall serve as the Vice-Chair of the Student Activities Committee.

Section 8.  The Student Representative to the University of Illinois Board of Trustees shall be an ex-officio member of the Student Government Association, and shall be governed by the policies of the Board of Trustees and in accordance with the University of Illinois Trustees Act (110 ILCS 310, et. seq.). The Student Trustee will have a non-binding, advisory vote on the SGA.

Section 9. The Senators of the SGA shall report to the Internal Vice-President of the Student Government Association and will be responsible for membership on two committees, distributed accordingly: one (1) Student Government Association committees and one (1) committee at the Campus Senate, UIS, or Central Administration level each semester. Each Senator will have a vote on SGA.

Senators are responsible for investigating/expressing student concerns and opinions within their respective schools or interests.

ARTICLE VIII: COMMITTEES

Section 1. Unless otherwise stated by this Constitution or the SGA Bylaws, the President shall have the authority to appoint the Chair and members of each committee. A simple majority vote by the SGA at-large is necessary to confirm the chair and any nominee, except when the SGA is unable to attain quorum. When the SGA is unable to attain quorum, a simple majority vote of the Executive Committee is necessary to confirm any appointment, subject to review by the SGA at-large at their next regularly scheduled meeting.

Section 2. The Chairperson of each committee shall make regular written and formal reports to the SGA on the procedures and activities of the committees of which they serve.

Section 3. There shall be the following standing committees:

A.) Executive Committee

B.) Student Activities Committee

C.) Student Organization Funding Association

D.) Rules and Constitution Committee

E.) Elections Committee

Section 4. The Vice-Chancellor of Student Affairs, Director of Student Life, SGA President, and SGA Internal Vice-President will serve as ex-officio members of all committees.

Section 5. Ad hoc committees may be formed by a simple majority vote of the SGA at-large. Ad Hoc committees shall serve as needed until their services are rendered complete.

ARTICLE IX: MEETINGS

Section 1. Quorum for regular meetings shall be a simple majority of the total voting membership enumerated in the SGA Constitution.

Section 2. The parliamentary manual for all SGA meetings and committees shall be Robert’s Rules of Order, latest edition, except where its procedure is expressly modified in the SGA Constitution or Bylaws.

Section 3. The SGA shall convene regularly during the fall and spring semesters. During the summer semester, the SGA shall convene when a special session is called for.

Section 4. The SGA President or the Internal Vice-President acting on behalf of the President with a minimum 24-hour notice may call a special session. Quorum for special sessions shall be a majority of the total voting membership enumerated in the SGA Constitution.

Section 5. Proxy votes are not allowed at any SGA meeting or committee meeting.

Section 6. All votes before the SGA require a simple majority of those present and voting to pass, unless otherwise stated.

Section 7. While the SGA and Executive committee reserve the right to adjourn into closed session for legal, monetary, and personnel issues, all regular SGA meetings must be open to the public and public comment and publically recorded.

Section 8. In cases of emergency, or when quorum of the SGA cannot be obtained, the Executive Committee may act on behalf of the SGA to advise the Campus or University Administrators, the Board of Trustees, or other individuals or bodies on policy matters as requested or necessary; however, such advice shall be offered for review at the next regular meeting of the SGA.

ARTICLE X: AMENDING THE SGA CONSTITUTION

Section 1. Any member of the Rules and Constitution Committee or Student Body may offer, in writing, a proposed amendment to the SGA five (5) days before the next regular meeting. Copies of the proposed amendment will be given to the SGA President, Advisor, and SGA Secretary.

Section 2. All proposed amendments must receive a two-thirds majority of the SGA at-large on the next meeting of business. Amendments, once approved by the SGA, shall be advertised and then brought before the entire Student Body to be voted upon, in the next election or special election. Amendments approved by the Student Government Association shall require a two- thirds majority vote by the voting Student Body in order to be ratified.

Section 3. Revisions of the SGA constitution shall be proposed in the same fashion as amendments.

ARTICLE XI: NON-DISCRIMINATION

Section 1. No student shall be discriminated by or receive special treatment from the SGA on account of race, age, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, religion, or political affiliation.

ARTICLE XII: BYLAWS

Section 1. The SGA shall be empowered to adopt its own rules and procedures, through bylaws, consistent with the SGA Constitution.

Section 2. Bylaws and amendments to the bylaws may be introduced in writing by any voting member and passed by a simple majority vote of the SGA members present and voting.

Section 3. Refer to the SGA bylaws for complete policy, rules, and procedures.

ARTICLE XIII. PRESIDENTIAL EXPENDITURES

Section 1. The SGA President has the right to make purchases on behalf of the SGA without approval from the SGA as along as the expenditure is immediately reported to the SGA Treasurer and is less than or equal to one percent of the general budget of the SGA for the given fiscal year.

ARTICLE XIV: ELECTIONS

Section 1. In the spring semester, an election shall be held with the purpose of filling the following positions: The Executive Committee, including the President, Internal Vice-President, External Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer and Student Trustee; and, the College Senators, including the Senator from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Senator from the College of Business and Management, the Senator from the College of Public Affairs and Administration, and the Senator from the College of Education and Human Services, Undergraduate Student Senator, Graduate Student Senator, and the Online Student Senator.

Section 2. All positions not filled by election during the spring shall be elected in the fall. This election must be held no later than the sixth week of the fall semester.

Section 3. The candidates for office shall be elected to the Student Government upon receiving the most votes cast in an at-large election of the student population and confirmation on part of the candidate.

ARTICLE XV: TERMS OF OFFICE

Section 1. The successful candidates elected during the spring semester shall be installed no later than the last day of classes for the spring term. Successful candidates elected during the fall shall be installed in office at the meeting following the completion of the election.

Section 2. Members elected during the spring shall serve until the end of the spring semester following their election, and members elected in the fall shall serve until the end of the spring semester of the academic year during which they were elected.

Section 3. No Executive Officer may hold the same elected position more than two (2) years total.

ARTICLE XVI: DISCIPLINARY ACTION

Disciplinary action may be taken against any elected or appointed SGA official, in accordance with the Bylaws and Student Disciplinary Code.

ARTICLE XVII: EFFECTIVE DATE

This Constitution shall take effect immediately after ratification by a majority vote of the student body.