We, the members of the History Graduate Student Association, do hereby establish and ordain this Constitution in order to carry out our purposes to the fullest extent.
Article I - Name
The name of this organization shall be "The History Graduate Student Association," henceforth HGSA.
Article II - Purpose
1) HGSA is established for the expressed purpose of fostering an academic and social community among the graduate students of the Department of History at Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, henceforth LSU.
2) HGSA understands and is committed to fulfilling its responsibilities of abiding by LSU policies.
Article III – Basic Policies
The following are basic policies of HGSA:
1) HGSA shall be non-commercial.
2) The name of the organization or the names of any member in their official capacities shall not be used in connection with a commercial concern.
3) HGSA shall cooperate with LSU to support the improvement of education in ways that will not interfere with the administration of the University.
4) HGSA may cooperate with other organizations and agencies, but persons representing HGSA in such matters shall make no commitments that bind the organization. HGSA agrees to abide by all University policies and local, state, and federal laws.
Article IV – Membership
1) Any LSU student, faculty member, or staff member who subscribes to the purpose and basic policies of the organization may become a member of this organization at their request, subject only to compliance with the provisions of this constitution. All graduate students in the LSU history program are automatically considered members so long as they remain in good academic standing with the department. Any member is eligible to become an active member by notifying either the President or the Secretary in writing or via email of their desire. The Secretary shall maintain a list of active members, updated as needed.
2) Active membership is restricted to LSU students. Associate membership is restricted to LSU faculty and staff. Associate members are non-voting members.
3) Active membership shall be open to any person officially connected with LSU, who is a registered graduate student in the Department of History. Persons may be admitted to HGSA at any time.
4) Only active members shall be eligible to participate in its business meetings or serve in any elective or appointive positions.
5) HGSA shall not require members to pay dues or fees in any form.
6) In the event HGSA becomes inactive, all monies left in the treasury after all outstanding debts and claims shall be donated to the LSU Department of History.
7) The HGSA does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, personal appearance, age, national origin, political affiliation, physical or mental disability, or on the basis of rights secured by the First Amendment of the US Constitution.
Article V – Officers and their Election
1) To be eligible to be elected to, appointed to, or to hold an office or be a standing committee chairperson, a student must:
A- Must be a registered Graduate Student in the Department of History and enrolled in at least six semester hours at LSU;
B- Must be in good standing with the University, must have at least a 2.0 cumulative GPA, and must not be restricted from obtaining and occupying a position of leadership by Student Advocacy and Accountability;
C- Must meet all other reasonable academic standards established by the HGSA and included in the HGSA constitution.
2) HGSA will be governed by four executive officers: An elected President, who will serve as chief executive and liaison with the Director of Graduate Studies, one Vice-President, who will serve as the president's deputy, a Secretary, who will maintain an official record of all HGSA business, and a Treasurer, who will be responsible for all finances and accounts. Along with these four officers a Parliamentarian will be appointed by the President to serve for the same term as the President. The duties of the Parliamentarian will conform to the duties described for this office put forth in Robert’s Rules of Order.
3) The Director of Graduate Studies (DGS) in the LSU Department of History shall serve as HGSA faculty advisor, and shall oversee the business of the organization. The advisor will also serve as liaison to faculty and staff of the LSU Department of History and the University. If the DGS is unwilling or unable to serve, another faculty member of the Department of History shall appointed to serve on a volunteer basis. This appointment shall require majority approval of a quorum. A quorum shall consist of twenty-five percent of the active membership at the time.
4) Officer elections for the forthcoming academic year will be held in the latter half of the Spring Semester, on a date to be set by the President. Transition of power will take place within two weeks of the end of the Spring semester.
5) The sitting President will organize a nomination committee, which will consist of two members on a volunteer basis. Committee members shall not be eligible for nomination to any office. Committee members will accept nominations for a period not to exceed ten (10) days. The committee will then announce the results. Any offices not filled by at least a 50.1% majority shall be filled by run-off election, which shall be held within seven (7) days of the initial announcement. Elected officers must accept or decline their offices in writing within forty-eight (48) hours. In the case of a declined office, the candidate garnering the next highest vote total shall have the opportunity to ascend to the office. All voting will be by secret ballot, with specific vote-gathering procedures established by the president and verified by the chair of the nominating committee. A record of all elections and results shall be maintained by the Secretary.
6) Removal: Any officer of the HGSA in violation of the purpose of the organization may be removed from office by the following process: Written request by at least three members of the organization, written notification to the officer of the request, asking the officer to be present at the next meeting and prepared to speak. A 2/3 majority vote of the membership is necessary to remove the officer. Voting shall be held in the same manner as elections for officers, by secret ballot.
7) If the office of President is vacated before the end of the prescribed term, the Vice-President shall ascend to that office. Vacancies of any other office shall be filled by nomination of the President, and confirmed by majority of an active membership quorum.
8) Each year one member shall be chosen, either by election, volunteering, or appointment by the President, to serve as Webmaster of the HGSA web site. The Webmaster will serve as head of the permanent website committee to be appointed or recruited by the President to serve for the term of that President.
9) Each year the President will appoint or recruit a permanent Special Events Committee to serve for the term of that President. This committee will be responsible for planning conferences or other events as determined necessary by the President. Other committees for special purposes shall be assembled on an ad hoc basis by the HGSA president.
Article VI – Financial Policy
1) The HGSA will finance the activities it engages in by the following means: grant proposals for specific events; requests to other school entities for funding for specific events; and fundraising events put on by the HGSA at the officers' and members' discretion.
2) Financial transactions for HGSA will be conducted as follows: A checking account will be established and maintained to conduct all financial business; the sitting President, Vice-President, and Treasurer will be signatories for the account; and any outgoing funds will require the signatures of two of the above officers.
3) HGSA will conform to all financial policies for student organizations as set forth by LSU.
Article VII – Meetings
1) HGSA will meet a minimum of three times per semester, on dates set forth by the President.
2) Twenty-five percent of active members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business in any HGSA regular meeting.
3) The privilege of holding office, introducing motions, debating, and voting shall be limited to active members.
4) The most current edition of Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised shall govern the meetings and other activities of HGSA in all matters applicable and attainable, and which they are not inconsistent with this constitution.
Article VIII – Amendments
1) Amendments shall be subject to the approval of the LSU Office of the Dean of Students or his/her designee.
2) This constitution is binding to all members of the HGSA, but is not binding unto itself.
3) Amendments may be proposed in writing by any active member.
4) Amendments will be placed on the agenda for the next regular HGSA meeting, at which time it will receive a second reading and be open to debate by the meeting. Upon passage by two thirds of the quorum at the second actual meeting the amendment will be voted on by the entire membership. A vote by the entire membership will take place at the third meeting by paper ballot. A 2/3 vote of the membership is required to amend the constitution.
Article IX – Registration Renewal
HGSA will apply to Campus Life for registration on an annual basis within two (2) weeks of new officer elections. This annual reapplication will be conducted by the incoming President with the assistance of the outgoing President.