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PSA Constitution & By-Laws

CONSTITUTION

Article 1: Name of the Organization

The name of the organization shall be “Pamplin Faculty Association” (PFA) of Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Article 2: Purpose

The purpose of this organization shall be to provide:

  1. Meaningful channels of communication and input among the Pamplin Faculty, Pamplin Administration, and University-level Faculty groups (i.e., the Faculty Senate and the College Faculty Association President’s group).
  2. A forum for study and discussion of matters of particular interest to the Pamplin Faculty.

Article 3: Membership

All full-time Pamplin Faculty members engaged primarily in teaching and/or research activities should be considered members of the PFA. This does not include Administrative Professional Faculty.

Article 4: The Executive Committee

The PFA Executive Committee will include all Pamplin Faculty Senators.

  1. The number of Senators for the College is determined in the Spring each academic year by the Faculty Senate. Pamplin is generally allocated one Senator per Department. However, some smaller Departments may share a Senator, or some larger Departments may have multiple Senators.
  2. Each Senator is asked to serve a 3-year term.
  3. Terms officially begin on the first day of the Fall semester and end on the last day of the Spring semester.
  4. Each Spring, Departments whose Senator(s) will be rotating out of their position in the following academic year must hold an election to determine that Department’s incoming Senator(s).
  5. One additional Faculty member may be elected by the PFA to represent this group in the Senate.
  6. From the group of Senators, one must be elected by PFA members to serve as the Pamplin Cabinet Representative. This individual will also serve as the PFA President.
  7. The PFA President/Pamplin Cabinet Representative is asked to serve a 1-year term.
  8. Additional roles (e.g., Vice President, Operations Officer) may be created and filled by Executive Committee members. Those serving in these roles should be elected by the PFA for a 1-year term.
  9. Department Heads shall not be eligible for election to the PFA Executive Committee.

Article 5: Amendments

This constitution may be amended by PFA members, provided the following conditions are met:

  1. Notice is given to the PFA Executive Committee of the intent to discuss an amendment at least two weeks prior to the meeting at which the amendment is to be discussed.
  2. The amendment is discussed at said meeting.
  3. A recorded vote of the PFA members is taken within two weeks following said meeting.
  4. All PFA members are notified of the amendment and given the opportunity to vote (e.g., via emailed online survey).
  5. At least two-thirds of votes cast are in favor of the amendment.

BY-LAWS

Article 1: PFA and Executive Committee Meetings

  1. The Executive Committee is encouraged to organize a PFA meeting to be held in the first month of each new semester and should distribute a tentative agenda to all PFA members at least one week in advance.
  2. PFA members are encouraged to suggest agenda items by contacting an Executive Committee member.
  3. Additional meetings can be held upon request. Examples include (but are not limited to) invited speakers, networking events, and meetings to address issues affecting faculty.
  4. PFA members (other than the Executive Committee members) are not required to attend any PFA meeting.
  5. PFA Executive Committee meetings separate from the regular PFA meeting are not required under ordinary circumstances.
  6. Separate PFA Executive Committee meetings (whether face-to-face or online) – including planning meetings - may be called during the semester to address any issues that arise.
  7. Where possible, all PFA Executive Committee members are expected to attend Virginia Tech Faculty Senate meetings.

Article 2: Duties of the President

The President of the PFA shall:

  1. Represent the PFA at Senate Cabinet meetings (another Executive Committee member may represent the President in her/his absence).
  2. Represent the PFA at College Faculty Association (CFA) President’s meetings (another Executive Committee member may represent the President in her/his absence).
  3. With input from the Senators, write a monthly (or quarterly/semesterly, if the timing is more efficient) PFA report summarizing relevant University-level discussions from Faculty Senate, Cabinet, and CFA Presidents’ group meetings. This report will be made available to the Dean and PFA members.
  4. Solicit input from PFA and Executive Committee members regarding College and University decisions affecting Faculty.
  5. When necessary, meet with the Pamplin Dean to discuss sensitive or complex issues from the PFA report (though regular meetings are not compulsory).

Article 3: Duties of the Executive Committee

The PFA Executive Committee shall:

  1. Set (with input from PFA members) and distribute the agenda for all PFA meetings.
  2. Develop and distribute any necessary surveys. Note that surveys should only be sent in rare circumstances (aside from annual elections) to avoid unnecessary burden to the Faculty.
  3. Where requested, partner with existing Pamplin organizations (e.g., special events team) to organize PFA-related events (e.g., speakers, networking events).
  4. Briefly summarize/present PFA reports in Department Faculty meetings and answer questions (where possible).
  5. Solicit input from Faculty (e.g., in Department Faculty meetings) regarding issues affecting them.
  6. Discuss with other Executive Members any relevant input from Faculty while maintaining Faculty members’ anonymity where desired. This may generally be accomplished via email, though synchronous meetings should be held for more sensitive or complicated issues.

Article 4: Department Senator Elections

  1. A Department’s outgoing Senator is responsible for holding a fair election of the Department’s Senator for the next academic year. S/he should hold this election no later than one month before the end of her/his outgoing term (the last day of the Spring semester).
  2. All Department PFA members should be given the opportunity to self-nominate and to submit an anonymous vote. All nominees should be given the opportunity to decline the position at least one week prior to the election.
  3. The nominee with the most votes shall take the position.

Article 5: College-Wide Elections

  1. The Executive Committee is responsible for holding a fair election of the additional PFA Senate representative, the PFA President, and other PFA Officer roles (e.g., Vice President, Operations Officer) where relevant.
  2. Candidates for the PFA Senate representative, President, and other PFA Officer positions can be nominated by oneself or others. All nominees should be given the opportunity to decline the position at least one week prior to the election.
  3. Only Department Senators are eligible to serve in the President or other Officer positions. This includes recently-elected Senators (i.e., those elected this Spring to begin next Fall).
  4. Elections for the PFA Senate representative, President, and other Officer positions should be held via online emailed survey (or similar means) to ensure that all PFA members have the opportunity to vote. The election should be held within the last month of the Spring semester, after all Department Senator elections are complete.
  5. The nominee with the most votes shall take the position.
  6. In the case of a draw, after allowing the nominees to voluntarily withdraw, a runoff election between those still in the draw will be held within one week of the prior election.
  7. All complaints against the manner in which elections were held should be directed to the PFA President, who will have the power to nullify the election if it is deemed unfair.

Article 6: Amending By-Laws

These by-laws may be amended by PFA members, provided the following conditions are met:

  1. Notice is given to the PFA Executive Committee of the intent to discuss a by-law at least two weeks prior to the meeting at which the by-law is to be discussed.
  2. The by-law is discussed at said meeting.
  3. A recorded vote of the PFA members is taken within two weeks following said meeting.
  4. All PFA members are notified of the by-law amendment and given the opportunity to vote (e.g., via emailed online survey).
  5. At least two-thirds of votes cast are in favor of the amendment.