Constitution of CSters
CSters: Women in Computer Science Constitution
Last Revised September 6, 2015
Article I. Name and Purpose
Section I.A. Name. The name of this organization shall be CSters: Women in Computer Science, abbreviated CSters.
Section I.B. Mission Statement. Our mission is to encourage and empower young women interested in Computer Science. We will fulfill our goals by developing a strong network for our members and connecting them to fellow students, staff, and professional role models in industry and academia.
To develop this network, we will allocate all resources to organizing a diverse range of programs and events. Such events will include but are not limited to, the annual Grace Hopper Celebration conference, student presentations on career and graduate school, professional company presentations and info sessions, and academic mentoring events.
Section I.C. Purpose. The purpose of this organization shall be:
I.C.1. To foster a community around undergraduate, graduate, prospective student, alumni, and/or professional women interested in Computer Science;
I.C.2. To organize social events to bring fellow students closer together in the community;
I.C.3. To organize mentoring events that connect and bond inexperienced students with experienced mentors;
I.C.4. To make partnerships with various organizations in the Houston, national, and international community to further expand opportunities for students to interact with industry professionals for career development and mentorship;
Article II. Membership
Section II.A. Enrollment:
II.A.1. Student Members. All currently registered students at Rice University shall be eligible for student membership. Student membership shall be granted to any eligible person who submits a completed member information form to the Secretary.
Section II.B. Removal
II.B.1. Grounds for Removal. Any of the following shall constitute grounds for removal of membership:
II.B.1.a. Conduct injurious to the organization and its mission, where injurious conduct is any conduct tending to injure the good name of the organization, disturb its well being, or hamper it in its work;
II.B.1.b. Conduct unbecoming a member of the organization; and
II.B.1.c. Ineligibility for membership according to the requirements of this organization, the Student Association, and/or Rice University, whichever are applicable.
II.B.2. Process for Removal. If an officer or the sponsor of the organization has reason to believe a member has acted in a manner warranting removal under Section II.B.1, the member may be called before the officers and sponsor in a closed meeting. After hearing the alleged grounds for removal and the member’s response, the officers may remove the member by a majority vote. The Internal President shall notify the member of the decision in writing within 48 hours.
Article III. Officers
Section III.A. Definition. The officers of this organization shall be an Internal President, External President, Treasurer, Secretary, and 3 Social Chairs.
Section III.B. Executive Committee
III.B.1. Definition. The officers shall constitute the Executive Committee.
III.B.2. Authority. The Executive Committee shall have general supervision of the affairs of the organization between its regular meetings, make recommendations to the membership, and perform any other duties listed in this constitution. The Executive Committee shall be subject to the orders of this organization, and none of its acts or omissions shall conflict with action taken by this organization. Accordingly, the Executive Committee shall be authorized to spend this organization’s funds.
III.B.3. Meetings. The Executive Committee shall select its own time and place of meeting. A special meeting may be called by the Internal President or the External President. Upon the request of two other officers, the Internal President shall be obligated to call a special meeting.
Section III.C. Duties of Officers
III.C.1. The Internal President shall:
III.C.1.a. Oversee all meetings and activities of the organization;
III.C.1.b. Chair all meetings of the membership and of the Executive Committee;
III.C.1.c. Coordinate all responsibilities of the Executive Committee;
III.C.1.d. Ensure the organization abides by the rules and regulations of the Student Association and of Rice University at all times;
III.C.1.e. Keep faculty sponsors and advisors up to date with club activities;
III.C.2.f. Submit all required forms to the Student Association and the Office of Student
Activities by their respective deadlines;
III.C.2. The External President shall:
III.C.1.a. Have the authority to perform all Internal Presidential responsibilities
alongside or instead of the Internal President
III.C.1.b. Perform as head of external communications with industry for all interaction. Such interaction includes, but is not limited to: sponsorship for the annual Grace Hopper Celebration Conference, industry lunch talks, and industry mentorship trips.
III.C.3. The Treasurer shall:
III.C.3.a. Manage this organization’s funds;
III.C.3.b. Maintain a correct balance of this organization’s funds;
III.C.3.c. Present a budget to the membership no later than September 1;
III.C.3.e. Make available, at the request of any member, the Student Association, or Rice University, a current breakdown of the organization’s income and expenses;
III.C.3.f. Process and facilitate refunds as deemed necessary and appropriate by the faculty sponsor and executive committee;
III.C.3.g. Present the state of the budget at each Executive meeting.
III.C.4. The Secretary shall:
III.C.4.a. Take minutes at all meetings of the membership and of the Executive
III.C.4.b. Distribute minutes to the membership or the officers in a timely manner;
III.C.4.c. Maintain the membership list, any mailing lists, and the organization’s website;
III.C.4.d. Accept membership information forms from new members; and
III.C.5. The Socials Chairs (3) shall:
III.C.4.a. Plan and organize all social events for the club;
III.C.4.b. Photograph events and meetings for Posters/History.
Section III.D. Eligibility. Only student members who are not on Disciplinary Probation or otherwise prohibited from holding office in a registered student organization shall be eligible to seek and hold office. No member may hold more than one office at a time. No member may be elected to the same office more than twice in a row.
Section III.E. Selection. Officers shall be elected in accordance with Article V (Voting) at a regular meeting.
Section III.F. Term. Officers shall serve until their replacement, removal, or resignation.
Section III.G. Removal
III.G.1. Grounds for Removal. Any of the following shall constitute grounds for removal from office:
III.G.1.a. Failure to satisfactorily fulfill the duties of the office;
III.G.1.b. Conduct injurious to the organization and its mission, where injurious conduct is any conduct tending to injure the good name of the organization, disturb its well being, or hamper it in its work;
III.G.1.c. Conduct unbecoming of a member of the organization;
III.G.1.d. Ineligibility for membership according to the requirements of this organization, the Student Association, and/or Rice University, whichever are applicable;
III.G.1.e. Violation of Rice University rules or regulations, including the Code of
Student Conduct and the Rice Alcohol Policy, where the violation occurs in the course of fulfilling the duties of the office, and where the member has been found in violation by an appropriate judicial body or official.
III.G.2. Process for Removal. An officer may be removed through either of the following processes:
III.G.2.a. Upon receipt of a petition of at least 20 percent of the voting members of the organization, the President shall be required to schedule a recall election to be conducted between 48 hours and two weeks from the time of receipt. A two-thirds vote of voting members present is required to remove an officer in a recall election.
III.G.2.b. If an officer or the sponsor of the organization has reason to believe an officer has acted in a manner warranting removal under Section III.E.1, the officer may be called before the other officers and sponsor in a closed meeting. After hearing the alleged grounds for removal and the officer’s response, the other officers may remove the member by a unanimous vote. The Internal President shall notify the member of the decision in writing within 24 hours.
Section III.H. Vacancies. In the case of a vacancy for any office, the Executive Committee shall call a special election to be conducted between 48 hours and two weeks from the time of vacancy.
Article IV. Meetings
Section IV.A. Regular Meetings. Regular meetings of this organization shall be held at a time and place that is convenient for the membership. The membership may, at its discretion, change the time or place of meeting. Regular meetings shall be held at least monthly. The Presidents or Secretary shall send a reminder to the membership via appropriate means between 24 and 48 hours in advance of each regular meeting.
Section IV.B. Special Meetings. Special meetings may be called by the Internal President, External President, or the Executive Committee. The President shall be obligated to call a special meeting upon the written petition of at least 10 percent of the student members. The purpose of the meeting shall be stated in the call. At least 48 hours’ notice must be given for special meetings.
Section IV.C. Quorum. Fifteen percent of the student members shall constitute a quorum for all purposes under this constitution.
Section IV.D. Attendance. Officers are expected to attend all meetings.
Article V. Voting
Section V.A. Voting Members. Voting members shall be all eligible student members who have attended at least one event or meeting prior to the voting period.
Section V.B. Threshold. Except where otherwise noted, any matter put to a vote shall be decided by a majority of voting members present.
Section V.C. General Elections. Elections shall be held annually in the spring semester for all officer positions. A majority of voting members present shall be required to elect an officer.
Preferential ballots shall be used in all officer elections involving more than two candidates. If no candidate receives a majority of the first-preference votes, a preferential method shall be used to determine the winner.
V.C.1. The general election must be held at a regular meeting with at least one week’s notice that general elections are to be held.
Section V.D. Special Elections. Special elections shall be held in the same manner as general elections, except that they may be held at a special meeting when appropriate.
Article VI. Finances
Section VI.A. Budget. The Treasurer shall prepare a proposed budget by September 1 of each year. The budget may be approved or amended only by a majority vote of voting members present at a general meeting with at least 48 hours’ notice.
Section VI.B. Club Funds. All funds gathered by the organization must be deposited into a club account with the Computer Science Department within three business days of their receipt.
Section VI.C. Misuse of Funds. The sponsor shall refer to the relevant University office(s) for any member reasonably suspected of spending club funds without authority, failing to deposit club funds appropriately, or otherwise misusing or abusing club funds.
Article VII. Sponsor
Section VII.A. Requirement. The organization must have a sponsor who is a member of the Rice faculty or staff and who plans to be at Rice for the full academic year.
Section VII.B. Selection. The sponsor shall be selected at a regular meeting by a majority vote of voting members present.
Section VII.C. Term. The sponsor shall serve until his or her resignation or replacement.
Section VII.D. Training. The sponsor must meet the training criteria set by the Office of Student Activities by the deadline determined by that office.
Section VII.E. Replacement. If the sponsor resigns, is replaced, or is otherwise unable to continue serving as the sponsor for the remainder of the academic year, the organization shall select a new sponsor and notify the Office of Student Activities of the change within 15 class days.
Article VIII. Parliamentary Authority
Section VIII.A. The rules contained in the current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised shall govern this organization in all cases to which they are applicable and in which they are not inconsistent with this constitution and any special rules of order this organization may adopt.
Article IX. General Policies and Regulations
Section IX.A. Nondiscrimination Policy. This organization shall not discriminate against individuals on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, ancestry, age, disability, or veteran status.
Section IX.B. Anti-Hazing Policy. This organization shall not engage in any form of hazing, as defined by the Code of Student Conduct and any other applicable Rice University rules and regulations.
Section IX.C. Conflict of Interest Policy. The business of this organization shall not be conducted in any manner that creates a conflict of interest or the reasonable appearance thereof.
Section IX.D. Approval of Contracts. No commitments or contracts shall be made by any member of this organization on behalf of this organization without the approval of both the sponsor and a majority vote of the Executive Committee.
Section IX.E. Interpretation of this Constitution. This document shall be interpreted based on the letter, the spirit, and the intent of any provision(s) in question, with reference to appropriate archival documents to provide insight into the intent or spirit of a provision where relevant. Article and section titles are intended to aid in reading and interpreting the document but shall not be construed as binding upon or limiting the content of their respective articles and sections. Where a general statement and a specific statement appear to be contradictory, the specific statement shall be taken as a binding exception to the general statement.
Article X. Primacy of the Student Association
Section X.A. This organization shall recognize the primacy of the Student Association Executive Branch, the Student Senate, and ultimately, the Student Association.
Section X.B. This organization shall be bound by the requirements of the Constitution of the Student Association and any associated rules and regulations.
Section X.C. This constitution and any bylaws or policies adopted by this organization are subordinate to the Constitution of the Student Association.
Article XI. Amendments
Section XI.A. Approval by Membership. Proposed amendments to this constitution may be approved by the membership only by a three-fourths vote of voting members present with at least one week’s prior notice.
Section XI.B. Approval by Student Association Parliamentarian. Amendments approved by the membership shall be submitted to the Student Association Parliamentarian. Amendments may not take effect until they are approved by the Parliamentarian or the Student Senate in accordance with the Constitution of the Student Association. The Date of Last Revision on the title page of this constitution shall be updated to reflect the date of approval by the Parliamentarian or Senate.