THE ROBERT H. SMITH SCHOOL OF BUSINESS MBA ASSOCIATION CONSTITUTION
We, the members of the MBA Association, in order to improve the full-time Robert H. Smith MBA community, enhance the overall experience for its students, and maximize the value of the Robert H. Smith brand, establish this Constitution of the MBA Association.
Article I- Name
The name of the organization is the MBA Association, henceforth referred to as the MBAA or the Organization. The governing body of the MBAA is the MBA Association Board, henceforth referred to as the Officers, Executives or the Board.
Article II- Purpose
The mission of the MBAA is to enrich the MBA student experience by providing leadership that empowers and inspires, advocacy on behalf of student interest and coordination of all student run activities.
In so doing, the MBAA is charged with, but not limited to:
1. Acting as a liaison with Smith administration and faculty, students and the business community;
2. Enhancing, not replacing, other administration efforts to enhance the student experience;
3. Promoting and enhancing the reputation of the R.H. Smith MBA program;
4. Enhancing the educational experience and professional development of all members; and
5. Managing resources to promote MBAA-recognized clubs.
In order to accomplish these efforts, the MBAA shall work in conjunction with recognized clubs. Additionally, the MBAA understands and is committed to fulfilling its responsibilities of abiding by University of Maryland policies.
Article III- Membership
Active membership shall be limited to persons officially connected with the University of Maryland as students. Students enrolled as a full-time MBA student in the fall, spring, or summer semesters are eligible for membership. In addition, the following requirement is necessary to constitute active membership:
1. Payment in full of financial obligations as determined by the Officers.
The MBAA openly admits students to its membership and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, nationality, sex, sexual orientation, handicap, age, marital status. We are compliant with all University policies.
Article IV- Officers
The MBAA will be governed by the following officers:
1. An elected President will facilitate the development and implementation of the overall vision and strategy for the Organization in coordination with the departments in the Smith community including, but not limited to, Masters Program Office, Office of Career Services, Office of Development and Alumni Relations, and the Dean’s Office. The President shall preside over all meetings of the Board. The President shall maintain the power to appoint all committee chairpersons and non-voting board members, shall present all motions to the body present, and shall be present at no less than 75 percent of all meetings of the Officers. Additionally, while the President has the final authority to act on behalf of the MBAA, his/her decision may be overruled by a 2/3 majority of the Officers. Lastly, the President shall attend necessary R.H. Smith MBA meetings as determined by the Organization. The President is the official judge of a budget appeals for MBA recognized clubs during the appeals process. The President will have secondary signatory rights for contracts. Contracts exceeding two thousand dollars will require a second signature. The name of the President will be added to the MBAA bank account. The President will be elected in the first tier of elections in February.
2. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Executive Vice President. The Executive Vice President’s duties shall be to preside over all meetings and functions that the President cannot attend, act as the MBAA-recognized clubs’ advocate on the Board, communicate the Board’s desires to the MBAA-recognized clubs and act as the President’s chief advisor. The Executive Vice President will coordinate club activities and be responsible for maintaining the official calendar of events for the Organization. The Executive Vice President will also be responsible for submitting the MBAA’s registration renewal with the Office of Campus Activities annually during the spring semester. The Executive Vice President is responsible for the organization and execution of MBAA and club elections. The Executive Vice President is also responsible for organizing efforts to address the class gift for his/her class. The Executive Vice President will be elected in the second tier of elections in February.
3. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of Finance, whose duties will be to handle all dues/income for the MBAA as well as all MBAA accounts. The Vice President will coordinate the appropriations process. The Vice President shall preside over the Finance Council, whose objective is to develop the MBAA-recognized clubs’ budgets during the appropriations process. In addition, the Vice President will be responsible for presenting the Financial State of the MBAA to the membership once a semester and for updating MBAA financial guidelines annually. The Vice President will have primary signatory rights for contracts. Contracts exceeding two thousand dollars will require a second signature. The Vice President will be elected in the first tier of elections in February.
4. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of Marketing and Communications who will be responsible for organizational communications. The Vice President of Marketing shall be responsible for the announcement of all MBAA meetings. The Vice President of Marketing will be responsible for the design and maintenance of the MBAA website as well as the intranet page. The Vice President of Marketing is responsible for overseeing the creation and posting of MBAA meeting notes. The Vice President of Marketing will oversee the collection of any student body data needed for MBAA strategy. The Vice President of Marketing will be elected in February.
5. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of External Relations who will act as a liaison between the full-time MBA student body and other groups within the Smith and UMD communities including, but not limited to, alumni, faculty and staff, part-time MBAs, executive MBAs, and foreign exchange MBAs. The Vice President will be responsible for meeting with alumni relations and alumni representatives, as well as facilitating alumni participation/involvement in MBAA events and initiatives. The Vice President serves as the MBAA representative to the Graduate Student Government and may attend the monthly assembly meetings. The Vice President will be elected in the second tier of elections in February.
6. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of Community Development and Social Value who will create and manage regular and frequent social events for the benefit of the MBAA community, and will be responsible incorporating social impact into all MBAA events. In addition, the Vice President will be responsible for organizing community outreach events and programs. The Vice President will be responsible for planning and executing events including, but not limited to, happy hours, tailgates, and food drives. The Vice President will be responsible for creating event themes and timelines, as well as managing logistics and securing event volunteers. The Vice President will oversee the creation and operation of a Community Service Committee and Social Events Committee. The Vice President of Community Development will be elected in the second tier of elections in February.
7. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of Professional Development & Ethics who will work with the Office of Career Services to help tailor programming, internal communication and external efforts to better meet the needs of MBA students. The Vice President will act as the student body representative in all issues surrounding non-academic ethics violations, etiquette infractions, is responsible for maintaining etiquette among the student body and ensuring that a high level of professionalism is upheld at Smith. Additionally, the Vice President will oversee the creation and operation of the Career Strategy Council, and will administer a mentoring program for first year students. The Vice President will be elected in the second tier of elections in February.
8. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of Student Affairs who will work with the Masters Program Office to create orientation and academic initiatives that foster a sense of community in the program. The Vice President will oversee the creation and operation of the Orientation Committee, will preside over the grade appeals process, and will act as a faculty student liaison. Additionally, the Vice President will oversee the creation and operation of the Student Experience Committee. The Vice President will be elected in December.
9. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of Signature Events who will be responsible for the Organization’s keystone social and social impact events. The Vice President will be responsible for creating event themes and timelines, as well as managing logistics and securing event volunteers. The Vice President will be responsible for planning and executing events including, but not limited to, Team MBA week, Monte Carlo Night, the Year End Banquet and the Second Year Send-Off. The Vice President will be elected in December.
10. The MBAA shall also maintain an elected Vice President of International Student Affairs who will be responsible for being the voice of the International Students and Foreign Exchange Students to the MBA Association and the administration. The Vice President for International Student Affairs shall be responsible for administering the International Peer Mentor Program before International students arrive in fall. The Vice President for International Student Affairs will be responsible for the planning and execution of International Orientation in conjunction with the Masters Program Office and the International MBA Association. The Vice President for International Student Affairs will be elected in the second tier of elections in February.
11. The MBAA shall also maintain elected Track Representatives. Each first-year track will elect two representatives to act as liaisons between that class and the MBAA. The Track Representatives will be non-voting advisory members of the MBAA. Track Representatives shall attend all MBAA meetings and shall communicate any pertinent information from the MBAA, faculty, staff or alumni to their classmates. Track Representatives shall also attend other organizational meetings as necessary to act as advocates for their respective tracks to include, but not limited to, a weekly meeting with the Masters Program Office. The Track Representatives will be elected in September.
Article V- Operations
Those members meeting all requirements of active membership as set forth in Article III shall be granted voting privileges in elections.
Election Process: All officers shall be elected by a majority popular vote of the eligible voting members of the Organization. In the event of a tie, a run-off will take place to determine the election winner. All elections will be held on an annual basis with all officers elected in the spring semester, with the exception of the VP of Student Affairs and VP of Signature Events. All voting shall be done by secret, electronic ballot. Voting records shall be made available to any member of the organization upon request.
Removal of Officers: Any officer of the MBAA in violation of the Organization’s purpose or constitution may be removed from office by the following process:
1. First, a written request of removal signed by at least three members of the Organization must be presented to the Board.
2. Second, written notification of the request must be presented to the officer in question, asking the officer to be present at the next Board meeting and to be prepared to offer a verbal explanation to any members who choose to attend.
3. If a majority of Board vote to continue with the procedure then a meeting will be convened with the Organization and a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the attending membership is necessary to remove the officer.
4. Replacement of the officer position seat shall be decided by majority vote of the Board.
Organization Meetings: All meetings will occur on at least a semester basis at a time and place selected by the Board. Notification of the time and place of said meetings shall be accessible to all Organization members. Meetings shall follow an agenda set by the President.
Minutes for each meeting shall be kept by the Executive Vice President.
Communications regarding the announcement of all meetings shall be the responsibility of the VP of Marketing and Communications.
Minutes for each meeting shall be kept by the Executive Vice President.
Communications regarding the announcement of all meetings shall be the responsibility of the VP of Marketing and Communications.
In addition, at least one time per semester, the VP of Finance shall present the financial state of the MBAA to Organization members at one of the said meetings.
Officer Meetings: Officers of the MBAA shall meet at least on a weekly basis as determined by the Officers at the time.
Article VI- Finances
The MBAA will finance its activities and the sponsorship of MBAA-recognized clubs through the following means:
1. Membership dues (appropriate amount set by the Board);
2. Business School Departmental funds (including MPO, Academic Departments, Centers, etc.);
3. Part-time MBA Association;
4. Graduate Student Government; and
5. Fundraising activities and sponsorships in accordance with all University of Maryland policies.
Article VII- MBAA-Recognized Club Responsibilities
MBAA-recognized clubs will receive funding from the MBAA and access to other resources within the business school including website space, calendaring and other support. The list of MBAA-recognized clubs will be maintained by the Executive Vice President who will be responsible for disseminating this list to MBAA board members and R.H. Smith departments as necessary to maintain the benefits of MBAA recognition.
All MBAA-recognized clubs must have a charter, readily viewable by its members, which at a minimum must address the following issues:
1. Stated purpose of the club
2. Membership criteria and rights
3. Club officer roles and responsibilities
4. Officer election process
5. How to amend the charter and policies
Additionally, the MBAA-recognized clubs must ensure a fair and equitable election for their officer positions, and as such may not amend their charter from the first day of spring semester until completion of their election process. This provision should be noted in each club’s charter.
In order to avoid conflicts of interest, the MBAA President, Executive Vice President and Vice President of Finance may not hold board position within any Robert H. Smith MBA clubs. Furthermore, the remainingMBAA board officers may neither hold club President or Co-President board positions, nor hold more than one club board position within the Robert H. Smith MBA clubs.
Article VIII- Amendments
This constitution is binding to all members of the MBAA. However, the constitution is not binding unto itself. Changes to the constitution require the following steps and may not be made from the beginning of spring semester through the end of the Officer Election process:
1. Amendment(s) to the constitution may be proposed in writing by any voting member of the MBAA at any Board meeting at which over two-thirds (2/3) of the Officers are present.
2. The proposed amendment(s) must then carry a simple majority vote by the Board in order to proceed for further consideration.
3. A quorum shall consist of two thirds or more of the MBAA-recognized clubs represented by a Club President or other Club Officer or 25% of the Organization membership. The amendment will become effective following approval by a simple majority.
Article IX- Registration Renewal
The MBAA will apply to the Office of Campus Programs for registration on an annual basis one month after the MBAA’s new officer elections. Responsibility for submitting the said Registration Renewal lies with the Executive Vice President as stated in Article IV, Section 2.
Article X- Club Creation Process
To become a MBAA-recognized club the all of the following steps must be completed:
1. Collect the signature of, and nominal dues ($5 minimum) from, 20% of all full-time Smith MBA students, indicating their interest in becoming members of the prospective club. Signature collection may begin no earlier than (1) day following the MBAA club bazaar. Of these signatures, at least one-third (1/3) must be collected from both the 1st-year and 2nd-year MBA classes.
2. Develop an official club charter that details (1) the stated purpose of the club, (2) membership criteria and rights, (3) club officer roles and responsibilities, (4) the club election process, and (5) how to amend the charter. Develop a roster of the club board and board-elect for club administration during the current and following academic year. Upon completion, the charter and board rosters, including 1st year board members, must be submitted to the Executive Vice President of the MBA Association for review.
3. Write a “letter of intent”, detailing roles and responsibilities that the prospective club expects of their potential faculty advisor and submit a copy of this letter to the EVP of the MBAA. Then, seek out a professor at Smith who would be willing take this position and have the professor sign the “letter of intent”, acknowledging their willingness to take on this role.
4. Develop a proposal for the number of events and attendees to be executed between the date the prospective club receives provisional status and the end of Term C.
5. Deliver a presentation before the end of Term B to the existing club presidents stating:
a. The scope of the prospective club’s area of interest
b. The added value the club would bring to the Smith community
c. Why the creation of a new club is necessary to achieve these goals
d. A list and description of proposed club events
e. Names of other clubs they would look to work with
f. The names of their club officers
Once the prospective club members have exited the meeting, the existing club presidents will discuss their thoughts and opinions regarding the addition of the new club. The issue will conclude with a vote to determine whether the prospective club will be elevated to provisional status.
a. A quorum shall consist of two-thirds (2/3) or more of the MBAA-recognized clubs represented by a club president or other club officer.
b. Approval is reached by a two-thirds majority of votes in favor of granting provisional status.
c. Clubs whose leaders vote to approve provisional status must agree to forfeit at least 5% of their MBAA funding for the year, in order to provide seed funding to the provisional club.
d. If the prospective club is rejected, the EVP of the MBA Association will notify the club members and provide feedback on the decision within 2 business days in writing (see section 5 for appeal process).
Under provisional status, the prospective club must execute a specified number of events and attract a specified number of attendees to those events. The exact number of events and attendees will be decided upon by the current club presidents following the vote deciding provisional status due to the nature of the club constituency. These terms must be agreed upon by a simple majority of the club presidents present at the meeting, articulated in writing by the EVP of the MBAA, and signed by the founding members of the prospective club when the decision is made. All the events must be executed between the date the prospective club is granted provisional status and the end of Term C and each must have documented attendance through the use of a sign-in sheet at the event. Upon the end of Term C, the EVP of the MBAA will review the results of the events and decide whether the terms have been satisfied. If approved, the provisional status will be lifted, allowing the new club to take part in the budget process for the following year. If not approved, the provisional status will be revoked and the prospective club will have to repeat the process the following year.
6. If provisional status is not granted, the prospective club may appeal the decision by repeating step 4 of the process no earlier than the following academic year.
7. Upon the completion of the previous requirements, the prospective club will then be seen as a new club in the eyes of the Organization. The new club will be allowed to formalize officer positions, at least one being President and one being the VP of Finance. The new club will be granted the privilege to take part in the next budget cycle, send a representative to club presidents’ meetings, and participate in all other privileges granted to clubs within the Smith School.
Article XI- Club Evaluation and Prioritization Process
1. During Term C, the MBAA will survey the Organization’s membership to assess participation rates in MBAA-recognized clubs.
2. Based on the survey results, clubs with participation of less than ten per cent (10%) of the organization will be placed on probationary status, denoting reduced priority for MBAA funds and event scheduling.
3. The MBAA will cease to recognize clubs which fail to meet participation minimums for two (2) consecutive years. Clubs seeking re-instatement shall follow the club creation process.
4. The Board will have discretion to continue to recognize and/or grant priority to clubs which fail to meet participation minimums. Board discretion may only extend favorable status to clubs, and may not be used to deny status, privileges or priority to clubs which do meet required participation criteria.
Last Updated: January 28th, 2013