Policy 1302 – Constitution for the University Senate of Louisiana Tech University
Revision Date: 5/11/2015
Responsible Office: University Senate
ARTICLE I. NAME AND PURPOSE
Section 1. Name:
The elected representative body of the faculty and staff of Louisiana Tech University
shall be known as the University Senate.
Section 2. Purpose:
The purposes of the University Senate shall be: to promote the general welfare of
the University; to discuss and express views on matters of general concern to the
faculty and staff; to effect communication between the faculty and staff and the administration;
to initiate policy proposals; to make recommendations on policy proposals submitted
to it by the administrative officials of the University; and to request, through appropriate
channels, from the administrative officials of the University, information which might
influence policies and recommendations of this body.
ARTICLE II. ELECTION OF SENATE MEMBERS
Section 1. Eligibility:
Members of the faculty holding the rank of Professor, Associate Professor, Assistant
Professor, or Instructor, who are employed full-time; supervising teachers in A.E.
Phillips School; and non-classified personnel who are employed full-time by the University
as specified in Article II, Section 2(a) shall all be eligible for membership in the
University Senate. Supervisory personnel shall be ineligible for membership. Each
constituent unit shall advise the Secretary of the University Senate which positions
are ineligible for membership in the Senate by virtue of being supervisory personnel.
Section 2. Composition:
The composition of the University Senate shall be as follows:
- Representation and Number:
All of the faculty and staff membership, as defined in Article II, Section 1, shall
have full voting privileges for election of members of the University Senate.
A form will be sent to each certifying unit by August 1 with a return date no later
than August 15 requesting certification of the number of eligible faculty and other
unclassified personnel of the unit. Prior to the beginning of the fall quarter, the
University Senate President will notify each certifying unit head of the number of
Senators eligible to represent the unit.
Each of the seven constituent units designated herein shall be entitled to representation
on the University Senate by one member plus one member for each 15 full-time members
of the eligible faculty and staff or major fraction thereof, as of the opening of
the fall quarter:
- Applied & Natural Sciences
- Engineering & Science
- Liberal Arts
- Specialized Academic Services, consisting of the following units:
- Academic Affairs
- Financial Aid
- Institutional Effectiveness, Research, and Planning
- Administration and Facilities
- Research and Innovation
- Graduate School
- Student Affairs/University Advancement
- Computing Center
- Method and Time of Election:
Elections to fill all Senate positions for the following academic year shall be at
the beginning of the fall quarter in each of the constituent units, as defined in
Article II, Section 2. The election will be by secret ballot from nominations made
in an open meeting of the personnel of the constituent unit. The Dean of each academic
College, the Executive Director of the Library, and the Provost (as certifying officer
for Specialized Academic Services) shall each call the election meeting of the constituent
unit and shall certify the results to the Secretary of the University Senate. Constituents
shall be notified of the election at least one week in advance. Newly elected Senate
members will take office in September of the year of the election.
- Terms of Office:
Each University Senate member will be elected for a term of three years or to complete
an unexpired term. A University Senate representative may not be elected to succeed
himself/herself unless completing a term of two years or less.
A University Senate member serving as President or Vice President may continue to
serve beyond his/her original term of office; both of these offices are non-voting
When a Senator assumes the office of Vice President or President, his/her constituent
unit will declare a vacancy and must select a new voting Senator if any unexpired
portion of a term exists.
- Filling of Vacancies:
The certifying election official in each constituent unit will call a special election
to fill all vacancies occurring in the representation from that constituent unit.
The University Senate reserves the right to reapportion membership of the Senate by
amendment. The University Senate President shall apportion the University Senate members
according to Article II, Section 2 with confirmation of this apportionment confirmed
by the University Senate Executive Committee at the Executive Committee’s first meeting
of the academic year but no later than October 1.
- Temporary Vacancies:
A University Senate member who must be absent from two or more regular meetings because
of leave or a conflict with class sessions may select someone from the constituent
unit to serve as proxy and will notify the University Senate by a written notice to
the President of the University Senate.
- Excused Absences:
Senators who must miss University Senate meetings due to conflicts with class scheduling,
exams, other university meetings, or illness, should notify the Senate President and
Secretary in writing or by e-mail prior to the regularly scheduled University Senate
meeting, or within seven days afterwards. Such absences will be considered excused
absences. In cases where a Senator misses a meeting but sends a proxy in accordance
with Senate guidelines (as outlined in the Article II, Section 2, F), the absence
will count as an excused absence.
- Attendance Policies:
After three unexcused absences by a Senator during the course of one school year,
he or she will be notified in writing that he or she has missed three meetings. Said
notification will include a statement regarding University Senate policies regarding
replacement of Senators with excessive absences, as outlined by the Louisiana Tech
University Senate Constitution.
- Removal and Replacement of Senators Due to Nonattendance:
In cases where a Senator has five unexcused absences during a year, the Senator and
the certifying election official in his or her constituent unit will be notified that
the Senator is to be replaced. The certifying election official for that unit shall
have 30 days to replace said Senator, and notify the Senate President and Senate Secretary.
The newly elected Senator will complete the remainder of the original Senator’s term.
- Appealing a Removal Due to Nonattendance:
If a Senator wishes to appeal his or her removal from the University Senate, he or
she must notify the President of the Senate and the Secretary of the Senate within
10 days of the notification of removal sent by the University Senate. The Senate President
will then arrange to have the Senator appear before the Executive Committee at that
body’s next regularly scheduled meeting. The Executive Committee will hear the Senator’s
case, and then vote by secret ballot. The Senator may retain his or her seat with
a two-thirds vote of approval by the Executive Committee.
ARTICLE III. OFFICERS OF THE SENATE
Section 1. Officers and Election:
The officers of the University Senate shall be Past-President (non-voting), President
(non-voting), Vice President (non-voting), Parliamentarian, and Treasurer. All offices
are subject to a one-year-term. Election shall be held at the last University Senate
meeting of each spring for all officers except Past-President with such terms of office
to be effective July 1st. Any current member of the Executive Committee, or any past
member of the Executive Committee who is currently serving as a Senator, may be a
candidate to the Office of President. Any Senate member may be a candidate to the
Offices of Vice President, Parliamentarian or Treasurer. The President and Vice President
may be re-elected to subsequent one-year-terms of office, up to twice, for a total
maximum of three consecutive terms per office. Any person vacating the office of President
may not be a candidate for the office of President or Vice President for the next
three elections. Any person vacating the office of Vice President may not be a candidate
for the office of Vice President for the next three elections but may be a candidate
for President. The Parliamentarian and Treasurer may be re-elected to subsequent one-year-terms
of office to the extent their elected University Senate terms allow. Upon the election
of a new President, the Office of Past-President shall be filled by the out-going
President and shall service as Past-President for one term only.
Section 2. Duties:
The duties of the officers noted in Section 1 above will be those that normally pertain
to the office held; the University Senate will arrange for competent secretarial assistance
to fulfill the duties of Secretary. The University Senate Past-President will provide
advice and assistance in the continuity of the jobs of President and Vice President;
the University Senate President may appoint committees as he/she deems necessary to
conduct the business of the University Senate; the Vice President shall perform those
duties assigned by the President.
Section 3. Executive Committee:
The Executive Committee shall consist of the officers and one Senator from each of
the seven constituent units specified in Article II, Section 2. The University Senators
from each of the seven constituent units shall select their representative to the
Executive Committee prior to the first Executive Committee meeting of the fall quarter.
The duties and responsibilities of the Executive Committee are to set the agenda
for regular University Senate meetings and to serve as tellers for voting on amendments
to this Constitution. The Executive Committee may also be called into emergency session
to set the agenda for called meetings of the University Senate.
ARTICLE IV. MEETINGS:
Section 1. Frequency:
The University Senate shall meet monthly, September through May. The time and place
of such meetings shall be determined by the University Senate. The Executive Committee
shall meet at least one week prior to each regular University Senate meeting.
Section 2. Executive Sessions:
The regular meetings of the University Senate shall be open to all members of the
faculty and staff. However, the University Senate reserves the right to hold executive
(closed) meetings if so desired by a majority vote of the University Senate members
present and voting. Executive sessions shall be for deliberation and discussion only.
Section 3. Quorum:
A majority of the elected representatives to the University Senate shall constitute
a quorum. A quorum shall be necessary to hold a meeting of the University Senate.
Section 4. Minutes:
Minutes of the proceedings of the University Senate will be distributed to each represented
faculty and staff member through the regular process used in distributing written
information to such faculty and staff. This procedure will be recognized as formal
notification of the represented faculty and staff.
Section 5. Conduct of Business:
All meetings of the University Senate shall be conducted according to parliamentary
law as set forth in Robert’s Rules of Order (latest edition will prevail) except where
a contrary rule is provided by this Constitution, or by any standing rule of the University
Senate. The University Senate may agree upon certain rules to act as guides in the
ordinary process of the conduct of business. These rules will be recorded and will
be called Standing Rules of the University Senate. Each of these rules will be added,
deleted or modified by a two-thirds vote of the members present.
ARTICLE V. REPRESENTATION AND RESPONSIBILITIES
Section 1. Representation:
The University Senate shall represent the faculty and staff in all matters as states
in Article I, Section 2.
Section 2. Responsibilities:
The University Senate shall have the responsibility of representing the faculty and
staff in all matters pertaining to the welfare of the University. The University Senate
shall discuss and express views on matters of general and specific concern to the
faculty and staff. The University Senate may initiate policy proposals and forward
them to the administrative officials of the University for their consideration.
The University Senate may make recommendations on policy proposals submitted to it
by the administrative officials of the University. The University Senate may express
the opinion of the faculty on any and all matters proposed and expressed by the administrative
officials of the University.
Section 3. Agenda:
All matters brought before the University Senate shall be introduced by a member of
the University Senate. Communications to the University Senate from administrative
officials shall be introduced through the President or Vice President of the University
Section 4. Consultants:
The University Senate may invite to its meetings consultants needed for the conduct
of its business.
ARTICLE VI. AMENDMENTS
Section 1. Origin:
Amendments to this Constitution may be proposed either by a two-thirds vote of the
University Senate or by a petition signed by at least seventy-five members of the
represented faculty and staff and filed with the Secretary of the University Senate.
In either method of proposal, an amendment must be approved by a two-thirds vote of
the faculty and staff members voting thereon and by the President of the University.
Section 2. Publication:
Copies of any proposed amendment shall be circulated in the form of a written ballot
by the Secretary of the University Senate to all members of the represented faculty
and staff so that it may be approved or disapproved; these ballots must be returned
to the Secretary within ten days of their having been sent in order for the returned
ballot to be counted as legitimate.
ARTICLE VII. ADOPTION OF THIS CONSTITUTION
This Constitution shall be adopted upon approval by an affirmative majority of the
represented faculty and staff voting thereon and the approval of the President of
the University. The Executive Committee will serve as tollers for the voting on the
adoption of this Constitution.