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New Groups

Procedure for Recognition

  1. Collect a membership list of at least 10 members or a petition of 100 students who support the existence of the organization. For sports clubs, a list of at least 10 members must be submitted to the Recreational Sports Office.
  1. Submit a letter to the Constitution Chairperson of the Student Assembly demonstrating that this organization is ready to meet the following criteria:
    1. A. Clear evidence that this group is necessary as a student organization at Keene State College.
    2. B. Proof that this group could not make use of any existing organization similar in composition and purpose. It is strongly recommended that all sports clubs affiliate with national organizations/associations.
    3. C. If this organization intends to apply for funding from the Student Activity Fee, it must:
      1. be a nonprofit organization
      2. be open to all Keene State College students
      3. not discriminate on basis of sex, ethnic or national origin, age, religion, political affiliation, veteran or disability status
      4. allow each student member of the organization or club to have one vote in the election of all organization or club officers. This does not preclude the formation of a nominating committee for positions that may require a certain amount of expertise. Any criteria for nomination shall be clearly objective, justifiable, and included in the organization's constitution (ratified by its members and the Student Assembly). Organization officers include, but are not limited to: President, Vice President, and Treasurer, or their equivalent. For a more detailed explanation, look at the Student Activity Fee Policy, on file in the Student Government Office.
    4. The name and address of a Keene State College faculty or staff member who is willing to be an advisor for this organization. Every student organization is required to have at least one advisor who serves as an ex-officio member of that group.
  1. Draft a Constitution according to Robert's Rules of Order and the supplemental rules of the Student Government. Submit this draft to the Chairperson of the Constitution Committee of the Student Assembly for review, at least three weeks prior to final review by the Student Assembly. If this group is to be a local chapter of a larger, national organization, the bylaws of this parent organization must accompany the constitution, as well as any additional material which would better explain the organization. Club sports must gain approval from the Recreational Sports Office prior to submitting their constitution to the Student Assembly.
  1. Upon review, the Constitution Chairperson will present the constitution to the Assembly for passage, along with a recommendation for or against acceptance.
  1. Upon approval of the constitution by the Student Assembly, the Student Center Administrative Office requires the submission of the "New Student Organization Information Sheet". This should be turned into the Director of Student Involvement within 3 days of official recognition.
  1. Upon approval of the constitution by the Student Assembly, the organization must exist for a period of fourteen (14) academic weeks as an active organization. Academic weeks are the periods of time from Monday to Friday during the Fall and Spring Semesters. After such time, they are eligible to submit a budget to the Finance Committee of the Student Assembly. "Active Organization" shall be defined by the purpose of the organization as stated in their constitution and by the policies of the Student Assembly.
    1. Active student organization defined:
      1. An active student organization is required to have at least 10 active members (10 also for a sports club), or a petition supporting the organization's existence signed by 100 students of the College. Note: Definition of an Active Member is a student who attends and participates in at least 50% of your activities/meetings.
      2. This organization or club sport must have regularly scheduled meetings at least once a month.
      3. It must submit a list of active members to the Student Assembly Constitution Committee, and the Recreational Sports Office for sports clubs, at least once a month.
      4. It must comply with the requirements set forth by the Student Assembly Treasurer regarding monthly and quarterly reports.
      5. Sports clubs must also comply with all Recreational Sports requirements.
    2. Inactive student organization defined:
      1. A student organization shall be considered inactive when any ONE (or more) of the conditions set forth in (a. 1-4) above is not met for a period of three academic semesters or 42 academic weeks (if period starts mid-semester).
      2. The Student Assembly Constitution Committee shall have the responsibility of reviewing evidence for the purpose of declaring an organization inactive, to include any evidence presented by the organization under consideration.
      3. Upon classification as an inactive student organization, all organization funds shall be transferred to the Student Government Contingency Account.
    3. Reactivating process: In order for an organization declared inactive to reactivate, the same process must be followed as if it were a new student organization, to include the probationary period without Student Assembly funding.
    4. Student Organizations NOT receiving funds are exempt from these provisions.
  1. If the proposed constitution is not approved by the Student Assembly, it may be resubmitted to the Constitution Committee for further examination.
  1. Upon recognition, the organization must meet the following specific criteria:
    1. Limit voting membership to the students of Keene State College.
    2. Non-voting members may be Keene State College faculty, staff, or members outside the college community.
    3. Maintain a membership composed of at least 75 percent students.
    4. Executive board officers must maintain a grade point average of 2.0 or higher and be in good standing with the College.
    5. Sustain an active membership of at least 10 members. Submit a list of all members (active and inactive) to the Student Assembly with the quarterly financial reports.
    6. Retain a Keene State College faculty or staff member as an advisor.
    7. Submit all changes in constitution and by-laws to the Student Assembly two weeks after the ratification by the active membership.
    8. Submit all financial and monthly activity reports to the Treasurer of the Student Assembly on time. Copies will be on file in the Student Government Office.
    9. All officer and membership rosters are to be submitted at the beginning of each semester to the Student Center Administrative Office. If any or all of these conditions are not met, the Student Assembly shall be empowered to suspend recognition of a student organization and the accompanying privileges, as stated in their constitution and Keene State College policies. Any existing organization in violation of the requirements for recognition has 24 academic days in which to rectify violations after written notification from the Constitution Committee. This grace period may be extended by the Constitution Committee for an additional 12 academic days, for a total of 36 academic days, in cases of extenuating circumstances. Academic days occur in the regular Fall and Spring semesters of the academic year.
  1. Organizations not in compliance with College policies and procedures will go through a judicial process, which could result in a warning, probation, suspension, or disaffiliation.
    1. Administrative Warning. The administrative warning is issued to an organization when it has violated a minor component of the Relationship Statement, failed to comply with any administrative requirements/acts issued by the Director of Student Involvement or engaged in a behavior which negatively affects the reputation of the College. Normally, an organization will receive no more than one administrative warning per academic year before the imposition of penalties; organizations under any previous administrative sanctions may be subject to penalties without a warning.
    2. Administrative Probation. Administrative probation indicates that an organization is not in good standing with the College for a specific period of time. During the probationary period, any other violation of the Relationship Statement, act of non-compliance, or behavior that negatively affects the reputation of the College may result in more serious sanctions (i.e., suspension or disaffiliation).
    3. Suspension. Suspension indicates that an organization, by its own actions, has forfeited the privilege of being a Recognized Student Organization. Some, or all, privileges bestowed by the College to a Recognized Student Organization will be suspended until such time as the suspension period has ended.
    4. Disaffiliation. Disaffiliation indicates that an organization's status as a Recognized Student Organization has been discontinued completely. All privileges provided to a Recognized Student Organization are forfeited. Disaffiliation may be issued permanently, or an organization may be permitted to re-apply for recognition after a period of time no less than five years. (See the College Judicial Code in the Student Handbook.)
  1. There shall not be more than one officially recognized student group whose function and purpose distinguishes it from other groups at Keene State College. Each student organization shall have a function and purpose which distinguish it from all other groups at Keene State College.
  1. A recognized student organization may use the name of the College, insofar as it is affiliated with a unit of the College. Such a group may refer to itself as the "Keene State College (name of the group)."
  1. Keene State College does not accept responsibility for the independent, private, or unofficial activities of a recognized student organization.
  1. While recognition is a requirement for application for funds from Student Activity Fee, it is not an entitlement. Student Government may develop additional criteria beyond recognition for such allocations.

Constitution Format

Article I: Name
State what the organization will be called.

Article II: Purpose
State what the organization will do to fulfill the needs of the individuals who may join. Do not be general or too specific. EXAMPLE: The purpose of_______is to broaden the horizons of intellectual reasoning through reading, writing, and studying various published works.

Article III: Membership
State who will be allowed in the organization and how they will be admitted, i.e. pledging or attending a specific number of meetings. There should be a section on who will have voting privileges while in the organization. Voting privileges are for Keene State College students.

Article IV: Officers
State what positions are to be filled by the active members such as president, vice president, secretary and treasurer. State what each person must do while holding this position. Officers must maintain a 2.0 GPA during the majority of term served (more than a semester).

Article V: Elections
Indicate what time of the year elections will occur and who is eligible to run for office. Indicate what will happen in case of a tie or resignation from office, such as a special election at the next regular meeting or some other time.

Article VI: Meetings
State when this organization will have its regularly scheduled meeting such as once a week, once a year, etc. Include a section on what type of quorum will be needed to conduct business i.e. two-thirds of active members, majority of those in attendance, etc. State if special meetings are allowed and by whom they will be arranged. State if meetings are to be run by Robert's Rules of Order.

Article VII: Finances
State if the members are required to pay dues or if the organization requests to be funded by the Student Government, and that you will follow the Financial Policies and Procedures of the Student Assembly and Student Center Office.

Article VIII: Recall
State whether or not a person can be expelled from the group by meeting specific criteria such as not paying dues, etc.

Article IX: Amendments
The organization can only accept amendments if there has been precious notice of such changes and if there is a two-thirds majority vote in favor of the amendment. Any amendment must also be approved by the Student Assembly. Include at this time, any information other than what has been stated which you feel is important to this organization such as standing committees, etc.

Article X: Ratification
State the manner in which the Constitution shall be ratified.

Bylaws

An organization is not required to establish bylaws. If your organization wishes to draw up bylaws, here are some guidelines:

  1. Detailed material concerning members, that is rights, duties, resignation and expulsion procedures. Provisions for honorary or associate members or honorary officers if the group so desires.
  2. Provision for initiation fees, if any dues and assessments should be covered here, also details regarding delinquencies.
  3. Time and method of electing officers and duties of the officers (if you have this in the bylaws, you need only include a list of the officers and terms of office in the constitution).
  4. Duties, authority, and responsibilities of an executive committee.
  5. The names of the standing committees and the method of choosing the chairperson and committee members. The duties of the committee should also be stated.
  6. A provision for some accepted rules of order or parliamentary manual as Robert's Rules of Order, Revised.
  7. The number or proportion of the group constituting a quorum.
  8. A method to amend the bylaws, usually a majority vote. Amending the constitution should not be too simple a process, for the sake of stability of the group. It should be possible to amend the bylaws with greater ease. The constitution should always carry the date it was last revised. It is a good idea to insert in parentheses after an amendment the date it was passed.

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