The constitution and/or by-laws of a student organization should contain the rules that govern the actions and activities of the organization and be specific enough to guide its operations. While the constitution allows for consistency from year to year, the constitution should not be forgotten about and should be revisited and revised as needed.
The document(s) should:
State the purpose of the organization.
Define the characteristics of the organization and criteria for membership.
Prescribe how the group functions and identify the parliamentary procedure by which business will be conducted.
Include all rules that the group considered so important that they (1) cannot be changed without previous notice to the members and a vote, and (2) cannot be suspended.
The following document will help guide you to create a constitution that works for your organization.
SORC Constitution Guidelines
Your Organization's Constitution must include the following two clauses:
- Non-Discrimination Clause
- "Name of organization" does not restrict membership or discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, age, national origin, political affiliation, physical or mental disability, religion, protected veteran status, genetic information, personal appearance, or on the basis of rights secured by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution. (For definitions of “personal appearance” and “sexual orientation,” see the University’s Code of Human Relations (“Code”), http://www.president.umd.edu/sites/president.umd.edu/files/documents/policies/VI-1.00B_2.pdf.
- Abide by University Policies Clause
- "Name of Organization," understands and is committed to fulfilling its responsibilities of abiding by University of Maryland, College Park policies.
- Ratification Date
- Constitution must include a date when the organization has last reviewed, edited, and agreed upon all changes made to the constitution.