GBB Constitution

 

If you have any questions regarding the Constitution, please contact the GBB Executive Board at gbb@barnard.edu.

 

We the members of the Governing Board at Barnard recognize this Constitution as the governing document intended to make clear the purposes, structures, and powers of this board.

 

Preamble

Article I: Purpose

Article II: Board Membership

Article III: Membership in the GBB

Article IV:  Stages of Club Recognition  

Article V: Stage 1 Club Recognition   

Article VI: Stage 2 Club Recognition Procedure

Article VII. Club Registration Procedure 

Article VIII. Club Guidelines and Standards 

Article IX: Club Probation 

Article X: Club Derecognition

Article XI: Electing, Appointing, and Removing GBB Board Members 

Article XII: Amendments to the Constitution

 

Preamble

This Constitution will serve as the guiding principle of the Governing Board at Barnard, hereafter referred to as GBB, in order to ensure the fair governance of all groups that fall under it and the responsible allocation of student activity fees.

Article I. Purpose

GBB is dedicated to recognizing, representing, and advocating for student clubs and organizations at Barnard College. GBB operates on behalf of the undergraduate student councils and governing boards whose functions do not fall under any other governing boards unless dually recognized. GBB serves the following five purposes:

1. Serving and representing the interests of its groups;

2. Enhancing the mission of Barnard College by supporting student organizations that foster and enrich the community;

3. Allocating funding and providing financial resources to groups;

4. Facilitating the creation and maintenance of spaces in the Barnard community for underrepresented identities and marginalized social groups;

5. Collaborating with the Student Life office as well as the other governing boards of Columbia University to maximize campus opportunities and events for the greater student body.

Article II. Board Membership

Section 1 – Executive Board

The GBB Executive Board shall consist of the following officers:

Clause 1. Executive Chair, whose powers and responsibilities include managing all external relations, working on behalf of the clubs with all members of the administration, cooperating with the other members of the Student Leadership Collective and the other governing boards, presenting a budget outline at F@CU, making policy changes to better serve the needs of all clubs, and setting the agenda for weekly board meetings

Clause 2. Vice Chair, whose responsibilities include being responsible for reviewing and amending the Constitution whenever necessary, managing the recognition and derecognition of clubs, monitoring club activities and status, and overseeing all town hall meetings

Clause 3. Finance Chair, whose responsibilities include overseeing club spending, managing all co-sponsorships, sending and receiving allocation packets in the spring semester, maintaining GBB’s internal budget, attending and presenting a budget outline at F@CU, and receiving and consolidating monthly finance reports from General Representatives on each club’s finances.

Clause 4. Assistant Finance Chair, whose responsibilities include co-managing financial documents with the Finance Chair, including overseeing co-sponsorship applications and assisting at F@CU.

Clause 5. Communications Chair, whose responsibilities include website maintenance, sending out bi-weekly newsletters, managing all social media sources on behalf of the board, advertising and promoting on behalf of GBB, and promoting all clubs and activities.

Clause 6. Representatives for general body (4 total), whose responsibilities include acting as liaisons to clubs (cultural, publications, performances, special interest, pre-professional), assisting with communications & publicity (website, newsletter, etc.),  bringing GBB’s attention to shared needs/concerns of clubs, and facilitating clubs’ financial organization by collecting club financial information at the end of every month and submitting it to the Finance Chair.

Clause 6. Programming Coordinator, whose responsibilities include organizing Town Hall and elections, booking space for SLC and special events, and assisting with Club ReFUEL

Clause 7. Inter-Collegiate Coordinator, whose responsibilities include acting as a liaison to inter-board events,representing GBB on inter-collegiate committees pertaining to student clubs and organizations, including organizing the Greek Games with the help of SGA and McAC

Article III. Membership in the GBB

To be a recognized group under GBB, a group must:

Clause 1. Have a mission statement that reflects that of GBB.

Clause 2. Be composed of at least ten members. At least half of the group members must be Barnard students and at most one-fourth of the group members may be graduate students.

                Subclause 1: The number of people in each group is subject to review by GBB.

Clause 3. Have at least one-third of the executive board be Barnard students. Subclause 1: Dually recognized groups will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

Clause 4. Present an appropriate constitution and membership list to the Vice Chair upon applying for Stage 1 Club Recognition. The constitution must include a list of all officers on the board of the organization, a description of her/his duties, and procedures for her/his election.

Clause 5. Win a majority (51%) of votes from the general body at Town Hall to gain recognition.

Clause 6. Be open to the suggestion of merging with another group if the purposes and/or goals of the new organization are the same as those of an existing GBB-recognized organization. GBB reserves the right to deny the group the opportunity to become a  club should a similar club already exists.

Clause 7. Be accessible to all members of the Barnard community regardless of race, gender, religion, age, sexual orientation or ability.

                  Subclause 1: An identity-based group (such as a women-only, ethnicity-, or nationality-       based group) can be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by GBB.

Clause 8. Not be affiliated with a political party, candidate or organization, be it national or political organization

Clause 9. No clubs under GBB shall charge membership fees or require dues.

                Subclause 1: Club allocations cannot be used to pay national chapter dues.

Clause 10. Accept and abide by all policies mandated by Barnard College and city, state, and federal law

Article IV – Stages of Club Recognition

Clause 1. Newly recognized groups are considered to be in the “Stage 1” category.

                Subclause 1. Stage 1 Recognized Clubs may:

1.  Reserve space on Barnard and Columbia’s campus

2.  Have an advisor from Barnard Student Life

3.  Have a GBB account to hold their $100 complementary allocation and any money from fundraisers

4.  Hang fliers on Barnard’s campus in accordance with the Barnard College Posting Policy

5.  Hang fliers on Columbia’s campus in accordance with the Columbia University Posting Policy

6. Apply to co-sponsorships, including GBB’s co-sponsorship.

Clause 2. After a minimum of one full semester of Stage 1 recognition, a club may apply for Stage 2 recognition. After reviewing a Stage 2 application, GBB will vote on whether the club will be presented to be voted on by the Town Hall general body members.

               Subclause 1. Groups in Stage 2 may:

1.  Reserve space on Barnard and Columbia’s campus

2.  Have an advisor from Barnard Student Life

4.  Hang fliers on Barnard’s campus in accordance with the Barnard College Posting Policy

5.  Hang fliers on Columbia’s campus in accordance with the Columbia University Posting Policy

3.  Have a GBB account to deposit allocation funds and money from fundraisers.

4.  Hang fliers on Barnard’s and Columbia’s campus

5. Apply to co-sponsorships, including GBB’s co-sponsorship.

6.  Apply for a GBB allocation via F@CU

Clause 3. Stage 1 and Stage 2 recognition shall occur only in the Spring semester.

                Subclause 1. Clubs that receive Stage 2 recognition in the Spring may submit an allocation packet to receive funding for the following year.

Article V - Stage 1 Club Recognition Procedure

Any group applying for Stage 1 Club Recognition must:

Clause 1. Submit an electronic copy of its membership list and an appropriate constitution to the Vice Chair of GBB.

                 Subclause 1. The following information concerning each member shall be included: name, class year, school affiliation (BC, CC, SEAS, GS), and e-mail address.

                 Subclause 2. The following information must be included in the constitution: a list of all officers, a description of each officer’s duties, and a procedure for their election. The Vice Chair may provide the organization with a sample constitution to be used as a template.

                 Subclause 3. Clubs recognized after Fall 2013 may only be recognized by one governing board. They will not be able to obtain dual recognition.

                  Subclause 4. The organization’s executive board must have several committed members, preferably of varying class years.

                  Subclause 5. Each member may  be contacted by the GBB to verify membership.

Clause 2. Obtain the signatures of at least fifty undergraduate students who are not affiliated with the organization that support its recognition and submit this petition as part of the Stage 1 club application to the Vice Chair, reflecting the student body’s recognition of the club’s potential positive contribution to the Barnard campus.

               Subclause 1: The following information of each petition signer must be included: name, class year, school affiliation (BC, CC, SEAS, GS), ad email address

Clause 3. Be active for two semesters prior to submitting the application.

Clause 4. Hold at least one meeting where the executive board members and the general body members of the group are present prior to applying for recognition.

Clause 5. Have at least two of its executive board members present to GBB after submitting the application to the Vice Chair.

               Subclause 1: GBB will then determine whether or not to recommend the group under consideration at Town Hall

Clause 6. GBB will inform the general body of recommendations prior to voting at Town Hall. (Note: Recommendations by GBB do NOT determine recognition. All applicants are encouraged to present at the Town Hall.)

Clause 7. Once GBB has presented its recommendation at Town Hall, a vote will be commenced to determine the formal recognition of the group under consideration. A 51% vote of the quorum is required for recognition.

Clause 8. GBB will reserve space for one activity of a club under consideration prior to recognition. This allows GBB to determine the potential of the organization to contribute to Barnard College campus life. A member of GBB shall attend this event to evaluate and its success, or lack thereof. (Please note: Funding is not provided.)

Article VI. Stage 2 Club Recognition Procedure

Any group applying for Stage 2 Recognition must:

Clause 1. Be active for at least one semester as a Stage 1 Club before applying to become a Stage 2 Club.

Clause 2. Submit an electronic copy of the Stage 2 Club Recognition application found on the GBB website.

               Subclause 1. The Stage 2 application shall consist of four parts: (1) officer/board positions list (2) description of the general body (3) self-assessment of club impact and programs (4) club funding

Clause 3. After GBB reviews the application, the board will vote on whether the application will be presented to the general body for stage 2 recognition at Town Hall.

               Subclause 1. A majority (51%) vote by the board is needed to allow the Stage 1 club under consideration to proceed to Town Hall for the formal Stage 2 recognition process.

Clause 4. The Vice Chair of GBB will present the Stage 1 clubs up for Stage 2 recognition at the Town Hall

Clause 5. Once GBB has presented its recommendation at Town Hall, a vote will be commenced to determine the formal recognition of the group under consideration. A 51% vote of the quorum is required for recognition.

Article VII. Club Registration Procedure 

Clause 1. The activation of all clubs shall be renewed at the beginning of each Fall semester upon submission of the Registration form at Club ReFUEL. A club that registers will be active for the entire academic year, and need not re-register in the spring semester.

              Subclause 1. All information on the registration form must be filled out. This includes the contact information of all club officers and club emails.

             Subclause 2. The accounts of Stage 2 clubs who have registered will be activated for the semester after the President and Treasurer of the club attend Club ReFUEL.

Clause 2. Unregistered clubs may still request a budget for the following year; however, they will not have access to the club account until the president and treasurer of the club have attended Club ReFUEL and the registration procedures have been completed.

Clause 3. If a club fails to register for one academic year, the club shall be placed on probation, the terms of which are determined by GBB’s Vice Chair, GBB, and the club’s Student Life advisor.

Clause 4. If a club fails to register for four consecutive semesters, the club will be officially deactivated through the de-recognition process. Should they wish to become active again, the group must apply for Stage 1 Recognition.

Clause 5. Newly recognized clubs must register for a makeup Club ReFuel session

Article VIII. Club Guidelines and Standards

Clause 1. All clubs must submit Monthly Reconciliation forms to the Finance Chair by the first day of each month.

              Subclause 1. All clubs must submit Monthly Reconciliation form each month even if they do not spend a portion of their allocation during a given month.

             Subclause 2. Clubs that fail to submit a Monthly Reconciliation form shall have their accounts frozen until their missing Monthly Reconciliation Form(s) have been submitted.

Clause 2. In the beginning of the year, the Vice Chair and the Finance Chair will provide all clubs with a list of the type of events and expenses that the GBB allocation will and will not fund through the Budget Guidelines given out at club reFUEL.

Clause 3. Each club is required to meet with their Student Life Advisor at least once a semester. If a club fails to meet with its advisor, the club shall be placed on probation.

Clause 4. The Student Life Office must approve all contracts involving outside speakers, caterers, performers etc. Requisition forms are then submitted by the club, along with the contract to the GBB Bookkeeper. In case of contracts involving social functions, approval must be obtained at least two weeks prior to the date of said function.

Clause 5. All financial transactions must go through the GBB Bookkeeper.

Clause 6. All clubs are required to attend Club ReFUEL.

Clause 7. All clubs are required to report change in leadership and constitution to the Vice Chair.

Clause 8. In the Spring, each club must provide GBB with the contact information for its executive board for the upcoming semester.

Article IX. Club Probation

Clause 1. Clubs may be designated to a probationary period as determined by the Vice Chair and the Student Life Advisers, and will be evaluated on a case by case basis.

Clause 2. Reasons for probation include but are not limited to the following club bylaw violations:

1. Failure to hold one event on Barnard’s campus each year

2. Failure to meet with the club’s Student Life advisor at least once per semester

3. Failure to register for one academic year at Club ReFuel or a Club ReFuel makeup session

4. Violations of Barnard College or Columbia University policy

5. Failure to attend two consecutive GBB Town Halls

6. Overdraft

Clause 3. Overdraft of club finances as a reason for club probation

  1. The amount overdrafted will be subtracted from club’s allocation for the following academic year.

  2. Overdraft probation policy is as follows:

    1. If overdraft is under $100:

    1. Clubs may not access their accounts for the first month of the following academic year

      1. During this one-month period, clubs will not be able to apply for additional funding through GBB co-sponsorship funds

    2. Clubs must meet with their Student Life advisor the semester following the overdraft

  1. If overdraft is over $100:

    1. Clubs may not access their accounts for the first three months of the following academic year

      1. During this three-month period, clubs will not be able to apply for additional funding through GBB co-sponsorship funds

    2. Clubs must meet with their Student Life advisor and the finance chair the semester following the overdraft

    3. Club E-board must attend the Student Life financial literacy workshop

    4. Failure to attend the advisor meeting or the financial literacy workshop may result in derecognition

If a club placed on probation continually fails to meet the aforementioned criteria they risk derecognition.

Article X. Club Derecognition

Clause 1. Conditions for club de-recognition are based on: Subclause 1: Any serious violation of the conditions stated in the GBB By-Laws

                 Subclause 2: Having been on probation for one semester

Clause 2. The Vice Chair will arrange a meeting between GBB and the Executive Board of the club in question to discuss why the club is being considered for derecognition

Clause 3. The club in question will be allowed to present its case before GBB.

Clause 4. After the club’s meeting with GBB, a majority of student club leaders (51 percent majority)) must vote to officially de-recognize the club in question at the semesterly Town Hall.  

                Subclause 1: A club that is up for derecognition may present its case to maintain recognition at Town Hall.

Article XI. Electing, Appointing, and Removing GBB Board Members

Section 1 - Eligibility

Executive Board positions are open to any continuing full-time undergraduate student at Barnard College, Columbia College, the School of Engineering and Applied Science, or the School of General Studies.

Clause 1. GBB Board members cannot be abroad or graduate early during their terms.

Section 2 - Election Procedures

All candidates for a GBB position are required to submit a statement of intent to be made available to the voting population on  the date of the election.

Clause 1. Election of GBB Board Members:

              Subclause 1. Candidates for each position will be elected by club members at the Spring Town Hall.

              Subclause 2. A majority vote (51 percent) of the quorum is necessary for election to GBB.

             Subclause 3.  Voting for an office will commence after each candidate for that office has spoken. Elections will proceed in the order of Executive Chair, Vice Chair, Finance Chair, and Communications Chair, Programming Chair, and General Representative

            Subclause 4. All GBB-recognized clubs are required to send two members to each Town Hall and to cast one (1)  vote during the voting period. Proxy votes are prohibited.

            Subclause 5. An individual who holds a position on the executive board of multiple GBB-recognized organizations may cast separate votes on behalf of their respective organizations.

Section 3 - Resignations

Clause 1. If any member of the board resigns, applications for the vacancy shall be solicited from the general membership. A new representative may then be appointed by a simple majority of GBB.

Section 4 - Impeachment and Removal

Clause 1. Grounds for impeachment shall include serious abuse of membership privileges, neglect of the duties set forth in GBB’s Constitution, or deliberate violation of GBB’s Constitution.

Clause 2. Impeachment proceedings may be initiated by one of the following methods:

                Subclause 1. A request submitted in the form of a petition signed by the majority of GBB board members.

                Subclause 2. A request submitted in the form of a petition signed by one or more officers of no fewer than one-fifth (1/5) of all registered GBB groups

Clause 3. An impeachment session will occur at the Town Hall following the request for impeachment.

              Subclause 1. Two representatives from the group who submitted the impeachment request will be given a brief opportunity to present the reasons they believe the officer in question should be impeached.

             Subclause 2. The officer in question will be given a brief opportunity to defend themself, if the officer so chooses.

Section 5 – Vacant Positions  

Clause 1. Applications for the vacancy shall be solicited from the Barnard/Columbia student body. A new representative may then be appointed by a simple majority of GBB.

             Subclause 1. The student who wishes to be appointed for the vacant position must complete and submit the appropriate application to GBB.

            Subclause 2. After submitting the application, the applicant is required to meet with GBB at least once

           Subclause 3. GBB executive members will vote on whether the applicant shall be granted the position

Article XII: Amendments to the Constitution

Amendments to the GBB constitution must be approved by a majority (51%) of student leaders at Town Hall.

Clause 1: A draft of the proposed amendment(s) will be provided to the clubs prior to the Town Hall.


Clause 2. All Constitutional amendments must be presented at the Fall semester Town Hall.