Our Constitution

-Updated on 21 February 2017-

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OUR CONSTITUTION

 

PREAMBLE

We, the students of the Louisiana State University School of Medicine, desiring to undertake the responsibilities of self- government, believe that student government is both helpful and beneficial to our student body in preserving and furthering representation. By coordinating the common objectives of the students, faculty, and administration, we do hereby establish and ordain this Constitution for the Louisiana State University School of Medicine (New Orleans) Student Government Association.

 

ARTICLE 1

Delegation of Powers

The duties and powers of the Student Government Association shall be vested in the Legislative and Executive Departments of that student governing body.

 

ARTICLE 2 

Legislative Department

Section 1 – The Legislative Department of the Student Government Association, hereafter termed SGA, shall have the power to provide for the general welfare of the Student Body, regulate Student Body activities, promote the progress of Science and Arts, make rules for the Government and Regulation of Student Body conduct, make all laws necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing Powers, and undertake all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the government of the Student Body or in any Branch of Office thereof.

Section 2 – SGA shall consist of the duly elected President, Vice President of Executive Affairs, Vice President of Community Affairs, Vice President of Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, and Technology Chair of the Student Body as well as the duly elected Presidents of the Senior, Junior, Sophomore, and Freshman classes. It will also include the presidents of all student organizations that meet requirements for voting membership as designated in ARTICLE 6, Section 2B. The President of the Student Body shall act as the Presiding Officer of the Student Government Association.

Section 3 – The President of the Student Body shall assume the responsibility of providing for and executing the election of his/her successor and the successors of the Vice Presidents of Executive Affairs, Community Affairs and Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, and Technology Chair of the Student Body. The election is to occur at an optimum time after March 15th of the year in which the successors shall assume the duties and responsibilities of their respective offices. Successors of SGA officers shall assume the duties and responsibilities of their respective offices on June 1 following the election or earlier if the present officer graduates. Class officer nominations and elections shall take place in a timely fashion following SGA elections. First year class officer nominations and elections shall take place at a convenient time in October. Successors of class officers shall assume the duties and responsibilities of their respective offices at the end of each academic year.

The President, Vice Presidents of Executive Affairs, Community Affairs and Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, and Technology Chair of the Student Body as well as all class officers shall be considered duly elected after receiving greater than fifty percent (50%) of all votes cast by the students in a duly called election. In the event that a candidate for one of the above named offices does not a vote of greater than fifty percent (50%), a second election will be called, with the same aforementioned regulatory provisions, between the two candidates receiving the largest number of votes in the first (1st) election. To be duly elected in the second (2nd) election, a candidate must receive greater than fifty percent (50%) of all votes cast in that election, assuming said election is in accordance with the foregoing provisions.

Section 4 – In the event of an unforeseen circumstance whereby the President of the Student Body cannot or does not assume the duties and responsibilities of the office for a period exceeding a total of 12 consecutive weeks, the SGA shall provide for a duly called election within thirty (30) days. During such time the duties and responsibilities of the Office of President shall be assumed according to the order of executive succession as outlined in ARTICLE 2, Section 5, and duties shall be relinquished to the newly elected President of the Student Body upon election in said manner as outlined in ARTICLE 2, Section 3. In the event of an absence of the President of the Student Body or inability of the President to perform his constitutional duties for a period of less than 12 weeks, these responsibilities shall also be undertaken according to the order of succession. All decisions or official decrees made by the person in such capacity shall be binding on SGA and the President of the Student Body.  This can occur until such time, not exceeding 12 weeks, as the duly elected President of the Student Body can resume the duties of his/her office. Note that the duration of 12 weeks means that the President of the Student Body cannot remain out of the city of New Orleans for more than 12 weeks during his/her term in office.

In the event of an unforeseen circumstance, if any other member of the executive council cannot assume the duties and responsibilities of his/her office for a period of 12 consecutive weeks, the President of the Student Body shall call for a new election amongst the students represented by that office.  An officer can spend no more than 12 consecutive weeks out of the city of New Orleans during his/her term. This rule shall apply to the Vice President of Executive Affairs, Vice President of Community Affairs, Vice President of Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, and Technology Chair of the Student Body, as well as the Senior Class President, Junior Class President, Sophomore Class President, and Freshman Class President.

Section 5 – The order of executive succession shall be: President, Vice President of Executive Affairs, Vice President of Community Affairs, Vice President of Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, Technology Chair, Fourth Year Class President, Third Year Class President, Second Year Class President, and First Year Class President.

Section 6 – In the event that a Class President is unable to attend an SGA meeting, another duly elected officer of the class will be considered as a recognized alternate. This alternate representative will be extended the full voting and speaking privileges for the portion of the Student Body that he/she represents. No other representative of the class will be recognized.

Section 7 – In the event that a president of a student organization is unable to attend an SGA meeting, another duly elected officer in that organization will be considered as a recognized alternate. This alternate representative will be extended the full voting and speaking privileges for the portion of the Student Body that he/she represents. No other representative of an organization will be recognized. This section pertains only to organizations that meet the requirements for voting membership to SGA as designated by ARTICLE 6, Section 2B.

Section 8 – Each member of the Executive Council, with the exception of the Student Body President, or presiding officer, will have the power to cast one (1) vote when such a vote is required for decisions of the Student Government Association. However, in event of a deadlock vote, the Presiding Officer of SGA shall cast a ballot. In the event that any one voting member should legally hold more than one position in the association, he shall assert his/her representation and perform his duties in the capacity of only one, of his choice, leaving the other office or offices void of voting privileges.

Section 9 – Two thirds (2/3) of the eligible voting membership of the association shall be considered as a quorum. This is to be determined by written tabulation at any and every duly called meeting.  Quorum must be present in order for any vote to take place at an SGA meeting.  Suspension of voting privileges will be imposed for each vote in which a representative is not in attendance for at least two meetings prior to the day on which a major vote will be cast.  Any organization that is suspended for more than two major votes will be subject to having voting privileges revoked until the start of the next academic year based on the final discretion of the Executive Council. The President of the Student Body will give all members of SGA adequate notice when a major vote will be required to make a decision.

Section 10 – Compulsory attendance is expected of each and every member, or alternate (as explained in ARTICLE 2, Sections 6 and 7), to the majority of meetings for the academic year. It is reasonable to require all members of SGA to attend 75% of meetings held each semester. The association holds the right to discuss the status of voting privileges of any representative or executive officer in regard to excessive absences from meetings. A discussion may be called and voted upon at any time during the academic year.

Section 11 – The Presiding Officer of SGA will, within the authority of his office, call meetings of the association a minimum of four time per academic semester, with preference given to the 3rd Wednesday of a given month. If any issue arises that is of major concern or importance to the Student Body, it is the obligation of the Presiding Officer of the Student Body to call for a general forum. This will give all who desire the opportunity the chance to express their opinion on the issue.

Section 12 – Any activity of any member of SGA not within the authority delegated by or within approval of the association shall not be assumed to be the responsibility or decision of the association.

 

ARTICLE 3 

Executive Department

Section 1 – The Executive Powers herein granted shall be vested in the Executive Council of the Student Government Association, hereafter called the Executive Council. The Executive Council can, with the authority of SGA, enforce any and all legislation properly issued by SGA for the welfare of the Student Body.  It may undertake any other duties within the province of the Student Government Association that is considered to be within the scope of their power. The actions of the Executive Council shall be binding upon SGA, if and only if, the actions are within the authority of SGA and in accordance with the duties and responsibilities assigned to the Executive Council by this Constitution.

Section 2 – The Executive Council of the Student Body shall be composed of the President, Vice Presidents of Executive Affairs, Community Affairs and Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, and Technology Chair of the Student Body as well as the Presidents of the Senior, Junior, Sophomore, and Freshman classes. All powers of the Executive Council shall be ascribed to them. The President may delegate the authority and duties of the Executive Council as he/she deems necessary.

Section 3 – The election, term of office, and provision for succession of the President, Vice Presidents of Executive Affairs, Community Affairs and Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, and Technology Chair of the Student Body shall be executed, administered, and provided as stated in ARTICLE 2, Section 3 and 5.

Section 4 – Guidelines for the responsibilities of the Executive Council of SGA shall be as follows:

A – The President of the Student Body shall:

  1. Serve as Presiding Officer of the Student Government Association;
  2. Represent the students of LSU Medical School in all administrative duties and responsibilities as conferred to him/her by virtue of the Office of the President and as governed by the Constitution;
  3. Delegate duties to other individuals as he/she deems necessary with the approval of SGA;
  4. Serve as Investigator for the Council on Professional Conduct concerning all formal complaints brought against students.
  5. Serve on the Technology committee and take part in decisions regarding the utilization of technology fee funds
  6. Assist other officers in the performance of their duties;

B – The Vice President of Executive Affairs shall:

  1. Be a voting member of
  2. Assume all duties and responsibilities of the President in his absence;
  3. Serve as Presiding Officer of SGA in the absence of the President in accordance with ARTICLE 2, Section 4 of this Constitution;
  4. Plan and coordinate Annual Family Day activities;
  5. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the student

C – The Vice President of Community Affairs shall:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA;
  2. Serve to keep the student body aware of and recruit student volunteers for community projects;
  3. Be in charge of funds allotted for community projects with the approval of SGA;
  4. Coordinate and assist appointed program directors in the implementation of community projects;
  5. Serve as a member of the Service Learning Elective Committee and coordinate deadlines and regulations with each class;
  6. Serve as Presiding Officer of the council as stated in ARTICLE 2, Section 5;
  7. Serve as primary coordinator/organizer of the annual “Tiger Run 5k”
  8. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the student

D – The Vice President of Social Affairs shall:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA;
  2. Coordinate all social aspects of the Louisiana State University Medical School student body including seasonal parties, Family Day reception, social events, etc;
  3. Serve as Presiding Officer of the Council as stated in ARTICLE 2, Section 5;
  4. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the student

E – The Treasurer shall:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA;
  2. Be responsible for handling all financial matters pertaining to SGA activities
  3. Keep accurate financial records throughout his/her term of office;
  4. Provide a list of revenues and expenses at the first and last SGA meeting of each semester;
  5. Publish an account of revenues and expenditures for the previous year prior to leaving office;
  6. Submit an annual budget to SGA for its approval at the beginning of each school year;
  7. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the Student

F – The Secretary shall:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA;
  2. Be responsible for the official minutes of all SGA meetings and the distribution of the minutes prior to the next scheduled meeting;
  3. Be responsible for carrying out the rules of proper use of bulletin boards pertaining to students of LSU Medical School;
  4. Maintain a monthly calendar of events on the bulletin board and for submission to the SGA website;
  5. Prepare and distribute the LSU Medical School Student Directory (Tiger Bell) each fall semester;
  6. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the student

G – The Technology Chair shall:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA;
  2. Coordinate the Technology Representatives from each class and voice any issues or developments to the association;
  3. Manage the SGA website and act as the contact person for updating all information;
  4. Serve on the Technology Fee Committee and act in a leadership position under the discretion of the President of the Student Body;
  5. Serve as the primary contact for SGA regarding the use of technology for the students of the LSU School of Medicine;
  6. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the Student

H – The Vice President of Student Health & Wellness shall:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA;
  2. Coordinate with the Office of Student Health for events such as vaccination/immunization fairs;
  3. Be the primary contact for the distribution of “Splash Cards” during orientation for the entering class
  4. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the Student

I – The Executive Yearbook Chair:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA;
  2. Coordinate the Class Yearbook Officers in efforts to maintain the distribution of the annual yearbook;
  3. Negotiate contracts with publication firms and the Dean’s Office;
  4. Operate and maintain responsibility of the official SGA Yearbook Camera;
  5. Assist other officers in carrying out their responsibilities as representatives of the Student

The above guidelines have been set forth in an effort to delineate some of the duties and responsibilities of those elected as student body officers and in no way is any officer of the Executive Council limited only to those responsibilities stated above.

ARTICLE 4 

Ratification

Section 1 – This Constitution shall be considered ratified and shall pass into immediate effect after receiving two-thirds (2/3) of all votes cast by the Student Body in a general election to be called and executed by the President of the Student Body.

Section 2 – Adoption by ratification of this Constitution makes null and void all previous constitutions, regulations, and powers of any past Student Governments of the Louisiana State University School of Medicine in New Orleans.

 

ARTICLE 5 

Amendments

When a two-thirds (2/3) vote of the SGA membership deems it necessary, they shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, provided that no Amendment shall, in any way whatsoever, violate the Rights and Privileges granted to the Student Body by this Constitution.  The Amendment(s) will be considered ratified after receiving two-thirds (2/3) of all votes cast by the Student Body in a special election to be called and executed by the President of the Student Body.

 

ARTICLE 6

Bylaws

Any legislation that has more than temporary effect will be considered a bylaw under this Constitution. A two-thirds (2/3) vote of the Student Government Association at a duly called meeting is necessary to pass a bylaw under this Constitution.

Section 1 – Organization of Student Representatives (AAMC):

A – OSR Member: The Louisiana State University School of Medicine (New Orleans) OSR Member will be considered duly elected after receiving greater than fifty percent (50%) of all votes cast in a duly called election by the President of the Student Body. This election shall occur concurrently with the election of freshman class officers as provided for in ARTICLE 2, Section 3, (during the appropriate year). The term of this office will be four years, serving as alternate to the upper level member until that individual graduates.

B – The OSR Member shall:

  1. Be a voting member of SGA (in the same capacity as a student organization);
  2. Serve as liaison for LSU Medical School to the American Association of Medical Colleges;
  3. Actively participate in OSR discussions via email or at National/Regional Conferences with the intent to represent LSU medical students;
  4. Accurately communicate to the student body any information gathered via mail, email, conferences, concerning the LSU Medical School;
  5. Actively relay to the appropriate person or group any information that may positively affect LSU School of Medicine or its student body;
  6. Serve as the Careers in Medicine coordinator with the Assistant Dean of

Section 2 – General Regulations of the Student Government Association:

A – Qualifying for Student Body Election: Any person who desires to run as a candidate for any SGA or class office must submit in writing to the Office of Student Affairs his or her intention of running for that office during a call for nominations prior to the announced elections. It will be the responsibility of the President of the Student Body to establish and inform the students of the opening and closing dates for nominations in order to qualify for the upcoming election. These dates will be determined according to the time period set in this Constitution in ARTICLE 2, Section 3.

  1. Spring elections: In order to run for any office, a student must be in good academic standing and must accept the time constraints of the office. This shall mean that the student has successfully passed all classes in the academic year in which the election takes place. Final decisions will be at the discretion of the Office of Student Affairs.
  2. Fall elections: In order for a freshman to run for any office, he/she must be in good academic standing and accept the time constraints of the office. This shall mean that the student has successfully passed all parts of the Block One exam in that fall semester. Final decisions will be at the discretion of the Office of Student
  3. Students running for an office in the SGA/ class elections shall NOT be involved in the organization and running of the elections. Candidates shall not campaign directly outside of or inside of Student Affairs

B – Voting Privileges:  One representative from each student organization that is in good standing will be granted the same voting privileges as members of the Executive Council as stated in ARTICLE 2, Section 8. In order to vote, the representative must be in attendance at two meetings prior to the date on which a major vote is to be held. An organization in good standing is defined by current registration with the Executive Council and organizational activity (i.e. meetings, projects, etc.) during the fall and spring semesters.

C – Absentee voting at an SGA meeting will be allowed for the President, Vice President of Executive Affairs, Vice President of Community Affairs, Vice President of Social Affairs, Treasurer, Secretary, and Technology Chair of the Student Body. An absentee vote must be submitted to the President of the Student Body or Presiding Officer.

D – SGA can appropriate funds to any group or organization in good standing if the request is presented in the presence of a quorum of voting members of SGA. A 2/3 vote is needed for the petition to pass. Requests may only be proposed by organizations who volunteered a minimum of 4 officers or members (cannot be a member of the SGA Executive Board) at the annual Tiger Run.

  1. Requests related to travel expenses: A maximum of $300 per club per academic year is allowed. Once the petition passes, approval forms must be filled out 1 month prior to travel. Details for paperwork can be accessed through the Office of Student
  2. Requests related to organizational expenses: A maximum of $200 per club per academic year is allowed. Once the petition passes, all receipts must be submitted to the SGA Treasurer prior to distribution of

E – Intramural athletics may submit in writing, by September 15 of each year, a budget to be approved by SGA for that school year.  The request for funds must be presented in the presence of a quorum of voting members of SGA.  A 2/3 vote is needed for the petition to pass and all receipts must be submitted to the SGA Treasurer prior to distribution of funds. A maximum of $200 per academic year is allowed.

F – A proposed calendar of student body activities shall be submitted to the Dean of Student Affairs and the Dean of the Medical School by September 30.

G – All students shall have an equal opportunity to nominate themselves for school committees requiring appointment by the Dean of Student Affairs or President of the Student Body. Committee members will report to SGA following all committee meetings to give an update to the student body.

H – Student Government Association dues are currently $15.00/year. Total dues intake will be designated in the budget and divided for community projects, social activities, communication resources, and various aspects of student life. This budget shall support the workings of SGA.

I – Donations to charity organizations by SGA shall not exceed a $500 maximum per year. A donation of no more than

$100 can be made to any single charity organization/event per year. The donations to charity organizations shall come from the community service budget.

Section 4 – Recommendations for Class Officer responsibilities shall be as follows:

A –  The President of the Class shall:

  1. Hold regular meetings with the class officers and with members of the class to inform them of issues of importance and to address any concerns;
  2. Represent the class at weekly SGA meetings;
  3. Oversee the duties of other officers and assist in performance of their duties as needed;
  4. Be responsible for coordinating events specific to each class (Cadaver Lab Ceremony, Oath of Ideals, SCOOP, White Coat Ceremony, Match Day, ).

B – The Vice-President of Community Affairs shall:

  1. Be responsible for organizing and implementing all aspects of the class service projects, including Camp Tiger, Day with the Docs, Holiday Baskets, ;
  2. Assist the SGA Community VP in service-related projects, such as Tiger Run (to include getting info to classmates, signing up participants, );
  3. Serve on the Service Learning Elective Committee and coordinate deadlines and regulations for that particular class;
  4. Have the capacity to serve in the absence of the President at SGA meetings;
  5. Assist other officers in their duties as

C – The Vice-President of Social Affairs shall:

  1. Be responsible for planning post-test parties;
  2. Be responsible for planning the formal event specific to each class;
  3. Assist the SGA Social VP for school-related social functions, such as the Halloween Party (to include getting info to classmates, selling tickets, );
  4. Plan other social events for the class based on availability of funds;
  5. Have the capacity to serve in the absence of the President at SGA meetings;
  6. Assist other officers in their duties as

D – The Treasurer shall:

  1. Collect class dues at fall registration;
  2. Be responsible for handling all financial matters related to class activities;
  3. Provide an accurate review of revenues and expenditures once a semester;
  4. Plan a budget for the upcoming year based on the prior year’s expenses;
  5. Have the capacity to serve in the absence of the President at SGA meetings;
  6. Assist other officers in their duties as

E –  The Secretary shall:

  1. Be responsible for providing official minutes of any class officer or class meeting for all members of that class;
  2. Be responsible for carrying out the rules of proper use of bulletin boards pertaining to students if needed (to include MEB and lecture room bulletin boards);
  3. Update the weekly calendar of events in the lecture rooms;
  4. Serve on the Service Learning Elective Committee and be responsible for maintaining the class spreadsheet;
  5. Assist the Class Yearbook Editor as needed;
  6. Have the capacity to serve in the absence of the President at SGA meetings;
  7. Assist other officers in their duties as

F – The Education/Technology Chair shall:

  1. Serve as the liaison between classmates and faculty regarding all course concerns;
  2. Entertain test challenges by a mechanism that is approved by each course director;
  3. Be responsible for maintaining the class website and encouraging participation of class members in this endeavor;
  4. Communicate with the Technology Fee Committee regarding the use of technology for the class;
  5. Have the capacity to serve in the absence of the President at SGA meetings;
  6. Assist other officers in their duties as

G – The Class Yearbook Editor shall:

  1. Be responsible for collection of pictures and captions for the class pages of the school yearbook;
  2. Work with the editor of the yearbook to create the class pages and adhere to the deadlines set forth by the editorial staff;
  3. Have the capacity to serve in the absence of the President at SGA meetings;
  4. Assist other officers in their duties as

H – The Council on Professional Conduct Student Representatives (3) shall:

  1. Understand the term of office to be four years (to be elected freshman year only);
  2. Represent their class and attend all meetings of the CPC;
  3. Participate in formal inquiries by the CPC at the discretion of the CPC co-chairs;
  4. Abide by the guidelines set forth by the

I – The Advocacy Committee Representatives (2) shall:

  1. Understand the term of office to be four years (to be elected in the freshman year only);
  2. Abide by the guidelines set forth by the Advocacy Committee with oversight by the CPC.

-Updated on 21 February 2017-

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