Official Robotics Club Constitution

Last Updated: November 17, 2008

Article I. Name

  1. The name of this organization shall be the Carnegie Mellon Robotics Club, hereinafter referred to as Robotics Club.

Article II. Purpose

  1. Our purpose is to serve as a safe and fun workspace for Carnegie Mellon students to pursue their interests in robotics. The Robotics Club abides by and supports established Carnegie Mellon University policies, State and Federal laws.

Article III. Membership

A. Qualifications of Members

  1. Membership shall be open to all registered students and staff at Carnegie Mellon University. The Robotics Club does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, age, gender, marital status, color, veteran status, sexual orientation, disability, or bionic status.
  2. The responsibilities of a member shall include respecting the Robotics Clubís and membersí property, attending general body meetings, paying dues, participating in mandatory club activities and following the Robotics Clubís fiscal policies.
  3. All members who wish to use the shop must receive Shop Certification from an instructor designated by the Officers.
  4. Responsibilities of any member working on a thesis or commercial project shall include:
  5. Recording the number of hours worked in the Robotics Club for a thesis or commercial project. Also, paying the cost of any materials associated with a thesis or commercial project.
  6. Honoring the Robotics Clubís shop hours for thesis or commercial work.
  7. Non-undergraduate students are not eligible to hold office except for the position of Graduate Student Representative.
  8. All undergraduate students are eligible to hold any Officer position except for the position of Graduate Student Representative.
  9. Any member who wants to work on a project that is not a thesis, commercial or Robotics Club project must have the project approved by Officers. Officers will reserve the right to revoke their approval at any time, and are required to notify said project leader of their decision immediately.
  10. Reasonable Person Clause: Don't be an idiot.

B. Dues

  1. All members of the Robotics Club must pay yearly dues set by the Officers.
  2. Graduate students who work on a thesis project in the Robotics Club must pay an hourly fee and the cost of any used materials in addition to dues.
  3. Students who work on a commercial project (anything that they are getting paid to do) in the Robotics Club must pay an hourly fee and the cost of any used materials in addition to dues and any other fees.

C. Membership Entitlements

  1. Dues paying members are entitled to:
    1. A free Robotics Club T-Shirt
    2. Write access to the internal Robotics Club Wiki
    3. Access to the Robotics Club when a senior member or Officer is present
    4. Use of the Shop, pursuant to Article IV, section B, subsection 4.

D. Membership Termination

  1. Membership may be revoked by a three-fourths vote of Officers.
  2. Any member or Officer may request a vote on any member. To bring the vote to Officers, another Officer must second this request.
  3. If needed, any Officer may temporarily suspend membership until the next Officers meeting when the member will be brought up for a vote.
  4. It is left to the Officersí discretion to determine what constitutes a reason for membership termination. Membership may be revoked because of, but not limited to, any of the following:
  5. Stealing of any Robotics Club property. This includes food.
  6. Endangering a member or oneself because of improper use of tools, carelessness, horseplay, or using a tool without proper certification.
  7. Using another personís work or materials without permission.
  8. Damaging Robotics Club property without informing an Officer. This includes damaging shop tools without informing an Officer.
  9. Doing thesis work or commercial projects without paying a shop and material fee.
  10. Violating Robotics Clubís fiscal policies or Rules.

Article IV. Membership Status

A. Criteria

  1. Any member can hold any membership type, although there are restrictions on Officer positions.

B. Membership Status

  1. Officers
    1. May use the Robotics Club without another member present.
    2. Are responsible for correcting any inappropriate actions of other members.
    3. Have additional responsibilities detailed in Article V.
  2. Senior Members
    1. Are not Officers, but may use the Robotics Club without another member present.
    2. Are responsible for correcting any inappropriate actions of junior members.
  3. Junior Members
    1. May only use the Robotics Club when an Officer or senior member is present.
  4. Shop-certified
    1. May be an Officer, senior member or junior member.
    2. May use all shop tools said member is certified for.
  5. Shop-certifier
    1. Must be an Officer.
    2. May use all shop tools said member is certified for.
    3. May certify others to use shop tools said member is certified for.
    4. Assist in teaching the Shop Certification classes with the Shopmaster.
  6. Project leaders
    1. Must be an Officer or senior member.
    2. Have additional responsibilities detailed in Article IV Section D.
  7. Emperors for Life
    1. Must be a past Officer for at least a year.
    2. Have no responsibility or authority in the Robotics Club.
    3. Are entitled to a lifetime subscription to the Officers email list and a free annual T-Shirt.
    4. Like all alumni, are encouraged to donate to the club according to their means.

C. Approval for Membership Status

  1. All members begin as junior Members.
  2. To become an Officer, see Article IV, Section B.
  3. To become a senior member or a project leader, one must submit a request to an Officer. The request will be voted on at the next Officer meeting. A majority of Officers is needed to approve the request.
  4. To become a shop-certifier one must submit a request to the Shopmaster. The request will be discussed at the subsequent Officer meeting, after which, the Shopmaster will either accept or decline the request.
  5. To become shop-certified, one must refer to the current guidelines of how to become certified on a shop tool as determined by the Shopmaster.

D. Responsibilities of Project Leaders

  1. Responsible for all project resources and adhering to all fiscal policies detailed in Article VI, Section D.
  2. Presiding over regular project meetings.
  3. Updating the projectís webpage on the Robotics Club website.
  4. Delegation of fiscal or other responsibilities to any project member.
  5. Ensuring that the project stores all materials in the designated area and keeps the Robotics Club work areas clean after use.

E. Membership Status Demotion

  1. The following points only apply if the member has not had membership terminated. Officers have the discretion to designate consequences as the situation warrants.
  2. For Officer removal, see Article V, Section D.
  3. To become demoted from a senior member, project leader or shop certifier, a majority vote of Officers is needed.
    1. Reasons for demotion from a senior member include leaving the Robotics Club unlocked or leaving junior members unattended.
    2. Reasons for demotion from a project leader include violation of any Robotics Club policy, not fulfilling a project leaderís responsibilities, or inappropriate actions or damage of Robotics Club property or reputation by the project group.
    3. Reasons for demotion from a shop-certifier include operating a shop tool dangerously or not following policy for certifying other members.
  4. Demotion from being shop-certified is at the discretion of the Shopmaster, or a majority vote of Officers. It is left to the discretion of the Shopmaster or Officers whether or not all shop-certification is revoked, or just a specific tool. If a member reports a shop violation, the accused member will have restricted access to the shop until the next Officer meeting and review of the evidence.

Article V. Officers

A. Criteria

  1. All undergraduate members are eligible for any position except the Graduate Student Representative.
  2. All graduate members are only eligible for the Graduate Student Representative position.

B. Election and Appointments

  1. An Elected Officerís term is from April 1st through March 31st of the following year. Elections for the following yearís Officers must be held before April 1st.
  2. A General Officer's term is from approval through graduation or deactivation.
  3. Required officers are President(s), Vice President(s), Treasurer, Webmaster, and Shopmaster and shall be Elected Officers as follows:
    1. These positions are appointed by a two-thirds vote in Officers for President, and simple majority for the others.
    2. A maximum of two people may be elected to any position as needed except for Treasurer.
    3. The total number of Presidents and Vice-Presidents may not exceed three.
    4. Each position must be filled by at least one person. No person can fill more than one position.
    5. To be considered for office, a speech must be delivered to Officers during elections indicating the memberís intended contributions.
  4. Recommended officers are Public Relations, Secretary, Electronics Master and Graduate Student representative and shall be Elected Officers as follows:
    1. These positions are appointed by a simple majority.
    2. A maximum of two people may be elected to any position as needed.
    3. To be considered for office, a speech must be delivered to Officers during elections indicating the memberís intended contributions.
  5. General Officers:
    1. These positions are appointed by a majority vote in Officers.
    2. The total number of Officers cannot exceed 15% of the General Body.
    3. To be considered for office, an essay must be delivered to Officers during elections indicating the memberís intended contributions.
    4. In the event that a deciding vote is needed, the President will make the final vote. If two Presidents disagree, then the Vice President will make the final vote.

C. Duties and Responsibilities

  1. General
    1. If there are two people in a position, these duties should be split up agreeably.
    2. Duties can be delegated to other Officers as needed.
    3. The following is not an exhaustive list of duties.
  2. President
    1. If there are two presidents, these duties should be split up agreeably.
    2. Preside over and schedule all General Body and Officer meetings. Officer meetings must be held weekly, while General Body meetings must be held at least twice a semester.
    3. Represent the Robotics Club on campus.
    4. Motivate the other Officers and members to accomplish as much as they can while having a good time over the course of the year.
    5. Assist in securing funding for all Robotics Club projects. This includes transitioning all funding contacts and information to the Vice President and soliciting funding for the StuCo course Fun With Robots.
    6. Update the Constitution and Rules as needed.
    7. Approve expenditures from Robotics Club accounts.
    8. Meet with the Treasurer monthly to discuss budget reports.
    9. Assist in writing the Joint Funding Committee (JFC) budget proposal, meeting with the JFC representative, and making appeals to JFC.
    10. Updating and maintaining a record of sponsors and donations on the public and private Robotics Club website.
    11. Organize a yearly Robotics Club Open House and an end of year report even if this is after their term is officially over.
    12. Send out emails to the Robotics Club member list.
    13. One President must be a current authorized signer for the Robotics Club on file with Student Activities.
  3. Vice President
    1. Ensure that all members have access to the club as their membership status entitles them. Ensure that all membersí club access expires on the appropriate date.
    2. Ensure that all members have access to the shop tools they are certified on. Ensure that all membersí shop access expires on the appropriate date.
    3. Assist in writing the Joint Funding Committee (JFC) budget proposal, meeting with the JFC representative, and making appeals to JFC.
    4. Volunteer and assist in Mobot and Mobot Open Houses.
    5. Assist in securing funding for all Robotics Club projects.
  4. Treasurer
    1. Make monthly budget reports which track all Robotics Club accounts and any donations made to the Robotics Club.
    2. Meet with the President monthly to present budget reports.
    3. Make approved purchases from a Robotics Club account upon the Presidentís or Vice Presidentís approval of expenditure.
    4. Update and maintain a record of all transactions on the private website.
    5. Writing the Joint Funding Committee (JFC) budget proposal, meeting with the JFC representative, and making appeals to JFC.
    6. Ensure every person in the member database has paid dues.
    7. Become responsible for the Tartan Card, if the Robotics Club has a Tartan card.
    8. The Treasurer must be a current authorized signer for the Robotics Club on file with Student Activities.
  5. Webmaster
    1. Maintain the public and private Robotics Club websites. This includes any page whose maintenance is not delegated to another Officer.
    2. Maintain and improve all electronic infrastructure, including servers and services.
    3. Maintain all the Robotics Club computers. This includes a monthly wipe of the desktops and other inappropriate material on the computers and ensuring that all computer hardware works, including internal and external peripherals.
    4. Recruit and supervise a general Officer to help with maintenance of Robotics Club computers and/or webpages.
    5. Maintain all Robotics Club data and automatic backups of data.
  6. Shopmaster
    1. Maintain and order all shop equipment and tools.
    2. Assemble orders for needed shop equipment and tools.
    3. Post and maintain a copy of shop rules.
    4. Enforce a policy of tool sign-out and replacing tools in the proper places.
    5. Must hold a Shop Cleaning meeting, in which general members are required to help clean the shop, at least once a semester. The Shopmaster may call additional Shop Cleaning meetings as needed.
    6. Organize and teach a Shop Certification class for all general members that would like to become shop-certified. A Shop Certification class must be held twice a semester, unless no members are interested in the class.
    7. Set, post and enforce shop hours.
    8. Enforce policies concerning shop work on thesis or commercial work.
    9. Maintain a safe working environment in the shop.
  7. Public Relations
    1. Write monthly updates on the Robotics Club and send to the ďFriends of the Robotics Club" mailing list. Archive a copy on the public website.
    2. Update the public and private Robotics Club websites. This includes any page whose maintenance is not delegated to another Officer.
    3. Publicize Robotics Club events.
    4. Inform Robotics Club Members of relevant job postings.
  8. Secretary
    1. Record minutes from Officers meetings.
    2. Publish minutes on the Robotics Club Wiki in reverse chronological order.
    3. Delegate an Officer to administer tickets with regards to the officers meetings.
  9. Electronics Master
    1. Maintain and order all electronic equipment and tools.
    2. Assemble orders for needed electronics equipment and supplies.
    3. Enforce policies concerning electronics work on thesis or commercial work.
    4. Maintain a safe working environment in the electronics area.
  10. Graduate Student Representative
    1. Represent the graduate students that are part of the Robotics Club by bringing up concerns or opinions of graduate students.
    2. Enforce the dues for thesis or commercial projects in the Robotics Club.
  11. General Officers
    1. Miscellaneous jobs as designated by all other elected positions.
    2. Volunteer and assist during Mobot and Mobot open houses.
    3. Update and maintain a list of SURG grants awarded.
    4. Update and maintain a list of Robotics Club publications.

D. Officer Removal

  1. An Officer may be removed from office by a three-fourths vote of Officers or senior members.
  2. Any member may file a petition for an Officer removal. To bring the vote to the Officers, three Officers must support this petition.
  3. The Officer is permitted to speak before the Officers and the general membership about the charges made concerning his/her performance.
  4. The Officer is not permitted to participate in the deliberation of the other Officers regarding the charges.

E. Vacancy

  1. If a vacancy occurs in the office of President and there is a co-President, the co-President shall assume the office for the remainder of the term. If there is no co-President, then the Vice President shall assume the office for the remainder of the term.
  2. If a vacancy occurs in any other office, the office shall be filled by a General Officer by a special election.

Article VI: Advisor

A. One advisor may be appointed by the Officers.

B. The advisor must be a member of Carnegie Mellon faculty.

C. Duties and Responsibilities

  1. The advisor has the option to attend any Officer meeting.
  2. The advisor should give advice or recommendations when solicited by Robotics Club members.
  3. The advisor will have no fiscal authority in the Robotics Club except if required to authorize tartan card purchases.
  4. The advisor shall receive a free t-shirt annually.

Article VII: Finances

A. Dues

  1. The Robotics Club may establish reasonable dues to be paid by all members.
  2. The amount of the dues will be determined by the Officers at the beginning of the Carnegie Mellon school year. The amount of dues will be based upon the expenditures of the previous year and the recommendations of the Joint Funding Committee.
  3. Dues must be paid by the September 30th of the Carnegie Mellon school year for past members who wish to continue membership. Past members that have not paid their dues will no longer have access to the Robotics Club.
  4. New members may pay dues any time; however, the membership term will expire September 30th of the next Carnegie Mellon school year.
  5. Officers will determine the hourly fee to use the Robotics Club shop for thesis or commercial projects at the beginning of the Carnegie Mellon school year.

B. Funds and Donations

  1. All money belonging to the Robotics Club shall be deposited and disbursed through a bank account established for the Robotics Club at the Student Activities Office or the Robotics Institute.
  2. All funds or monetary donations must be deposited within 24 hours after collection.
  3. All monetary donations to specific projects must be deposited into a Robotics Club account and a Robotics Club Officer must be notified.

C. General purchases

  1. All expenses from a Robotics Club account, excluding project money, must be approved by a current authorized signer of the Robotics Club as on file with Student Activities. The signer approving the purchase must sign and file the receipt according to the Treasurerís instructions. Alternatively, the Officer may email the Officer mailing list indicating approval of the purchase.
  2. The Treasurer will keep a record of all purchases made from a Robotics Club account.
  3. The Treasurer will be required to make a monthly budget report to present to the President, and if requested, the Officer meeting. This report will include each transaction during the month, the current balance of all accounts and the current balance of any project money in any account.
  4. The Treasurer is the only officer who may make a purchase on the Tartan Card.

D. Project purchases

  1. Project money may be deposited into any Robotics Club account.
  2. Project leaders may use any of their project money without authorization as long as they are within budget.
  3. Project leaders must notify the Treasurer of all purchases made with the project money if the money is in any Robotics Club account.
  4. Project leaders may authorize other people on the project to make purchases with the project money.
  5. The Treasurer is the only officer who may make a purchase on the Tartan Card.

Article VIII: Terms and Definitions

A. Approval shall consist of a majority vote of the respective body, with the President or Vice President casting the deciding vote as needed.

B. A quorum for Officers shall be satisfied by 80% of Officers being present.

C. A quorum for senior members shall be satisfied by 30% of the senior membership.


Article IX: Rules

A. Creation

  1. Any Senior Member or Officer may propose a Rule in writing at an Officer's Meeting.
  2. The Rule must be given a reasonable time for discussion.
  3. The Rule must be approved by a majority vote of all current Officers.

B. Dissemination

  1. All current members must be notified of a new Rule.
  2. All current and prospective members must also have access to a listing of current Rules.

C. Enforcement

  1. Officers may use any power granted by this document to enforce a Rule.

Article X: Amendments and Ratification

A. Amendments

  1. Amendments to this Constitution must be submitted in writing at an Officer meeting.
  2. Said amendments will be voted on at a subsequent meeting.
  3. In order to adopt the amendment, a vote of two-thirds of current Officers is necessary.

B. Ratification

  1. The constitution shall become effective upon approval by a three-fourths vote of Officers.
  2. The ratified Constitution will be submitted within one month to the Student Activities office.