Constitution and By-Laws

of the Bates College Outing Club

-Ratified March 11, 2015-


Constitution of the Bates College Outing Club

Article I. Name

Section I. The name of this organization is the Bates College Outing Club.


Article II. Object

Section I. The Bates Outing Club seeks to promote outdoor and other recreational activities; to provide the equipment, expertise, and means necessary to safely enjoy these activities; and to protect the environment in which these activities take place.


Article III. Purpose

Section I. The purpose of this document is to establish general rules of procedure to guide the operations of the club.

Section II. A legitimate “vote” for purposes other than a constitutional amendment (see Article XVI) or a gear proposal (see Article XIV) is hereby defined to be a two-thirds majority of a quorum of the Council, where a quorum is defined as 20 physically present Council members. Furthermore, at least one of the President, the Vice President, the Secretary, or the Treasurer must be present to maintain quorum.


 Article IV. Membership

Section I. All members of the College community, including students, faculty, staff, and alumni, are members of the Club.

Section II. Persons other than those belonging to the above named groups may be admitted to membership by a vote of Council.

Section III. Membership in the Club entitles preference over non-members in Club—sponsored activities and services.


 Article V. Outing Club Council

Section I. A Council Member is a “voting” member of the Club who has met all criteria outlined in Section III below. All Council Members must be a currently-enrolled or employed Bates student, faculty, or staff.

Section II. The management and execution of the activities of the club shall rest with the Outing Club Council. The Council shall have final authority over all Outing Club sponsored activities and financial affairs.

Section III. Any Outing Club member wishing to ascend to the Council shall be required to attend three meetings, participate in a “work trip” in service to the club, share a story with the Club, and show a strong commitment to the purposes of the Club. Official recognition as a Council member comes with the presentation of the Club patch from the President. Ascendance to Council membership can occur no earlier than Fall Advance or mid-October, whichever comes first.

Section IV. Only Council Members may vote on Club-related issues.

Section V. Only Council Members may lead trips.

Section VI. All Members shall receive a copy of the Constitution upon ascending to the Council.


Article VI. Leadership

Section I. There shall be an “Executive Board” consisting of the President, the Vice-President, the Secretary, the Equipment Room Director, and the Treasurer.

Section II. There shall be a Board of Directors. The Board of Directors shall consist of the Executive Board, at least two Faculty or Staff Advisors, and the following student Council members:

1) Director(s) of Cabins and Trails (Two)

2) Director(s) of the Equipment Room (One)

3) Equipment Room Director In-Training

4) Equipment Room Staff Members (four)

5) Director(s) of Hickories (two)

6) Director(s) of Hikes and Trips (two)

7) Director(s) of Publicity (two)

8) Director(s) of Surfing (two)

9) Director(s) of Water Sports (two)

10) Director(s) of Environment (one)

11) Director(s) of Safety (one)

12) Webmaster (one)

13) Parliamentarian (one)

14) Treasurer-in-training (one)

Section III. All Outing Club Directors must also be Council Members. Furthermore, all Directors must be currently enrolled and physically present on campus in order to qualify for a Directorship.

Section IV. Exceptions to the number of students permitted to hold each Directorship may be changed on a temporary basis by a majority vote of the Council. Voting to authorize these changes may be made in-situ during the Directorship election process as such situations arise.

Section V. Changes to the number of positions within a single Directorship are in effect for only one semester. Permanent changes to Section II above will require a constitutional amendment.

Section VI. The Board of Directors shall be responsible to the Council.

Section VII. No Council member shall hold more than one position on the Board of Directors at the same time. Exceptions to the maximum number of Director positions an individual may hold may be changed on a temporary basis by a vote of a quorum of the Council. Voting to authorize these changes may be made in-situ during the Directorship election process as such situations arise.

Section VIII. Attendance at all Club meetings is mandatory for all directors. After two unexcused absences from Club meetings, a Director will be warned in writing by the Secretary. Upon the occurrence of a third unexcused absence within that semester, said Director will be dismissed subject to a review by the Executive Board. The person then has one week in which to petition the Council for reinstatement.

Section IX. The Secretary shall grant excuses from meetings for the following reasons: illness, emergencies, school functions, or religious holidays. Any other request may be granted at the Secretary’s discretion.

Section X. Any member of the Board of Directors may be removed from office by a majority vote of the Council. This vote shall be taken at a meeting whose purpose will be announced at least one week in advance.


Article VII. Duties of the Officers and the Directors

Section I. The duties of the Directors shall be to offer trips and instruction within their respective areas, to keep accurate records of all their activities, to present, when applicable, a written end-of-semester report including finances and logistics, be ready and knowledgeable about the goals and activities of their respective directorships, and keep a written statement of its policies.

Section II. It is the duty of each Director to organize at least two trips or activities (within their respective Directorship) each semester. At least one of these trips must be specifically for beginner-level participants.

Section III. The Duties of the President are to preside at all meetings; to call special meetings when necessary, or at the request of three members of the Board of Directors, or at the request of a Staff Advisor; and to serve as ex-officio member of all committees.

Section IV. The duties of the Vice-President are to assist the President and preside at meetings in the absence of the President, to be in charge of clambakes, and to organize Winter Carnival.

Section V. 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 Council; to attend to the necessary details in connection with elections, to keep accurate records of attendance; and to supply the Treasurer with copies of all motions pertaining to finance. Furthermore, the secretary shall at the beginning of each semester create an updated list of all active Council members. The Secretary shall also be responsible for maintaining a current list of all “Back-Country” and “Front-Country” certified leaders, as defined in Article XI. Furthermore, Parliamentary authority shall fall to the secretary in the absence of the Parliamentarian.

Section VI. The duties of the Treasurer are to keep an accurate record of the Club’s finances; to state the financial position of the Club as a whole at each meeting upon request; to compile an itemized account of the revenues and expenditures, subdivided by activity, for each Semester and Short Term for presentation to the President; to act as a liaison between Council Members and the College’s Accounting office in funding matters; to ensure the budget is used efficiently and responsibly; and to enforce the financial standards of the club as outlined in the by-laws. The Treasurer will prepare and submit, under the direction of the Executive Board and the Equipment Room Director, the Club’s annual budget request to the Representative Assembly of the Student Government, and to keep the equipment insurance policy of the Club up to date with current needs. Furthermore, it is the ultimate responsibility of the Treasurer to ensure that the Club ends each year with a balanced budget. The Treasurer will serve for a term of one year.

Section VII. The Treasurer-in-Training will be elected at the end of fall semester and serve as an assistant to the Treasurer for the Winter Semester. During this time, the Treasurer in Training will learn the requisite skills to serve as Treasurer for the following year.

Section VIII. The duties of the Director(s) of Cabins and Trails are to provide for the maintenance of all the trails the Outing Club has agreed to maintain, to provide for the maintenance of all shelters and other facilities that are associated with these trails; to administer Club land management programs; to cooperate in the running of any Club trips to theses trail facilities; and to actively engage in efforts to preserve these trails and the terrain they traverse. The Director(s) of Cabins and Trails will serve for a term of one semester.

Section IX. The duties of the Director of the Equipment Room are to have complete charge over all equipment, to see that all equipment is properly marked, numbered, and kept in good condition; to see that all equipment loaned is returned, or value and paid for; and to purchase or repair equipment with any unused portion of the operating budget at fiscal year’s end, in cooperation with the Treasurer, without recourse to future budgetary requests. The Director will train and supervise E-Room staff workers whose purpose it is to learn how to perform the previously delineated functions.

In addition, the E-room director, in cooperation with the E-Room staff, Board of Directors, and the Council, will oversee the budgeting and use of the E-Room Inventory Fund as stipulated in the Article XIII Section VI. The E-Room Director will serve for a term of one year.

Section X. The duties of the Director(s) of Hickories are to oversee activities related to skiing sponsored by the Outing Club and to ensure the proper maintenance of the clubs inventory of ski equipment. The Director(s) of Hickories will serve for a term of one semester

Section XI. The duties of the Director(s) of Hikes and Trips are to oversee trips that the Outing Club sponsors. The Director(s) of Hikes and Trips will serve for a term of one semester

Section XII. The duties of the Director(s) of Publicity are to publicize all activities run by the Outing Club and to organize Open Houses. The Director(s) of Publicity will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XIII. The duties of the Director(s) of Water Sports are to oversee water-related activities sponsored by the Outing Club and to maintain the Club’s fleet of boats and boat barn. Furthermore, the Watersports Director(s) are responsible for loaning out boats to individuals for trips. The Director(s) of Watersports will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XIV. The duties of the Director(s) of Surfing are to oversee surfing-related activities sponsored by the Outing Club and to maintain the Club’s inventory of surfing equipment. The Director(s) of Surfing will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XV. The duties of the Director of the Environment are to provide environmentally-related education and to organize action on environmental issues in connection with other environmental groups on campus. Their first concern will be the state of Maine and that the Outing Club employs environmentally sound practices. The Environmental Director should monitor the Club’s activities with regards to environmental impact, and create a report on the Club’s progress at the end of each semester. The Director of the Environment will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XVI. The duties of the Director of Safety are to promote safety awareness within the Club, to organize at least one Wilderness First Aid Course each year, or when demand is high enough for more, and to maintain first–aid kits. It is the responsibility of the Director of Safety to ensure that all trip leaders have obtained a minimum of Wilderness First Aid certification and Van certification (as stipulated in the By-Laws). Furthermore, the Safety Director is charged with maintaining an updated list of Council Members who meet the certification criteria for both WFA and Sawyer certifications. The Director of Safety will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XVII. The duties of the Director(s) of Climbing are to oversee climbing-related activities sponsored by the Outing Club, to maintain the Club’s inventory of climbing equipment and ensure its use only by those with the requisite experience, and to ensure the regular maintenance of the Merrill Climbing Wall. The Director(s) of Climbing will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XVIII. The duties of the Webmaster are to maintain the Club’s website and ensure that information remains relevant and up to date. Furthermore, the Webmaster, in conjunction with the Treasurer, is responsible for the electronic reimbursement form system. The Webmaster will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XIX. The duties of the Parliamentarian are to serve as the Club’s authority on the Constitution and its By-Laws, and be both ready and capable to respond to motions that call into question the constitutional legitimacy of any action of the Club. Furthermore, the Parliamentarian shall serve as the Club’s historian. In the absence of the Parliamentarian, these duties shall fall to the Secretary. The Parliamentarian will serve for a term of one semester.

Section XX. Failure to meet the above specified duties will result in a warning from the President, followed by a motion to impeach from any member of the Council.

Section XXI. Disciplinary issues that result in an appearance before the College’s Student Conduct Committee warrant an automatic suspension of Directorship privileges subject to review by the Executive Board.

Section XXII. All directors are allowed discretionary spending up to and including $50.00. Commensurate with the By-Laws on Equipment Purchases (Article XX, Section XX), any purchase exceeding $50.00 must be proposed to the Council by a vote.



Article VIII. Meetings

Section I. All Outing Club meetings shall be open to visitors, but they may not vote. In addition, any meeting may be closed by a vote of the Council.

Section II. The Council shall hold regular meetings each week on Wednesday at 6:30 P.M. Meeting times may be changed on a weekly basis by the President.

Section III. Special meetings may be called by the President.

Section IV. The Board of Directors may meet in closed session to discuss issues relating to the Club. The proceedings of all Director meetings shall be documented by the Secretary and made available for review by the entire Club.

Section V. The President shall preside over all meetings. In the absence of the President, these duties fall to the Vice President. In the Absence of the Vice-President, these duties fall to the Secretary.


Article IX. Parliamentary Process and Voting

Section I. All issues requiring a vote of approval/disapproval by the Council must be presented to the Council at least one week prior to when the voting is to take place.

Section II. Any action taken by either an individual or the Club may be challenged on the basis that said action is in violation of this Constitution. Such a challenge can be made by any Council Member at any time during a Club meeting. If such an opposition is motioned, it is the responsibility of the Parliamentarian to reference the applicable constitutional articles.

Any member may object to any action or event of the Club based on its constitutionality. Once an objection has been made, the action is considered “unconstitutional” and must be suspended. The suspension can be overturned only by a unanimous vote of all members of the Executive Board.


Article X. Nominations and Elections

Section I. Directorship positions shall be decided on based on a general election voted on by the Council.

Section II. The nomination process for Directorship elections is to be initiated at least one week prior to holding elections. Elections for fall semester Directors are to take place before the close of Winter Semester of the previous academic year. Elections for Director positions for the Winter Semester/Short Term must be held prior to the close of the Fall Semester.

Section III. Nominations for Directorships may be made from the floor or via e-mail at any time up to and including the day of elections.

Section IV. A nomination for directorship must be seconded by another member of the Council for an individual to be considered for election.

Section V. The elections for all officers and Directorships shall be preceded by an interview before the Council of all nominees for that position.

Section VI. It shall be the responsibility of the Secretary to create a ballot for the election process, to present the physical ballot at the time of voting, and to keep track of all nominees prior to holding elections.

Section VII. Counting of the ballots shall be conducted by the members of the Executive Board.

Section VIII. Any officer or director – except the President, who is to be replaced by the Vice-President – who does not return to school or loses office may be replaced by a majority vote of a quorum of Council. The newly elected officers and directors will take office the week following the election of Directors.


Article XI. Trips

Section I. A “Front-Country” trip is defined as any trip that takes place within the jurisdiction of professional emergency medical services, including but not limited to the Maine Rock Gym, established ski areas, beaches, etc.

Section II. A “Back-country” trip is defined as any trip that takes place beyond the range of conventional emergency medical services, and where wilderness medical protocols may be necessary.

Section III. The requirements to lead a “Front-Country” trip are 1) that the trip leader be a Council Member, and 2) that the leader be van certified.

Section IV. The requirements to lead a “Back-Country” trip are 1) that the trip leader be a Council Member, 2) that the leader be van certified, 3) that at least one participant be WFA certified, and 4) that the leader be properly experienced to safely and effectively lead that trip.

Section V. All trip leaders, regardless of type, must bring with them a properly stocked First Aid Kit.

Section VI. The qualification to lead any trip is at the ultimate discretion of the President. The President may deny a trip leader the right to lead a trip at any time on the basis of safety and/or experience.


Article XII. Advance

Section I. The President will propose the date that Advance is to be held, and plan and execute the aforementioned event.


Article XIII. Finances

Section I. The management, organization, and dispersion of Outing Club funds shall be the responsibility of the Treasurer at the discretion of the Council as it is interpreted within these By-Laws.

Section II. The Club will only finance activities that fall within the criteria as outlined in Article XI. Exceptional circumstances or expenditures not covered within this document may be presented to the Council for approval by a vote.

Section III. The Short Term budget shall consist of a minimum of $500. This sum shall be included in the annual budget. Any funds remaining at the end of second semester may be added to the Short Term budget.

Section IV. Use of the College’s credit cards for Club purchases must be authorized by a member of the Executive Board. Authorization must be given on a purchase-by-purchase basis and must be done in person to the card’s College overseer.

Section V.   All approved equipment purchases must be made within one month of their approval by the Council.

Section VI. There is to be an “E-Room Inventory Fund.” The size of this fund is to be determined during the annual budgeting process in the previous academic year, and the use of these funds is at the discretion of the Equipment Room Director.


Article XIV. Club Expenditures

Section I. “Equipment” is defined as a physical piece of gear that is used for Club related activities and trips. All Equipment owned by the Club is to be stored in either the Equipment Room or the Boat Barn.

Section II. A “Speaker” is defined as an individual or group of individuals brought by the Club to give a lecture on a topic related to the Mission and Purpose of the club.

Section III. A “Regular Trip” is defined as an event or trip sponsored by the Club that is under 2-nights/3-days in length. Regular Trips are open to all members of the Club. All trips must be announced to the Club at least three days prior. All weekend trips must be announced at weekly meetings. All trip announcements must be made via the Outing Club e-mail list, and registration is to be conducted on a first-come, first-served basis.

Section IV. A “Special Trip” is one that falls outside of the activities normally conducted by the club, including but not limited to extended trips (i.e. over academic breaks), special training courses, advanced-level trips that exclude participation on the basis of experience, or other Club sponsored events. Funds given to a “Special Trip” shall be voted on by the Council.

Section V. An “Established Event” is one that is historically rooted in Club tradition and which is subject to special funding considerations. Special Events are, explicitly, Fall and Spring Clambakes, the Fall Katahdin trip, Winter Carnival, Advance, Puddle Regatta, Iron Chef, and the Goodspeed-Sawyer Banquet. Events can be added to or subtracted from the preceding list at the discretion of the Council through the process of an Amendment.

Section VI. Equipment purchases for the club may be proposed by any member of the Council. All equipment purchases, with the exception of those falling under Article VII, Section XXII, must be approved by a vote of the Council. The proposer must submit a detailed report to the Council that includes the total cost, the place of purchase, and the exact purchase amount of said equipment.

Section VII. Equipment proposals must be made at least one week prior to holding a vote to give adequate time for consideration by the Council. Exception to the one-week waiting period can be made by a unanimous vote of the present Council.

Section VIII. An equipment proposal requires a simple majority vote of a quorum of the council in order to pass.

Section IX. The Club will provide van transportation (including the cost of rental as well as for gas) for trips with attendance of at least five people.

Section X. The Club may reimburse individuals for gas expenditures; however, the Club will not reimburse on a per mile basis when personal vehicles are used.

Section XI. Funding shall be granted as is necessary for the successful operation of any and all Established Events as defined by Section V above.

Section XII. The Club shall pay for additional costs (i.e. tolls, campground fees, parking fees, entrance fees, etc) associated with Regular Trips.

Section XIII. Trips more than 3/5ths filled prior to public announcement will not be funded by the Club.

Section XIV. A written form that provides a brief description of the trip, how many participants were in attendance, and a detailed accounting of expenses must be submitted to the Treasurer prior to any reimbursements taking place. Such a form is considered public information to the entire club and will be disseminated as such.


Article XV. Equipment

Section I. The Equipment Room is to be the responsibility of the Equipment Room Director.

Section II. Commensurate with the Mission of the Bates Outing Club, all equipment rentals will be free of charge to all members. A deposit of $5.00 per item will be required.

Section III. The Boat Barn will be the responsibility of the Watersports Director(s).


Article XVI. Amendments

Section I. Proposed amendments to the Constitution must be presented one week in advance of any vote taken upon them. All proposed amendments to the Constitution must be presented in writing to the Executive Board at this time.

Section II. All amendments to the Constitution and its By-Laws must begin with a motion from a member of the Executive Board. Any Council Member wishing to propose an amendment must therefore submit their proposal to a member of the Executive Board for endorsement.

Section II. Once proposed by a member of the Executive Board, the contents within this document may be amended or suspended by a two-thirds vote of a quorum of the Council (pursuant with Article III, Section II).   Furthermore, the entire Executive Board must be present for any amendments to be constitutional.

Section III. All amendments to the Constitution, both temporary and permanent, must be recorded and filed by the Parliamentarian.


Article XVII. Access

Section I. The Club controls three separate spaces on campus to which access is limited. These areas are the Boat Barn, the E-Room, and the Meeting Room.

Section II. Access to the E-Room is limited to the President, Vice President, and the E-Room director. Access to the E-Room workers and Directors of Hickories may be granted semester-to-semester at the discretion of the Equipment Room director.

Section III. Access to the Boat Barn will be limited to the President, the Vice President, the E-Room Director, the Surfing Director(s), and the Watersports Director(s).

Section IV. Access to the Meeting room will be limited to the President and the Faculty Advisor(s).

Section V. All Club access policies are subject to the College’s Access and Control Policy as stipulated in the Student Handbook.

-Respectfully Submitted and Ratified on January 25, 2012


Amendment I

If a gear proposal is in danger of being rejected based on price related to the quantity of the item proposed, the club may take the following steps:

i. Council members will conduct a regular vote on the initial proposal.

ii. If the proposal is not passed, the council member who suggested the initial purchase may move to decrease the quantity of gear that the proposal concerns, thereby reducing the price.

iii. This new proposal may be voted upon immediately and still requires a majority of the quorum of the council to pass.

The  council member who sponsored the initial proposal may only reduce the quantity of gear proposed for a new vote one time per proposal.


Amendment II

In addition to the Directorships listed in Article VI, Section II, there shall also be Director(s) of Cycling (2).


Amendment III

In addition to an in-person proposal submitted at least one week in advance of the date of voting, which will remain one week later than the date gear is proposed as outlined by Section VI of Article XIV, a proposer of gear must also submit, either in typewritten form or by email, the proposed cost, location of purchase, and potential benefits of said gear to the Secretary prior to the end of the meeting at which they will propose the gear in person. It is the Secretary’s duty to send a collated email in which each gear proposal is outlined and potentially a link, if the gear is to be purchased online, provided. The collated list may either be separate from, or incorporated in, the meeting minutes.