Minority Student Union Constitution and Bylaws


We, as members of the Hampden-Sydney College student body, desiring to improve the quality of life for minority students on campus and increasing individual links between all students, do establish this constitution, in order to create and organization that:

• Represents the interests and concerns of minority students at HampdenSydne College,

• Brings together all aspects of minority student life for the purpose of improving the campus environment,

• Encourages pluralism on the part of the faculty, administration, and the student body at large,

• Discourages and abates institutional and individual acts and symbols of racism.

• Heightens awareness and friendship between all people, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or national origin.

• And promotes the Hampden-Sydney spirit of Good Men, Good Citizen.


Section 1: The name of the organization shall be the Minority Student Union; henceforth in the living body called MSU.


Section 1: Membership in the MSU shall be open to any enrolled Hampden-Sydney student - regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, color, or creed - who is interested in improving human relations in general, and the quality of life for minority students in particular, on the campus of Hampden-Sydney College.

Section 2: Students that are eligible for membership shall obtain membership by completing a membership application and payment of dues in the amount of $20. These students shall remain members for the remainder of the academic year.

Section 3: Members may renew their membership the following academic year. Members will obtain renewed membership only if enrolled at HampdenSydney College.


Section 1: The Executive Board shall be the governing body of the MSU and shall consist of the President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Historian.

Section 2: The duties of the Executive Board officers are as follows:

A. The President shall:

  • Chair the Executive Board and represent the MSU at all appointed meetings,
  • Shall call to order and adjourn the meetings of the General Assembly and Executive Board meetings,
  • The President shall chair the Elections Board and coordinate the transition process for newly elected board members,
  • Shall provide leadership and guidance to the organization,
  • Shall be the liaison between the Minority Student Union and the Hampden-Sydney College - Includes acting as the official spokesperson for the MSU)
  • Shall ensure the organization operations are within the established rulesand regulations set forth by Hampden-Sydney College,
  • Shall reserve the right to appoint a cabinet consisting of no more than two (2) cabinet members of each class (cabinet member and alternatemember) - Shall be considered members ofthe "Cabinet" but in an ex-officio capacity without voting power
  • Shall call forth the Cabinet to address specific issues and tasks - Shall present all recommended individuals for this body tothe Executive Board - Shall confirm recommendations by a 2/3 majority vote,
  • May appoint an able MSU member or assume temporary jurisdiction over any committee - without chairperson- without voting privileges,
  • Maintain open communication with organization advisor,
  • Exemplify organization moral,
  • Shall not have voting privileges except in the following situations but not limited to deemed by the executive, general, and or that of the institutional body - May veto or overturn a decision approved by the MSU Executive Committee - Break ties in the General Assembly and General Election
  • May attain executive prerogative outside ofthese duties and powers of this living body in events of emergency.

B. The Vice President shall:

  • Assist in all duties of the President and shall assume the office and dutie of President in lieu of an absence,
  • Shall chair the Executive Committee/Advisory Board of the MSU,
  • Shall maintain close contact with the appointed chairpersons/directors and report to the Executive Board weekly as to the status of these programs and committees; and
  • Shall serve as chairperson of the Judicial Review Board.

D. The Treasurer shall:

  • Be responsible for all financial correspondence pertaining to the MSU.
  • Should be able to report financial records at meetings of the General Assembly.
  • Shall also represent the MSU at Budget and Finance hearings.
  • May appoint an assistant treasurer - at his/her discretion.

E. The Secretary shall:

  • Record minutes and prepare agendas at all General Assembly and Executive
  • Board meetings and make them readily available to members upon request.
  • Shall keep records of attendance at all MSU General Assembly meetings.
  • Maintain an updated organization directory,
  • Keep an updated roster of Alumni
  • Shall keep all files and calendars.
  • May appoint an assistant secretary - at his/her discretion.

F. The Historian shall :

  • Develop and maintain a scrapbook of memorabilia in which to record the club's history,
  • Research and prepare items of significance of the chapter's history,
  • Prepare displays of club activities and submit stories of former members to the media; and
  • Assist the reporter of the institution in providing photography for club needs.

G. The Advisor shall:

  • Assist the MSU with administrative matters,
  • Serve as the main liaison between the MSU and the Administration of HampdenSydney
  • College; and
  • Represent the MSU within faculty and staff functions.

Section 3: The Executive Board Officers are allowed to miss only three Executive Board meetings and/or four General Assembly meetings.

Section 4: Excused absences are limited to class/work conflicts, family emergencies, college excuses, and sickness collaborated by the Executive Board and/or Advisor.


Section 1: The Minority Student Union shall include the following Executive Committees, with Directors/Chairpersons appointed by the Vice President and approved by the Executive Board:

A. The Public Relations Committee shall consist of the positions of Public Relation Coordinator (Tiger), Historian, and Webmaster. These positions shall be appointed by the Vice President and approved by the Executive Board.

B. The Social Committee shall be responsible for coordinating social events for the Minority Student Union.

C. The Campus Cultural Committee shall be responsible for coordinating cultural events for the Minority Student Union.

D. The Hampden-Sydney Out-Reach to Prince Edward (H.O.P.E.)

Leadership and Scholarship Program Committee shall be responsible for executing the academic year program of mentoring/workshops and presentation of scholarships.

E. The Judicial Review shall deal with any internal conflicts ofthe MSU. The JR may recommend to the Executive Board to tum over such cases to the Student Court of Hampden-Sydney College.

Section 2: The President and/or the Executive Board, as necessary, shall appoint ad hoc committees and task forces of special interest / concerns of the MSU.

Section 3: The MSU shall include an Advisory Board that will consist of representatives of other organizations on campus. These organizations shall be stated in the Bylaws.

Section 4: The Advisory Board shall have the following duties:

A. Discussion on methods of improving the relationship between the different organizations.

B. Improvement of communication among all student organizations on campus.

C. Provide opportunities for minority students to get involved on campus.

Section 5: The Vice President shall appoint an Assistant Director and Corresponding Secretary from the Advisory Board. The Advisory Board shall meet once a month during the Fall and Spring Semesters. The Executive Vice

President may convene a special meeting at any time deemed necessary.

Section 6: All resolutions and programs sponsored by the Advisory Board must be submitted to the General Assembly for approval. The Vice President shall break any ties that occur in Advisory Board votes.


Section 1: There shall be an Elections Board, established to govern all elections, which shall consist of the President, Vice President, and Advisor of the MSU. One member ofthe General Assembly and one member of the Cabinet shall be appointed by the President with approval by the General Assembly.

Section 2: Any member of the MSU running for an Executive Board Office shall not be eligible to serve on the Elections Board. An alternate MSU member shall be appointed by the President, with approval of the GeneralAssembly, to fill any vacancy that may occur.

Section 3: The Elections Board duties consist of approving the applications and platforms of each candidate, the additional voting procedures, the design of the official ballot, and the certification of the vote tally.

Section 4: The following procedures shall govern elections:

A. Elections shall be held during the Spring Semester of every academic year, unless a special election is needed to fill a vacancy.

B. MSU members must submit applications in order to run for an Executive Board Office. Applications will be accepted no later than one-week prior to Election Day, unless a special election is needed to fill a vacancy.

C. The Elections Board shall hold a special meeting in which all Executive Board Office Candidates will be introduced. The Elections Board shall coordinate a debate among candidates for President and shall have the option to do so among candidates for other offices.

D. All active members ofthe MSU shall be eligible to vote in elections for the Executive Board Offices.

E. There shall be no absentee voting unless approved by the Elections Board.

F. A quorum, as defined in the Bylaws, is needed to hold an election of Executive Board Officers.

Section 5: Candidates for Executive Board Offices must have a cumulative grade point average of 2.00 at the time ofthe application deadline. Other qualifications are as follows:

A. Candidates for President must be enrolled at Hampden-Sydney College for at least three (3) semesters prior to the semester of elections. The candidates must also have three (3) semesters of active membership in the MSU.

B. Candidates for Vice President and Treasurer must be enrolled at Hampden-Sydney College for at least two (2) semesters prior to semester of elections. The candidates must also have at least two (2) semesters of active membership in the MSU.

C. Candidates for Secretary and Historian must be enrolled at Hampden-Sydney College for at least one (1) semester prior to the semester of elections. The candidates must also have at least one (1) semester active membership in the MSU.

Section 6: Newly elected Executive Board Officers shall be installed no later than the last meeting of the General Assembly of the Spring Semester.

Section 7: Vacancies in the offices of Vice President, Treasurer, Secretary, and Historian shall be filled through a special election. The Elections Board shall be responsible for all applicable duties outlined in Article V, Section 3. Qualified MSU members, as outlined in Article V, Section 5, shall be nominated during the first General Assembly meeting held after the vacancy. A special election shall be held the following General Assembly.


Section 1: Any Executive Board Officer in violation of Article III, Section 3, in violation of any other section of the Constitution and Bylaws, and/or involved in any action that severely compromises the operation and integrity of the MSU must appear before the Executive Board for evaluation.

Section 2: In the event that violations have been proven through the evaluation process, a motion for impeachment shall be presented by the ExecutiveBoard to the General Assembly.

Section 3: A two-thirds (2/3) vote of the active members present at the General Assembly meeting, provided that a quorum is present, is needed to remove an Executive Board Officer.


Section 1: Meetings ofthe General Assembly shall be held on a schedule agreed upon by the Executive Board.

Section 2: The President or a petition of two-thirds of active members may convene special meetings ofthe General Assembly.

Section 3: Each meeting ofthe General Assembly shall include a Treasurer's Report, Minutes, Cabinet Report, President's Address, and Old and New Business. Reports from the Advisory Board shall take place at the first General Assembly meeting held after the Advisory Board meeting.

Section 4: The Executive Board shall determine the format ofthe General Assemblymeetings. Any additions to General Assembly meetings shall be include in the Bylaws.

Section 5: Meetings of the General Assembly shall follow the format of parliamentaryprocedure outlined within the Robert's Rules of Order. Robert's Rules ofOrder - modified and approved by the Executive Board - shall also beused to address any ambiguity involving parliamentary procedure within the meetings of the General Assembly.


Section 1: The power to present plans to amend or repeal any section of theConstitution rest in the Executive Board. Actions within the Constitution must be approved by two-thirds (2/3) of the active members, provided a quorum is present.


Section 1: Bylaws, when consistent with the Constitution, shall be adopted, amended, or repealed by a vote of two-thirds (2/3) of the active members, provided a quorum is present. Any active member of the MSU can present action within the Bylaws to the Executive Board for approval, at which time the proposed action will be presented before the General Assembly.

Minority Student Union Bylaws


Section 1: All students eligible for membership shall be granted active member status upon completion of the membership application and payment of dues in the amount of in the Fall Semester. Those students that attend four (4) meetings in the Fall shall retain active member status through the Spring Semester.

Section 2: All students eligible for membership that are either unable to fulfill active membership requirements for the Fall Semester or wishing to apply for membership for the Spring Semester, shall be granted active member status upon the completion of four (4) meetings.


Section 1: A quorum shall consist of twenty-five (25) MSU members of active member status.


Section 1: The Advisory Board shall consist of one representative of the following organizations, unless otherwise noted:

A. Jewish Student Union General Assembly (1)

B. International Student Organization (1)

C. Tiger Athletic Council (1)

D. Inter-Fraternity Council (1)

E. Young Democrats (1)

F. Young Republicans (1)

G. Student Government Association

H. Student Senate (2)


Section 1: The MSU shall be represented at the following events:

A. Fall Organization/Club Day

B. Spring Organization Day

C. Any other College recruiting venues deemed necessary

Section 2: The MSU shall also be present at other events agreed upon by theExecutive Board.

Section 3: One representative from the Executive Board and one representative from the Cabinet shall be required at all events in which the MSU shall be represented.


Section 1: Incoming and outgoing Executive Board Officers shall hold a transition retreat no later than the last meeting ofthe Spring Semester.

Section 2: New Executive Board Officers and Cabinet/Directors shall hold a retreat no later than the first month of classes for the Fall Semester.


Section 1: The Executive Board shall have the power to temporarily suspend certain sections of the Constitution and/or Bylaws provided there is a substantial organizational interest that makes a suspension necessary.

Section 2: Motions to temporarily suspend a section of the Constitution or Bylaws must be approved by two-thirds (2/3) of the active membership and shall be limited to the following sections:

A. Article V, Section 4 - Election Procedure

B. Article V, Section 5 - Candidate Qualifications

C. Article V, Section 6 - Officer Installation

D. Title III, Section 1 - Advisory Board Members


Section 1: Special elections needed to fill offices vacated over the summer shall befilled in a special election to take place during the first meeting of the Fall Semester.

Section 2: MSU members that held active member status throughout the previousSpring Semester shall have exclusive voting power in such an election.


Section 1: MSU members, of active member status, shall be eligible to cast votes for Elections, Constitutional matters, and/or Bylaw matters no sooner thenone (1) week after submitting an application for membership.