BioEngineering Graduate Association Constitution & By-Laws

Constitution for the BioEngineering Graduate Association at Georgia Tech

Created August 8, 2014
Revised December 9, 2014
Ratified December 15, 2014

Article I. Name

Section 1. This organization will be known as the BioEngineering Graduate Association at Georgia Tech, hereafter referred to as BGA.

Article II. Purpose

Section 1. The purpose of BGA is to:

A. Provide input to the Director of the Interdisciplinary BioEngineering Graduate Program (hereafter referred to as BioE) regarding both the broad issues that affect BioE students and matters that have the potential to enhance the interface between BioE students, program faculty, and administration.

B. Organize student activities that enhance the sense of BioE student identity.

Article III. Membership

Section 1. Members of BGA must be full-time graduate students in the Georgia Tech Interdisciplinary BioEngineering Graduate Program who meet the eligibility requirements for participation in extracurricular activities, as stated in the GT Catalog and SGA policies. Only Georgia Tech students can vote or hold office.

Section 2. Associate members may be GT faculty, staff, or alumni, their spouses or domestic partners, and spouses or domestic partners of student members. Associate members may not vote or hold office.

Section 3. There will be no maximum number of members.

Section 4. Membership will take effect when an interested party pays all dues set for the semester.

Article IV. Officers

Section 1. According to the GT catalog, students can only run for and hold office if they are in good standing with the Institute (academically and non-academically).

Section 2. An Executive Board comprised of Officers will govern the activities of the organization, and the specific duties of the Officers will be as follows:

A. President: The President will be the executive officer of the Executive Board and will have general supervision of the affairs of BGA and will preside at all meetings. The President will represent the organization at conferences, conventions, and faculty or alumni meetings.

B. Academic Chair: The Academic Chair will organize a series of sessions each year to prepare students for the annual BioE qualifying exams.

C. Events Chair: The Events Chair will organize on-campus social events to facilitate networking and enhance the sense of BioE student community.

D. Outreach Chair: The Outreach Chair will organize community service events for the members of BGA.

E. Publicity Chair: The Publicity Chair will advertise BGA events.

F. Social Chair: The Social Chair will organize off-campus social events to facilitate networking and enhance the sense of BioE student community.

G. Secretary: The Secretary will maintain the membership roster and record and distribute meeting minutes.

H. Treasurer: The Treasurer will maintain records of all revenue and expenditures and ensure that generally accepted accounting practices and monetary controls are in place. The Treasurer will collect dues.

Section 3. Limitations to terms of service are to be found in the BGA Bylaws.

Article V. Officer Elections

Section 1. The elections for officers for the forthcoming year will take place in the Fall semester no later than one month before finals.

Section 2. Election timeline and nomination processes must be announced to members at least two weeks prior to the elections meeting.

Section 3. Any student member may campaign or be nominated for any position on the Executive Board. The candidate names will be distributed to organization members at least 24 hours prior to the election meeting.

Section 4. The candidate for each office receiving a majority vote of members at the elections meeting will be considered the victor. If no candidate receives a majority vote, then there will be a run-off between the two candidates with the most votes. The candidate who receives the most votes will be the victor. If there is a tie, the highest ranking outgoing officer not involved in the run-off will make the final decision. No member can be elected to more than one position on the Executive Board at one time.

Section 5. New officers take office at the last meeting of the Fall semester and remain in office for one year.

Section 6. If a position remains unfilled after the elections process, the President will appoint a member to the position or re-assign the duties to another officer.

Article VI. Officer Removal

Section 1. If an officer fails to maintain Institute requirements as stated in the GT Catalog and Article IV.Section 1, he or she shall resign immediately.

Section 2. If it is believed that an officer is not fulfilling his or her constitutional duties, then a petition requesting his or her removal must be signed by at least half of the voting membership or Executive Board and presented at a general meeting or Executive Board meeting depending on the origin of the petition. Then, upon verification of the validity of the petition, by the Advisor, and, at least two weeks but no more than four weeks from the date of submission, another meeting shall be held at which the grievance will be presented, with both sides having the opportunity to present a case.

Section 3. The Advisor, if appropriate, shall preside over the removal hearing. After all arguments have been heard, a secret ballot vote shall be held. If at least two-thirds of the voting members present vote for removal, the officer shall be removed immediately.

Section 4. If the President is removed or resigns, the interim President will be selected from among the current Executive Board based on majority vote of the current Executive Board. All other officers will be nominated by the membership and voted on in accordance with Article V at the next meeting. In this case, the victor will take office immediately following election and will fulfill the term of the officer that he or she is fulfilling.

Article VII. Special Committees

Section 1. Special Committees may be created as necessary by the President for specific events and projects not to last longer than the current officer term.

Section 2. Each Special Committee will have a chair, as appointed by the President.

Section 3. Any member or Officer may be selected as a Special Committee chair.

Section 4. Any number of members may be on a Special Committee.

Article VIII. Advisor

Section 1. A full-time GT faculty or staff member will serve as Advisor to the organization.

Section 2. Nominations for Advisor will take place within the Executive Board. An Advisor will be chosen within two weeks of a vacancy. The Executive Board will choose the Advisor by a majority vote and invite him/her to serve as Advisor for the next academic year.

Section 3. During officer elections, the organization will vote on whether to continue the Advisor appointment or not. The vote must be a majority of those voting in order to retain the Advisor for the next academic year.

Section 4. The duties of the Advisor include: meeting with the organization officers, reviewing the yearly budget, signing all required paperwork, and advising on issues of risk management, organization leadership, and Georgia Tech policy.

Section 5. The Advisor can be removed for not carrying out the duties and expectations as defined in this document. Any member can bring concerns to the Executive Board. The Executive Board will meet with the Advisor to discuss the concerns. After this meeting, the Executive Board will vote on whether to remove the Advisor. If there is a majority vote, then the Advisor will be removed.

Section 6. If an Advisor steps down, is removed, or is not re-appointed, the Executive Board will follow the process stated in Article VIII.Section 2.

Article IX. Dues

Section 1. Dues will be determined at the beginning of the year by a majority vote of the Executive Board but will not be less than the required amount designated by the Student Government Association Joint Finance Committee Policy. Dues are to be paid by the third week of the semester or by the second week of membership.

Article X. Parliamentary Procedure

Section 1. Robert’s Rules of Order will be used in instances not covered in this constitution.

Article XI. Bylaws

Section 1. Bylaws will be attached to the constitution to add specificity to the constitutional articles.

Section 2. In the event of a conflict between the constitution and the bylaws, the constitution will be the guiding document.

Section 3. The bylaws may be modified by a majority vote of the Executive Board.

Article XII. Constitutional Amendments

Section 1. Amendments to the constitution shall be submitted by members of this organization to the Executive Board in writing for consideration.

Section 2. Written notification of the proposed amendment must be made to all voting members by mail or email at least two weeks in advance of any vote on changes to the constitution.

Section 3. A two-thirds vote of present members will be required for adoption.

Section 4. Amendments are subject to the approval of the Student Government Association and the Student Activities Committee.


Bylaws for the BioEngineering Graduate Association at Georgia Tech

Created September 22, 2014
Revised December 9, 2014
Ratified December 15, 2014

Article I.Executive Board Term Length

Section 1. Members may serve on the Executive Board for up to two years, except for the President, who may serve as President for up two years, regardless of previous membership on the Executive Board.