Constitution of the Bates College Outing Club
-Updated May 4th, 2023-
-ARTICLE I: MISSION & VISION-
Section 1. Mission. The Bates Outing Club seeks to promote connection to the outdoors through student-led trips and activities; to provide the equipment and experience necessary to enjoy said trips and activities; and to protect the environment in which these activities take place. We embrace and celebrate all ways of connecting with the outdoors, and we encourage all Bates students to engage with nature both individually and in community.
We recognize that outdoor recreation has historically excluded, and continues to exclude people of marginalized identities and abilities, and we are committed to removing barriers to access and to facilitating spaces in which any member of the Bates community feels welcome and safe. By offering a wide variety of outdoor experiences to all Bates students, we hope to foster a community of inclusion for all races, gender identities, sexual orientations, abilities, socioeconomic status’ or any other identities.
We live, work, and recreate on the stolen homelands of the Amoscoggan peoples, whose descendants now live among the Wabanaki peoples, including the Abenaki, Penobscot, Passamaquoddy, Maliseet, and Mi’kmaq peoples. We encourage all those using this land to learn more at wabanakialliance.com.
Section 2. Vision. Our vision is to create a community that fosters a sense of belonging in the outdoors for all students regardless of race, gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or any other identity, as well as promotes stewardship of the lands we recreate on.
Section 3. Our Commitment to Equity. As a Campus Life-supported organization, we commit to all college policies that relate to students and student clubs and organizations. In the spirit of community accountability and collegiality, we agree to create spaces for discussions of injustice and inequity. We commit to engaging actively in dialogue with relevant parties (e.g., peer club and organization officers, campus offices, administrators, etc.) to effect positive change.
Our goal for the Bates Outing Club is to provide equipment and experience to break down barriers to access in the outdoors. We work toward this goal by offering a culture of risk awareness and management, peer mentorship, progression-based programs, leadership development opportunities, and super fun trips in the outdoors!
-ARTICLE II: MEMBERSHIP-
Section 1. Membership Policies. As a Campus Life-supported organization], we commit to abide by the Club/Org Membership Policy.
There are no requirements to become a member, just show up for a meeting! Any currently enrolled Bates College student can be a member of the Bates Outing Club. Click here to sign up for our Bates Engage Listserv!
Section 2. Creating Space for Community. In compliance with the Club/Org Membership Policy, this club/org is open to all students.
The Bates Outing Club community values all identities, interest levels, and skill levels. You do not need to have any outdoor experience to engage with the BOC. Although some more advanced trips are offered with a skill threshold, trip progression will provide opportunities for anyone to reach the level where they feel comfortable on an advanced trip.
-ARTICLE III: OFFICERS-
Section 1. Positions.
- Outdoor Program Manager (2)
- Social Media/Marketing
- Community Liaison Officer
- Equity & Inclusion Officer
- Head Trip Leaders-
- Rock Climbing
- Winter Sports
Outdoor Program Manager. (2/year) Responsibilities/duties:
- Run biweekly meetings on Wednesday evenings
- Set goals for the BOC at the start of the year and track progress on those goals throughout the year
- Work with the Coordinator of Outdoor Education and Programs and Head Trip Leaders to set a trip calendar at the beginning of each semester and assign leaders to trips
- Check in regularly with Leadership Team on activities and progress, and advise or direct as needed
- Communicate and liaise with other offices and organizations both on campus and in the wider community, and in doing so represent the BOC in a positive manner
- Meet weekly with the Coordinator of Outdoor Education and Programs
- Write once a semester updates to the BOC alumni community in conjunction with advancement
- Uphold and advance a culture of equity and inclusion within the BOC
- Provide student perspective when making decisions with COEP
Equity & Inclusion Advisor. The duties of the Equity and Inclusion Advisor are to assist in keeping all BOC sponsored events under an Equity & Inclusion lens to ensure that all Bates students feel welcome and celebrated, advise trip leaders on ways to make trips more accessible and inclusive, and foster an inclusive culture and community within BOC. The EIA will serve for a term of one semester.
Community Liaison. The duty of the Community Liaison is to ensure the continued connection of the Bates Outing Club to all Bates students as well as the greater Lewiston/Auburn community. Furthermore, the Community Liaison will be in charge of building relationships with local land stewards, other clubs and organizations across the Bates campus, as well as maintaining the relationship with the Maine Appalachian Trail Club. The Community Liaison will serve for a term of one semester.
Secretary. The duties of the Secretary are to keep minutes of all meetings and to post them where they are easily available to the student body; to keep a list of the members of the Outing Club Leadership Team; to attend to the necessary details in connection with elections, and to keep accurate records of attendance. Furthermore, the secretary shall at the beginning of each semester create an updated list of all active Leadership Team members. The secretary will serve a term of one semester.
Head Trip Leaders (HTL)– It is the duty of each HTL to oversee the planning and execution of trips in their respective field. The HTL serves as a resource for all trip leaders planning trips within their respective field. This includes, but is not limited to; working with trip leaders to ensure Bates Engage events are posted and emails are sent to the listserv, creating connection and community amongst trip leaders in their respective field, assisting in trip planning/itinerary building and fielding questions for trip leaders. Each HTL must lead two trips or activities (within their respective field) each semester. At least one of these trips must be intro-level. Head trip leaders will serve a term of one semester.
- Rock Climbing- The duties of the HTL for Climbing are; to oversee climbing-related activities/trips sponsored by the Outing Club; work in collaboration with E-Room staff to ensure the use of climbing equipment only by those with the requisite experience; be the point student coordinator with EVO Rock Gym; assist leaders in planning climbing trips; and other duties as assigned. The HTL for Climbing must lead two trips/activities per semester in their respective field. The HTL for Climbing will serve for a term of one semester.
- Surfing- The duties of the HTL for Water Sports are; to oversee surfing trips/activities sponsored by the Outing Club; collaborate with E-Room staff to keep surfing equipment in good shape; and to assist trip leaders in planning surfing trips; and other duties as assigned. HTLs for Surfing must lead two trips per semester in their field. The HTL for Surfing will serve for a term of one semester.
- Backcountry- The duties of the HTL for Backcountry Trips are; to oversee all backcountry trips/activities (no to very limited interaction with modern infrastructure– roads, buildings, running water, electricity, stores, etc– backcountry indicates a setting that is remote, undeveloped, and difficult to access) that are sponsored by the Outing Club; assist trip leaders in planning backcountry trips, collaborate with E-Room staff to ensure we have the necessary gear to lead safe backcountry trips, and other duties as assigned. HTL must lead two trip per semester in their field. The HTL for Backcountry Trips will serve a term of one semester.
- Frontcountry- The duties of HTL for Frontcountry Trips are; to oversee all BOC sponsored trips/activities that are in frontcountry areas (Frontcountry describes an area that is relatively easy to access, has a higher number of visitors, and allows for access to modern infrastructure); collaborate with E-Room staff to ensure that we have the necessary gear to lead safe frontcountry trips; assist trip leaders in planning frontcountry trips; and other duties as assigned. The HTL for Frontcountry Trips serves a term of one semester.
- Winter Sports- The duties of HTL for Winter Sports are; to oversee all BOC sponsored trips/activities that include Winter Sports; collaborate with E-Room staff to ensure that we have the necessary gear to lead safe winter trips; assist trip leaders in planning winter trips; and other duties as assigned. Winter Sports includes (but is not limited to) XC Skiing, Downhill Skiing, Snowshoeing, Tubing. The HTL for Winter Sports serves a term of one semester.
- Biking- The duties of HTL for Biking are; to oversee all BOC sponsored trips/activities that are include biking; collaborate with E-Room staff to ensure that we have the necessary gear to lead safe biking trips/activities; assist trip leaders in planning biking trips/activities; and other duties as assigned. The HTL for Biking serves a term of one semester.
- Paddling- The duties of HTL for Paddling are; to oversee all BOC sponsored trips/activities that are include paddling; collaborate with E-Room staff to ensure that we have the necessary gear to lead safe paddling trips/activities; assist trip leaders in planning paddling trips/activities; and other duties as assigned. The HTL for Paddling serves a term of one semester.
Section 2. Election and/or Selection of Officers.
- Students can apply for positions on the Leadership Team starting in the first week of April. All candidates who apply must meet briefly with the OPMs to ensure they have the necessary skills for the position.
- The election process begins after candidates are approved by the OPMs and they can then campaign at BOC meetings, over the Listserv, or any other appropriate way. After a short period of campaigning, an online election will be held over Short Term, managed by the BOC secretary. Once candidates are elected, they will be connected with the student who previously held their position to work out the transition.
- Transition periods between outgoing and incoming leaders will occur during the last 1-2 weeks of the Short Term/over the summer. New leaders will then take over their roles starting with the Fall semester.
-ARTICLE IV: MEETINGS & OPERATIONS-
Section 1. General Meetings.
- General meetings are one hour long
- General meetings are held biweekly
- A typical meeting agenda can be trip proposals, requests for gear, story telling, special guests/speakers, logistics questions/conversations, and other activities
- Meeting agenda is made by Outdoor Program Managers with input from the leadership team & Coordinator of Outdoor Education & Programs
- There is no mandatory structure to our meetings & everyone is welcome to speak or share. The Outdoor Program Managers start the meeting with general updates followed by updates from each member of the Leadership Team. Any decisions raised during meetings can be voted on and decided by a majority vote of all members. All decisions can ultimately be vetoed by the OPMs.
Section 2. Modes of Decision Making.
- Outdoor Program Managers make ultimate decisions for the Bates Outing Club with significant input from the Leadership Team as well as guidance from the Coordinator of Outdoor Education & Programs
- Navigating conflicts-
- If a conflict cannot be resolved by the parties involved, the Outdoor Program Managers will step in to assist in managing dynamics and work towards a solution that benefits both parties.
- When we have reached an impasse where it is clear the conflict will not be resolved among club/org members OR harm has occurred or continues to occur around this issue, we commit to contacting Campus Life to help us address and resolve it.
-ARTICLE V: FINANCES-
As a Campus Life-supported organization, we agree to abide by the Student Club Funding Rules.
- As a Campus Life Supported Organization, The Bates Outing Club has an allocated budget available to them. The Coordinator of Outdoor Education & Programs works to support students in balancing their budget throughout the year.
- The Coordinator of Outdoor Education & Programs oversees the budget to ensure responsible allocation of funds.
- Spending is managed/approved by the Outdoor Program Managers in tandem with the Coordinator of Outdoor Education & Programs
- The COEP will keep OPMs up to date on the state of finances so they can make well informed decisions for the club.
-ARTICLE VI: CLUB/ORG HISTORY & CONTINUITY-
Section 1. Club/Org History.
- Summary of events, programs, and/or activities that the club/org traditionally holds
- Clambake– BOC hosts a big lobster/clambake at Popham Beach– usually the second or third weekend in September
- Peaks Week– BOC trip leaders get as many Bates students on peaks across Maine and NH throughout the week– occurs late September/early October
- Baxter Weekend- student-led trip to Baxter State Park, happens at the end of Peaks Week!
- Puddle Jump– run as a part of Winter Carnival every year in February
- Trips are run consistently throughout the academic year, but traditions occur during the times listed above.
- Trip Planning Process
- A majority of our allocated budget is spent on programs (trips, activities, on campus events) and student staff while smaller amounts go towards leadership development and new gear/gear repair for the E-Room.
- Club/org history-
- The Bates Outing Club has a long history at Bates College. Started in 1920 by students, it has offered student-led trips since its founding. The Outing Club has historically had a strong alumni network that has helped the club grow and given advice and guidance throughout the years. In 2018, after an external risk management assessment, the BOC was changed from a student club to a Campus Life Supported Organization, which allowed the club more institutional support and resources. After two long years of COVID, the club has been rebuilding and digging roots deeper into the Bates community; making efforts to create more inclusive, diverse, and accessible programs that reflect the student population that we serve. We recognize that the work is never done, and will continue to strive for a club where all Bates students feel at home.
Section 2. Club/Org Continuity and Transition.
- Most documents are maintained and kept in the Bates Outing Club shared google drive.
- Transition takes place every semester when new students are elected to positions. Contact is created between the new leadership member and the preceding member and meetings are set up to set up a smooth transition process. Other orientations and training are offered by Campus Life throughout the year.
-ARTICLE VII: AMENDMENTS-
- This article should be reviewed yearly for changes.
- This document should be reviewed in the spring for amendments
- Amendments should be proposed by the leadership team, at monthly meeting
- Amendments should be adopted by consensus
- The amended constitution should always be uploaded to your Bates Engage files, and sent to Campus Life for record-keeping purposes.