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The governing docuements of GCSA consist of the GCSA Constitution and the GCSA Bylaws. You can view them below or download them.
The Constitution of GCSA
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Article One ~ The Legislative Branch
SECTION 1. There shall be a Student Assembly that is entrusted to be the agents and caretakers of the Student Body and shall possess the full legislative power of GCSA. They shall have the power to determine the responsibilities of the Student Government administration and to establish various divisions and organizations within GCSA; the power to determine the appropriation of funds, to ratify any binding agreements between GCSA and outside organizations, to act and advocate in the name of the Student Body, and to enact any other such legislation they deem necessary and proper to serve the interests of the students. The power of impeachment shall be provided for with legislation, and the responsibility to try all impeachments is vested with the Assembly.
SECTION 2. The full undergraduate Student Body shall elect six Representatives at-Large. There shall be Four Class Representatives, one elected by each Class. The Assembly shall consist of all ten Representatives who shall have equal voting authority.
SECTION 3. The Student Assembly shall determine the rules of their proceedings and the administration of their own affairs, and they may discipline or expel a member by two-thirds concurrence. The Assembly shall meet on a customary basis and a majority of duly elected Representatives shall constitute a quorum to conduct business. The right of the Student Body to be informed and provided the opportunity to be involved in the proceedings of the Student Assembly shall not be abridged, except when three-fourths deem it necessary to meet in executive session.
Article Two ~ The Executive
SECTION 1. There shall be an Executive President who is the chief executive officer of GCSA. He or she shall oversee the Student Government administration and ensure the execution of all legislation. He or she shall review all legislative acts of the Assembly, and within ten days may return with his or her written objections, an act which he or she finds contrary to the interests of the Student Body; in which case, the act shall not be valid unless two-thirds of the Assembly reconsider and adopt the act over the Executive President’s objections.
SECTION 2. The Executive President shall be elected by the undergraduate Student Body with an Executive Vice President. In the case of death, resignation, or removal of the Executive President, the Executive Vice President shall assume his or her office. In the case of the temporary absence or inability of the Executive President, the Executive Vice President shall act as Executive President. Further provisions of succession to the Executive President may be provided by legislation.
SECTION 3. As provided by legislation, there may be subordinate Officers that are elected by the Student Body, who shall assist the Executive President in the discharge of essential functions of the Student Government administration. As provided by legislation, there may be subordinate unelected Officers of the Student Government administration and other organizations. The Executive President shall appoint these officers with the consent of the Student Assembly.
SECTION 4. Officers of the Student Government administration and among the organizations shall be removed from office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, serious violations of college policy or other offences as provided by legislation. The concurrence of two-thirds of the Assembly is required for conviction.
Article Three ~ Requirements of Office
SECTION 1. All officers of the Student Government Administration and the Assembly, and other officers of the various organizations and divisions, must abide by this Constitution and all legislation and policies made pursuant thereof. This Constitution shall be the highest governing legislation in GCSA, except as otherwise provided for by the policies of Gordon College, and Federal and State law.
SECTION 2. The qualifications to assume any elected office of the Student Government shall be determined by legislation.
Article Four ~ Amendments
With the concurrence of three-fourths of the Student Assembly, a proposal to amend this Constitution may be made, and shall be ratified upon the agreement of two-thirds of the voting Student Body.
The Bylaws of GCSA
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Article One ~ The Student Assembly
Except as otherwise provided for by the Gordon College Student Life Handbook, the Student Assembly shall have and exercise the general legislative control of the Gordon College Student Association. Its ultimate authority is affirmed through its Constitutional mandate to represent the interests of the student body and govern this association. Common powers of the Assembly shall include, but is not limited to:
- Serving actively as advocates for student needs by funding and sponsoring appropriate initiatives, programs, and resolutions
- Adopting policy priorities and objectives for the Executive President or such officers to discharge
- Exercising general control of all GCSA funds by determining an annual budget and periodically making amendments thereto
- Adopting charters for new Student Organizations and Executive Council Organizations
- Reviewing all nominations for appointments from the Executive President, and providing consent for appointments that they deem proper
- Periodically reviewing all policies developed the Student Government Administration and amending them by legislation if the Assembly deems it proper
- Working closely with the Executive President to assess his or her performance
Except as otherwise provided for in these Bylaws, the proceedings and administrative management of the Assembly and the various Committees shall be governed by the Standing Rules of the Assembly. The rules shall be kept and maintained to ensure that the Assembly is effective and productive in its legislative business, provides for the full and fair opportunity of the various officers of the Student Government Administration to report their recommendations and findings, and encourages the student body to attend and participate in its official business. The Standing Rules shall be maintained and revised with the concurrence of two-thirds of the Assembly.
The Executive President shall be President of the Assembly. In his or her absence from the chair, the Standing Rules shall provide for the appointment of the presiding officer.
There shall be a Speaker and an Assistant Speaker elected annually by the Assembly from among the candidates nominated by any Representative. The Speaker and Assistant Speaker shall serve for the duration of the academic year and at the pleasure of the Assembly. The Speaker shall serve as the Assembly’s primary liaison to the Executive President and shall ensure that the Assembly functions effectively and efficiently by suggesting the agenda for official meetings, coordinating unofficial meetings and programming of the Representatives, developing their cohort, and periodically assessing the progress of Assembly’s goals. The Speaker and Assistant Speaker may possess additional responsibilities as determined by the Standing Rules.
Article Two ~ Officers
The Executive President shall be GCSA’s chief executive officer, responsible for leading the administration of the Student Government. With the assistance of the Executive Vice President, he or she shall be responsible for carrying the mission statement of GCSA, directing the work of all other Officers of the administration, and representing the interests of the students to faculty, staff, college administration, the Board of Trustees, and other outside interests.
The Executive President shall ensure that the Constitution, Bylaws, and other legislation, are faithfully carried out in a manner he or she deems appropriate. He or she shall keep the Assembly informed on important matters and recommend measures he or she deems necessary and expedient. The Executive President has the authority to appoint, with the consent of the Assembly, directors of the Student Government and the principal executives of Executive Council Organizations.
The Executive Vice President shall be the principal advisor and chief assistant to the Executive President. The Executive Vice President shall be the Chair of the Executive Council, responsible for supervising the work of the Executive Council Organizations. He or she shall coordinate team building and training activities within Student Government.
The Executive President shall be assisted and advised by the following elected Officers of the Student Government Administration in order carry out the Mission of GCSA:
- There shall be an Executive Secretary who shall serve as the administrative officer for the Student Government and shall be Clerk of all GCSA records, responsible for the upkeep and publication of the Constitution, Bylaws, legislation, policies, and reports. The Executive Secretary shall also serve as Secretary for the Student Assembly.
- There shall be a Vice President for Finance who serves as the treasurer of GCSA and chief financial advisor to the Executive President. The Vice President for Finance shall faithfully execute budget management, financial policy, and strategy planning. The Vice President for Finance shall provide the Executive President and the Student Assembly all information appertaining to the finances of GCSA.
- There shall be a Vice President for Student Organizations who oversees and supports all organizations chartered by the Assembly. He or she shall coordinate all aspects of the chartering of organizations and the development and execution of policies to promote their best operation as outlined in these Bylaws.
- There shall be a Vice President for Student Life who serves as the chief advocate for student needs with respect to the wholistic student life experience, Gordon services, and applicable policies of the college. He or she shall work to develop initiatives and advocate to advance student interests.
- There shall be a Vice President for Intercultural Engagement who ensures the prioritization of systemic diversity and intercultural competency at the college. He or she shall serve as chief advocate on these matters with respect to the policies of the college and coordinate educational and recreational programming.
- There shall be a Vice President for Academic Affairs who serves as the chief advocate for student needs with respect to the academic program of the college. He or she shall work to ensure that academic resources are provided to students and shall advocate in areas of academic policy and programs when in the interests of the student body.
- There shall be a Vice President for Communications that develops and executes effective messaging and communication strategies for Student Government. He or she shall oversee all GCSA communication platforms and venues and shall advise the Executive President on messaging to the student body and the college administration.
The Executive President shall appoint, with the consent of the Assembly, various directors to assist the work of Cabinet officers. Such directors shall report to their Cabinet principal and shall serve at the pleasure of the Executive President:
- Reporting to the Vice President for Finance shall be as follows:A director to support senior class spirit through class specific programming and to facilitate a culture of philanthropy within the student body through education and fundraising opportunities;
- Two associate directors to assist in the management of financial operations.
- Reporting to the Vice President for Communications shall be two associate directors to support the strategic communication operations of the Student Government.
- Reporting to the Vice President for Student Life shall be a director to assist in planning and development of initiatives of student life nature.
Article Three ~ Committees
Standing Committees are established by these Bylaws for the purpose of considering legislation on relevant topics and working on initiatives and projects to advance the student experience.
- The Committee on Financial Affairs is charged to deliberate and consider all matters pertaining to the budget and fiscal policy of GCSA. They are entrusted to draft budget and spending bills for the effectiveness of GCSA and report them for consideration by the Student Assembly. They shall monitor the fiscal health of each aspect of the budget and recommend measures to the Student Assembly that are necessary and expedient. The Committee shall also advise the Vice President for Finance in the creation of financial policies as provided for in the Bylaws. The Committee shall be constituted by the Vice President for Finance as Chair, directors thereof, Representatives as assigned by the Assembly, and other students appointed by the Executive President.
- The Committee on Student Organizations is charged to deliberate and consider all matters pertaining to the effectiveness and performance of GCSA Student Organizations. They shall consider all proposals for new, amended, or renewed charters, or termination thereof. They shall consider and recommend to the Vice President for Student Organizations policies as provided for in these Bylaws. They shall assist and advise the Vice President for Student Organizations on initiatives and programs to better serve organizations. The Committee shall be constituted by the Vice President for Student Organizations as Chair, Representatives as assigned by the Assembly, and other students appointed by the Executive President.
- The Committee on Student Life is charged to consider and form legislation and initiatives to advance the wellbeing of Gordon students. They shall regularly review all Gordon programs and policies pertaining to the campus life experience of students. The Committee shall advise and assist the Vice President for Student Life in the forming of initiatives. The Committee shall be constituted by the Vice President for Student Life as Chair, directors thereof, Representatives as assigned by the Assembly, and other students appointed by the Executive President.
- The Committee on Intercultural Engagement is charged to consider and form initiatives and legislation to advance systemic diversity and intercultural competency at the college. There shall be a program of the Committee by the name of ALANA to carry out the Committee’s educational and recreational programming for the student body. The Committee shall administer the ALANA program with the support of the Multicultural Initiatives Office of the College. The Committee shall be constituted by the Vice President for Intercultural Engagement as Chair and students appointed by the Executive President.
- The Committee on Academic Affairs is charged to consider and form legislation and initiatives to ensure the best possible academic experience for the whole student body. They shall regularly review policies and activities pertaining to the academic program of the college. They shall also assist the Vice President for Academic Affairs on initiatives to best serve students. The Committee shall be constituted by the Vice President for Academic Affairs as Chair, Representatives as assigned by the Assembly, and other students appointed by the Executive President.
- The Committee on Communications is charged to assist the Vice President for Communications on initiatives to advance and promote Student Government initiatives. The Committee shall be constituted by the Vice President for Communications as Chair, directors thereof, Representatives as assigned by the Assembly, and other students appointed by the Executive President.
- The Committee on Gifts and Commencement is charged to foster senior spirit through class specific programming in collaboration and to facilitate a culture of philanthropy within the student body through education and fundraising opportunities. The Committee shall be chaired by the appropriate director so designated by the Executive President. The Committee shall also consist of the Senior Class Representatives, other Representatives assigned by the Assembly, and students appointed by the Executive President.
- The Committee on Elections is an independent standing committee of the Student Government. They shall ensure that fair and proper elections take place in accordance with all provisions of the Constitution and Bylaws. They shall be responsible for the keeping and producing of all documentation regarding elections and campaigns that are necessary for the execution of elections. The Committee shall be chaired by the Executive Secretary, and its membership shall include such students assigned by the Assembly. Committee membership may not include candidates for office, students otherwise involved with a student government campaign, or students related to a candidate for office.
- The Student Assembly may establish other committees from time to time that are independent in nature. This may be for the purpose of considering disciplinary or otherwise sensitive topics where impartiality and confidentiality is needed.
The Student Assembly may establish select or ad hoc committees as they deem appropriate. Such committees shall possess the committee charge and composition as granted to it by the Student Assembly.
The Executive President may establish Presidential Commissions as appropriate for advisory or planning purposes and or to assist in the execution of the Student Government administration responsibilities.
Article Four ~ Elections, Appointments, and Term of Office
The term of office for all elected and appointed offices shall be for one year, beginning on the Day after Commencement and shall end on the Day of the following Commencement.
The responsibilities and benefits of all elected offices and all information about campaigns and elections shall be well advertised to the student body by the Committee on Elections, beginning at least four weeks prior to an election. A student is eligible to run for office if he or she will be in the correct class standing for the duration of the term of office for which he or she is seeking, has enough valid student signatures from the office’s constituency, and has met academic performance criteria determined by the college’s Office of Student Life.
Signatures from ten percent of students within the respective constituency in required for all declarations for Executive President, Executive Vice President, and Class Representative candidacies. Signatures from five percent of students within the respective constituency in required for declarations for all other elected offices.
Active campaigning is only permitted once a declaration is certified by the Committee on Elections. Campaigning may not disrupt classes or other normal operations of the college. Campaigns, including the actions of any volunteers campaigning for a candidate, conducted in violation of any college policy or in interruption of the programming of the college is in violation of these By-laws.
The Spring Election shall be used to fill all elected offices for the following term, except for the office of Freshman Representative. The Spring Election shall take place within the first two weeks of April at a date and time determined by the Committee on Elections.
The Fall Election shall be used to elect the Freshman Representative. The Fall Election shall also elect any offices that were not otherwise filled by the preceding Spring Election and any special elections that have occurred since. The Fall Election shall take place within the first three weeks of the academic year coinciding with the term for which the election is fulfilling, at a date and time determined by the Committee on Elections.
Special Elections may be ordered by the Committee on Elections in any of the following cases and in the following manner:
- If the Spring Election fails to elect a simple majority of Representative offices and/or fails to elect any officer of the Cabinet, a special election may be held prior the end of the Spring Semester
- If the Fall Election fails to elect the Freshman Representative or any office not otherwise filled
- If there be an equal number of votes cast between the candidates with the highest number of votes
- If there is proposed Constitutional Amendment to be considered that is not otherwise being voted upon during the Spring or Fall Election
All elections shall be well advertised to the entire student body. The period of voting shall be open for a period of 24 hours. All races and ballot questions shall be listed on the ballot, whether written or electronic; however, voters must enjoy the right to choose which races or questions they will vote on. Unofficial results shall be released by the Committee on Elections within 24 hours after the election.
The official pronouncement of results shall be approved and attested to with certification from the Committee on Elections. Except as otherwise provided for in the case of campaign or election disputes, certification shall be done no less than five days, and no later than 10 days, after the election. Certificates of Election stating the persons elected to each office and the term for which they have been chosen, shall thereafter be attested to and published in the permanent record by the Executive Secretary.
Any complaints to challenge a campaign or the results of a race must be submitted to the Committee on Elections prior to the certification of elections. Complaints shall be adjudicated by the Committee based on the application of the Bylaws to the facts. After adjudication is had, the Committee’s judgement will be executed no less than three days afterwards, unless all parties waive the right to appeal, in which case the judgement with be affective forthwith.
Appeals from a decision of the Committee must be submitted to the Student Assembly within 3 days of the Committee’s judgement and shall be adjudicated by the Assembly under such rules they adopt. In such case, the Committee on Elections must delay execution of judgement until receiving further instructions from the Student Assembly by referral.
The Student Government administration shall ensure that all appointed offices are advertised and made available to the entire student body to apply for.
The offices of the directors in the Student Government administration, and the principal executive of each Executive Council Organization, shall be appointed by the Executive President with the consent of the Student Assembly.
If any appointed or elected office is vacant by reason of resignation, removal, or election unfulfillment, the Executive President may appoint, with the consent of the Student Assembly, a student to assume that office for the remainder of the term. Election unfulfillment is defined as the occurrence of any elected office not being filled by both the Spring and Fall Elections.
If any office of the Student Government Administration, or an appointed office among Executive Council Organizations, be vacant, the Executive President shall designate a student to carry out the functions and duties of that office. Once and if the Assembly is in session, the designation shall not be valid for more than 30 days or until a full vacancy appointment is made, whichever occurs first.
If any officer of the student government administration is temporarily unable to discharge the duties of his or her office, the Executive President shall designate a student to discharge the functions and duties of that office for up to 30 days; after which, the office shall be considered vacant.
Any member of the Student Government Administration or the Assembly may resign from office in writing to the Executive Secretary.
Article Five ~ Student Organizations
Student Organizations advance the mission of GCSA by enhancing the student life experience physically, spiritual, academically, or emotionally. Organizations are student-lead groups that are established by an Assembly-approved Student Organization Charter.
A Student Organization Charter establishes an organization, or multiple organizations under one larger organization. The Committee on Student Organizations has the responsibility to review and consider all proposals for new organizations; If the Committee approves, it shall report to the Assembly a drafted charter or an amendment to an existing charter that is appropriate for the establishment of such organization(s).
A Student Organization Charter shall contain the name of the organization, mission statement of the organization, the names and missions of any subsidiarity organizations, and the expiration date of the charter, which shall not exceed two years.
Although charters generally expire every two years, organizations that desire to remain active shall seek annual renewal of their charter every Fall. During such renewal process, each organization shall have the opportunity to seek such amendments to their charter that they deem proper. It shall be the duty of the Vice President for Student Organizations to coordinate this renewal application process. The renewal of charters, including any proposed amendments thereof, shall be at the pleasure of the Assembly.
It shall be the duty of the Committee on Student Organizations to develop policies for student organizations to ensure that organizations are faithful to their chartered mission, sufficiently engaging or serving the student body, are abiding by policies of the college, are operational, responsible with the management of funds and the use of Gordon services, are not wasteful in the stewardship of resources, are advised by a faculty or staff member of the college and keeping record of their affairs and practices. Additionally, policies may be developed for the purpose of organization evaluation or to respond to short-term emergencies.
The process for developing and amending student organization policy requires the agreement of the Committee on Student Organizations, the inclusion and concurrence of other relevant standing committees, the public release of an explained rationale for the how the changes are reasonable and advance a policymaking objective set forth in this section, and the approval of the Vice President for Student Organizations.
Article VI ~ Executive Council
There shall be an Executive Council that collectively serves the student body by providing essential services and programming in the form of various Executive Council Organizations. The Council convenes to provide an avenue for collaboration between such organizations that provide essential services to the student body. This also provides the Executive Vice President an avenue to supervise and ensure the proper operation of each organization.
The Executive Council shall consist of the Executive Vice President as Chair and the principal executive of each Executive Council Organization. The Vice President for Finance shall also serve on the Executive Council periodically as an ex-officio member.
Executive Council Organizations shall be formed by an Assembly-adopted Executive Council Charter. Proposed charters shall be considered by the Executive Council, and, if approved, may be reported to the Assembly for consideration and adoption. This may be done by either adopting a new Executive Council Charter or by amending an existing Student Organization Charter as an Executive Council Organization. Charters shall contain the name of the organization, the mission statement, and the division type for which the organization shall belong to.
There shall be three divisions among the Executive Council Organizations. They shall include Agencies, Councils, and Publications.
- Agencies engage with the student body directly by providing a form of service to them
- Councils serve the student body by working towards a set of objectives that enhance the campus experience
- Publications provide the student body with quality student journalism, writing, or art.
Article VII ~ Administration and Finance
There shall be an Administrative Handbook that provides both guidance and policy for the execution of Student Government offices, operations, and other areas of GCSA. It shall include as follows:
- Information about GCSA’s mission, structure, and history, shall be kept and maintained by the Executive President with the advice of his or her Cabinet.
- Position guidance, job descriptions, and procedures for each office within the Student Government shall be provided. The Executive President, with the advice of his or her Cabinet, shall make amendments from time to time as deemed appropriate.
- Policies for Student Organizations and Executive Council Organizations that are duly approved by the appropriate officers and committees shall be included.
- Policies on practices, expectations, and conduct for officers of the Student Government administration shall be provided. The Executive President, with the advice of his or her Cabinet, may make amendments from time to time.
All provisions within the Administrative Handbook must be consistent with by Constitution and Bylaws and yield their authority thereto. All amendments must be published in the public record and the Assembly shall be informed any time a revision is made. The Administrative Handbook may also be amended by legislation of the Assembly.
As affirmed in the Constitution and these Bylaws, the Student Assembly exercises general control of all GCSA funds by approving an annual budget and periodically making amendments thereto. Except as otherwise provided for, the Vice President for Finance is generally bound by the budget and no funding shall be drawn from GCSA accounts unless it is consistent with what has been authorized for in the budget.
The fiscal year shall begin on July 1 and end on June 30, in accordance with the fiscal year of the college.
Before the end of each academic year, the Assembly shall approve the Annual Budget for the upcoming fiscal year. The initial drafting of the Annual Budget shall be the responsibility of the Committee on Financial Affairs, which shall provide every Student Organization and Executive Council Organization the ability to apply for funding. The Committee’s process shall be deliberate and transparent. Once a draft is approved by the Committee on Financial Affairs, it shall be reported to the Assembly for further consideration, amendments, and approval.
At the end of the academic year, remaining funds in the fiscal year budget that is unspent and not otherwise appropriated for specific use shall be allocated for spending by the Executive President on such projects and initiatives that are in the best interests of GCSA and the student body.
Article VIII ~ Disciplinary Matters
Disciplinary action by the expulsion process or impeachment process is a serious matter to be handled with the highest discretion. Causes for disciplinary action shall include, but is not limited to:
- Consistent or serious failure to uphold official responsibilities
- Serious violations of the Student Life Handbook or other college policies
- Serious violations of the Constitution, Bylaws, other legislation, or duly ratified policies
- Obstruction of the work of a Student Government body or committee
- Abuse of power
When misconduct arises, the inquiring parties shall consult with the alleged offender and the Student Government Staff Advisor to consider whether informal methods of reconciliation are appropriate instead of perusing official disciplinary action.
The duty to expel Representatives that commit violations shall be carefully exercised by the Assembly. As such, at the decision of the Assembly, or by order of the Speaker, an independent committee shall be appointed to deliberate and investigate an alleged violation. The committee so named shall consist of the Speaker (unless he or she is in question) and other students. The Executive President and Executive Vice President shall serve as ex-officio non-voting members.
If the committee so named deems it appropriate for the Assembly to expel the Representative in question, the Committee shall exhibit Articles of Expulsion to the Assembly. Consideration of the articles shall be adjudicated by the Assembly under such procedures adopted under the Standing Rules of the Assembly. Pursuant to the Constitution, the concurrence of two-thirds of the Assembly is required to expel.
The duty to impeach officers that commit violations is a Constitutional responsibility to be carefully exercised as these Bylaws determine. As such, at the decision of the Assembly, or by order of the Speaker, an independent committee shall be appointed to deliberate and investigate an alleged violation. The committee so named shall consist of the Speaker and other students.
If the committee so named deems it appropriate for the impeachment to proceed, the Committee shall exhibit Articles of Impeachment to the Assembly. The Assembly shall hold a fair trial on all articles and shall do so under such procedures adopted under the Standing Rules of the Assembly. Pursuant to the Constitution, the concurrence of two-thirds of the Assembly is required to convict on any article and removal from office shall be effective immediately thereafter.
Article IX ~ Execution and Amendments to the Bylaws
These Bylaws shall govern the affairs of the Gordon College Student Association except when two-thirds of the Assembly resolve to the contrary.
These Bylaws may be amended with the concurrence of two-thirds of the Assembly. All resolutions to amend the Bylaws, whether introduced in the Assembly or reported by a committee, may not be adopted until the following meeting of the Assembly.