Group Constitutions

Article I: NAME

The name of this organization shall be the Engineering Student Council.


The objectives of this Student Council shall be:

  1. To represent the interests of the Engineering Students
  2. To actively work to improve all aspects of Engineering student life at Columbia University.
  3. To provide a liaison between students, faculty, administration and alumni of the Engineering School, as well as Columbia and Barnard College.


Members of the Council shall be:

  1. A Class President from each undergraduate class.
  2. A Class Vice-president from each undergraduate class.
  3. Two Class Representatives from each undergraduate class.
  4. Any University Senators elected from the Engineering School.
  5. Liaisons to the Barnard and College Student Councils.
  6. The Executive Board.


The Engineering Student Council is the sole elected representative of the Engineering student body. It is designed for and open to all members of that body. Therefore, it shall:

  1. Work to distribute all available monies appropriately by considering both the needs of the activities and the service which these activities provide to the Engineering students at large.
  2. Appropriate funds for projects of the Council when said projects are believed to contribute to the improvement of the quality of student life.
  3. Work with the administration and faculty as representatives of the general opinion to make changes that the Council deems to be appropriate and necessary.

D. Reflect the general opinions of the Student body on critical issues by passing resolutions when appropriate.


The Executive Committee of the Council shall:

A. Consist of Chairperson, Vice-chairperson. Secretary and Treasurer and serve for a term of one year.

B. The Chairperson of the Council shall:

  1. Chair the meetings of the Council.
  2. Be responsible for the execution of all directives of Council.
  3. Develop an agenda and schedule meetings.
  4. With the approval of 2/3 of the Council appoint representatives to the committee on instruction, and a chairperson for each of the council committees.
  5. Have no voting power, save in the case of tie.

C. The Vice-chairperson of the Council shall:

  1. Perform all duties of the Chairperson in the event he/she is unable to perform those duties.
  2. Assist the Chairperson in performing the functions of the office. Serve as Elections Commissioner.
  3. Function as Parliamentarian during Council meetings.

D. The Secretary of the Council shall:

  1. Keep complete and accurate records of all the Council and Executive committee meetings and present such records to the Council. Give adequate notification of all meetings of the Council to its members.
  2. Conduct correspondence for the Council as necessary.
  3. Be responsible for the upkeep of the constitution and by-laws. And be able, upon request to present these documents to the council.

E. The Treasurer of the Council shall:

  1. See to the correct and proper distribution of funds allocated to recognized student activities. Be responsible for an accounting of the expenditures of the Council and be able to present a budget to the Council on request.
  2. Represent the Engineering School in the Joint Budgetary Committee (JBC).
  3. Be responsible to make a written financial report to the council on the first meeting each month. This will aid council members to make decisions on future allocations. shall be the responsibility of the Engineering Student Council fill vacancies on the Council and its Executive Committee created by resignation or impeachment.
  1. It shall be the responsibility of the Engineering Student Council to fill vacancies on the Council and its Executive Committee created by resignation or impeachment.

Article VI:


  1. Robert's Rules of Order shall, when they do not conflict with the rules set forth in this constitution, be the guidelines by which the business of the Council is conducted.
  2. Meetings of the Council shall be:

1. Held at least once every two weeks during the regular academic session.

2. Called and conveyed at the discretion of the Executive Committee, and after due notice has been given to all members.

  1. To better facilitate the Chairperson to select a mutually agreeable time for meetings, it is the duty of each Council member to give a copy of his/her class and work schedule to the Secretary no later than 3 weeks from the first day of classes.
  2. After receiving due notice of the Council meeting date, it is the duty of individual members to report their absence to the Chairperson or Secretary. The accepted reason for absence will be class conflict. medical problems, work, and others as ruled by the Chairperson.
  1. Voting at the Council meetings is the privilege of:


  1. All members of the Council.
  2. Only members of the Council who are present in person. No proxies shall be recognized and no form of unit vote shall be permitted.

D. A quorum of the Council shall be one-half of its members.

E. All attendants at a scheduled Council meeting may address the Council when it is in session.

F. All meetings of the Student Council shall be open to the University community. This rule may be suspended in special instances by a 2/3 ratio of all voting members of the Council in attendance, and the Council reserves the right to allow non-members to remain during these executive sessions.

G. Any funding over fifty (50) dollars must be passed by a majority vote at any Engineering Student Council meeting. No member of the council has the right to promise any person or group any funding without following this procedure.


A Copy of this article should be given out during the nominations so everyone is aware of the rules.

B. Nominations for the offices should be made two weeks before the actual elections. Candidates can be any student who expects to continue his/her studies at the Engineering School throughout the next year.

C. The positions are to be voted in the following order:

  1. Chairperson
  2. Vice-chairperson
  3. Treasurer
  4. Secretary

D. Each candidate must make a speech, the other candidates requested to leave the room.

E. After all candidates have made their presentation for each office a vote is taken. It is to be a closed ballot. The votes are to be counted by the Chairperson and the Vice-chairperson. If one or both of these officers is running for a position, the votes should be counted by members of the senior class, starting first with the President, then the Vice-president and finally one of the representatives.

F. No proxy votes are allowed.

G. A Candidate who loses the vote for any one position may run for exactly one other position with no nomination necessary.

H. If no candidate receives an absolute majority on the first ballot, then a run-off will take place, at which time the only votes that will be counted are the ones for one of the top two candidates from the first ballot. And on a run-off a simple plurality will be enough for victory.


A. It shall be the responsibility of the Elections Commission to:

  1. Supervise all elections to the Student Council to assure the they are as open and democratic as possible.
  2. Hold elections for Sophomore, Junior and Senior Class Officers during the last two weeks of April.
  3. Hold elections for Freshman Class Officers within 35 days after the beginning of the fall term.
  4. Supervise and conduct the election of the Engineering University Senator(s) in accordance with guidelines set forth by the Senate.
  5. Class and Liaison officers shall serve from the time of their election until the next Spring election, with the exception of Senior class officers who shall serve until their graduation.
  6. Hold elections for Liaisons to the Columbia College and Barnard College Councils.
  7. Class and Liaison election rules shall be specified in the By-laws.

B. Rules governing campaign policy shall be specified in Appendix B.


A. The Grounds for Impeachment and Removal from the Engineering Student Council shall be abuse of membership privileges, or violation of the rules set forth by the Constitution and bylaws.

B. Impeachment proceedings shall:

1. Be initiated by the presentation of a petition with at least ten signatures of Council members.

2. Take place at a meeting at which all parties have been given sufficient notice of proceedings.

C. A member may appeal the Impeachment proceedings at the Council meeting where his/her Impeachment proposal is to be made.

D. Removal from Engineering Student Council shall be by a two-thirds vote at a meeting at which all the procedures of Impeachment have been followed.

E. The vote will be taken by closed ballot.

F. The votes will be tallied by the Chairperson and the Vice chairperson, unless it is a vote to remove one or both of them. In that case the vote will be tallied by the four class presidents.


This constitution may be amended by a two-thirds vote at any meeting of the Engineering Student Council where all members of the Council have been given two weeks notification of such a vote.


The bylaws of the Engineering Student Council should be reviewed once a year by the new Council. It will be the responsibility of the newly elected Vice-chairperson to bring forth the bylaws for review to the Council. If necessary, a committee should be formed to write any proposed changes. These bylaws may be amended by a simple majority of its members, at any meeting of the Engineering Student Council. Members of the Council should be notified of the vote beforehand. If it is announced at the previous meeting, this is sufficient. If not all members should be contacted before the meeting is held.


  1. If the Chairperson does not receive such notice for three meeting absences during one semester, he/she will advise the Council to initiate Impeachment proceedings immediately.
  2. Executive Board Elections will take place in the month of February.
  3. Prospective Liaison candidates must be Freshman. Sophomore or Junior members of the school of Engineering and Applied Science. They man run for either Liaison to the Barnard College or Columbia College student council. Students may vote for up to one candidate for each office with the top vote getter taking the position.
  4. Prospective Class Officers may run for either President, Vice-President or Representative. Students may vote for up to one President, one Vice-President and two Representatives. The top vote getter in the Presidential and vice-presidential categories will assume the office. The top two Representative vote getters will assume that position.
  5. The Elections commission shall consist of the Commissioner and four (4) other commission members. These will be nominated by the Chairperson, subject to the approval of the entire council. People eligible for this position are undergraduates of the School of Engineering and Applied Science, who are members or former members of the Engineering Student Council, and are not planning to run in the next election. The commission members for fall elections must be named by the second meeting of the fall semester. Members for the spring elections must be named by the second meeting after Executive Board elections.
  6. Each class president, at the end of his or her term in office., shall prepare a report explaining the responsibilities of the class president. This report shall also explain the activities organized by the president during his or her term, and any advice for the incoming president. The report must be completed and submitted to the new class president by the first meeting of the new student council.

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