Constitution of the Kent State University, Department of Psychology, Multicultural and Diversity Committee 

Article I. Name 

The name of this organization shall be the Kent State University, Department of Psychology, Multicultural and Diversity Committee. The shortened name shall be the Multicultural Diversity Committee (MDC). 

Article II. Mission and Goals
Section I. Mission Statement

The mission of the Kent State University, Department of Psychology, Multicultural and Diversity Committee is to make a positive difference in the education of all students within this department through the promotion of an atmosphere of multicultural acceptance, competence, and diversity. This will be accomplished through activities of a scholarly, social and service orientation that will contribute to students’ future success as informed researchers, teachers and practitioners of psychology.

This committee adopts the definition set forth by the Office of Diversity, Kent State University. Therefore, we define diversity to include important human differences such as gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, economic status, disability, age, religion, and sexual orientation.  

Section II. Goals  

General:

  1. Generate activities to promote & maintain diversity in the department
  2. Develop / maintain a supportive environment that fosters the academic and personal development of a diverse student body
  3. Through our activities, our hope is to support the department’s efforts to increase the diversity of the graduate students.  

Scholarly:

  1. Enhance the psychological training of KSU psychology doctoral students through experiences related to multiculturalism
  2. Provide a rich interdisciplinary forum for discussion of ideas
  3. Provide an encouraging environment to discuss issues, knowledge, and ideas relevant to multicultural psychology 

Social:

  1. Provide a social outlet for students interested in learning about and experiencing different cultures
  2. Connect Kent State University psychology students with a regional and national network of students interested in multicultural issues and supporting a diversified student body

Service:

  1. Form a link to undergraduate students to facilitate their pursuit of graduate study in psychology and to expand the graduate pipeline for multicultural students
  2. Provide the opportunity to get involved in legislative advocacy
  3. Provide a vehicle for community outreach and connectedness  
Article III. Membership
Section I. Selection Process

Individuals currently serving on this committee have been selected by the Chair and the vice-chair, to hold office for a period of one year (2006-2007). Subsequent officers will be elected during departmental elections during the fall of each academic year.  

Section II. Election Process

Elections for all officers will be held each fall in conjunction with other student departmental elections (e.g., GSS Rep, CTC/ETC Rep). A special election shall be held should any officer position be left vacant before the end of a regular term of office. Officers can be reelected to the same office if they accept a nomination for a second term.

Section III. Resignation of officers

Upon notification of intent of an officer or other official MDC representative to resign, the Chair is to investigate circumstances surrounding the resignation. Any withdrawal from office must be submitted verbally and in writing to the Chair. Remaining officers will share responsibilities until the position is filled. Elections to fill the vacant position will be held as soon as possible.

Section IV. Remediation Procedures for officers

Grievances against an officer of the committee will be first handled by the Chair. If the grievance is not resolved, a three way consultation between the Chair, the faculty adviser and officer in question will follow. Grievances against the Chair of the committee will be handled first by the Vice-Chair. If the grievance is not resolved, the Vice-Chair will engage in a three way consultation between the Vice-Chair, Chair and the faculty adviser. If the grievance is still not resolved, expulsion procedures will follow. 

The Multicultural and Diversity Committee shall expel any officer, by majority vote, for conduct, behavior, or actions that merit expulsion from Kent State University. In addition, membership on the committee may also be revoked if the officer fails to fulfill their role as a member of the committee. Expelled committee officers shall surrender all benefits and privileges associated with being a committee officer.  

Section V. Contesting Expulsion

An officer will be able to contest expulsion from the committee within 15 days following written notification from the Multicultural and Diversity Committee Chair. The officer shall contest the expulsion before the entire Multicultural Diversity Committee, including the faculty advisor. If the expulsion is reversed, the individual will be afforded probationary status for a period of 1 month, at which time they will be reinstated as an officer in good standing. If the expulsion is upheld (by majority vote), the affected officer must relinquish his or her position as officer but may freely participate in all Multicultural and Diversity Committee sponsored functions.  

Article IV. Officers
Section I. Requirements 

The officers of this organization shall meet the following requirements: 

  1. Be in good academic standing with the university; 
  2. Attend all official Multicultural and Diversity Committee meetings and, when unable to attend, notify the Chair in advance. Moreover, each officer shall find a replacement, with approval of the Chair, for their duties and responsibilities in case of absence. Inordinate absences will require a review of an officer’s current status.
  3. Be an active member of the committee by completing projects related to their elected position
  4. Be supportive of the mission and goals of the Multicultural and Diversity Committee
  5. Past officers shall remain available for mentorship for several months following their absence (email contact is sufficient)
Section II. Executive Committee and Duties

The Multicultural and Diversity Committee shall consist of six officers: the Chair, the Vice-Chair, the Vice-Chair of Legacy/Secretary, the Vice-Chair of Public Relations and Social Affairs, the Vice-Chair of Recruitment and Retention, the Vice-Chair of Finance/Treasurer. All officer positions shall be open to all graduate students within the Department of Psychology. Officers will be elected on an annual basis. Officers of this organization shall fulfill the following duties respective of their positions:

The Chair 

The Chair shall preside over all general and/or special meetings of the committee. The Chair is the official spokesperson for this committee. The Chair shall authorize any expenses made by the committee in consultation with the Vice-Chair of Finance/Treasurer. The chair shall work on developing networking opportunities for the committee and its members within national and regional organizations. The Chair shall coordinate the activities of other officers and will make decisions regarding the implementation of committee activities under the advisement of the Vice-Chair and the entire committee. The Chair will also maintain the integrity of this committee by handling grievance procedures involving all committee officers should they become necessary. Furthermore, the Chair may appoint and/or create any needed executive offices and sub-committees not already provided for, with the approval of the majority of the active members present at a stated or special meeting.

The Past Chair 

The Past Chair shall assist the current Chair in upholding the mission and integrity of the Multicultural and Diversity Committee. His/her primary role will be that of advisor (maintain institutional memory). He/she will also delegate tasks/direct projects as necessary, at the behest of the current chair. The Past Chair will also have voting privileges afforded to all regular officers. Given the mentorship aspects to this position, it is necessary that the Past Chair be available during the year following their service as Chair to offer assistance to the current Chair on an as needed basis. 

The Vice-Chair 

The Vice-Chair shall assist the Chair in coordinating committee projects. In the event that the Chair is unable to attend committee meetings, the Vice-Chair will function as the chair in his/her absence. His/her primary role will be to achieve competence in the roles and duties of the Chair and be mentored into the role over the course of the year. The Vice-Chair will become Chair during the next year. He/she will work together with the Chair to uphold the mission and integrity of this organization. He/she will also delegate tasks/direct projects as necessary, in consultation with the Chair. The Vice-Chair will also be tasked with handling grievance procedures involving the Chair should they become necessary.  

The Vice-Chair of Legacy/Secretary

The Vice-Chair of Legacy will take minutes of all the meetings, and post the minutes on the listserv and website (in the absence of the Graduate Secretary). Coordinate the documentation of all events (events, meetings, etc.) through photographs and written documentation. The Vice-Chair of Legacy will maintain the listserv and upload photos, minutes, and historical information. He/She maintains all legacy aspects of the website. Together with other officers he/she will coordinate association activities and delegate tasks/direct projects as necessary. 

The Vice-Chair of Public Relations and Social Affairs

The Vice-Chair of Public Relations and Social Affairs will coordinate fundraising and social events, seek sponsorship from various businesses and organizations. He/She will maintain public relation and social affairs aspects of the website and together with other officers will coordinate association activities and delegate tasks/direct projects as necessary.  

The Vice-Chair of Recruitment and Retention

The Vice-Chair of Recruitment and Retention will foster the recruitment of diverse individuals into psychology graduate programs, including ethnic minorities and international students. He/She will coordinate and supervise mentoring of diverse students in psychology, and address the concerns of student members, including concerns with their respective programs and/or this organization. He/She will maintain recruitment and retention aspects of the website and together with other officers will coordinate association activities and delegate tasks/direct projects as necessary.  

The Vice-Chair of Finance/Treasurer

The Vice-Chair of Finance will maintain accurate and current financial records. He/She will make all necessary disbursements. He/She will locate sponsors and will otherwise be involved with the procurement of additional extramural and intramural funding sources, and maintain finance/treasurer aspects of the website. Together with other officers he/she will coordinate association activities and delegate tasks/direct projects as necessary. 

Article V. Communication

Each month, each officer of the MDC will prepare a brief report (format forthcoming) on their activities during that past month. This report will include information about 1. Continuing and completed projects (e.g., the evaluation data), 2. Future projects, 3. Budgetary concerns, and 4. Suggestions to improve the committee. The Chair of the committee will use this information to prepare a brief report regarding MDC activities and goals that will be disseminated to the MDC officers, Psychology Department Faculty, and all graduate students in the department. In addition to monthly reports, each officer will keep the MDC abreast of their ongoing projects and activities. Typically, this will be accomplished through email communication (i.e., listserv)

Article VI. Program Evaluation

All MDC sponsored programs will be evaluated on an ongoing basis for their effectiveness and appropriateness to the mission of the MDC. An evaluation form will be disseminated before each of the events to be completed by the attendees. These data will be complied by the MDC and used to improve future programs. Demographic data will also be complied to determine if we are reaching our target audiences.  

Article VII. Advisor Expectations
Section I. Role of Primary Advisor

The faculty advisor plays an integral role in helping this organization create an environment that is productive, safe, enjoyable, and educational. The faculty advisor shall meet with the executive committee at least once per semester and, where possible, attend regular meetings. Moreover, the faculty advisor will serve as a departmental liaison and assist in the procurement of departmental and extramural funding. Additionally, the faculty advisor shall assist in developing realistic goals for the academic year. The faculty advisor should be aware of the University Student Rules and other institutional guidelines that establish expectations for student behavior and activities. 

Section II. Replacement

If for any reason the advisor is no longer willing and/or able to fulfill their responsibilities, they will formally communicate this to the Multicultural and Diversity Committee in writing. The Multicultural and Diversity Committee will then nominates 1 or 2 names (ranked ordered) to the department chair. Based on the committee’s recommendations, the department chair decides who she/he will ask to serve as faculty advisor.

Article VIII. Committees

Sub-committees shall be suggested by the Chair or other Committee Officers serving on the Multicultural and Diversity Committee. A motion to create a sub-committee must include the purpose of the committee, the method for the selection of a chair, the method for the selection of members and the deadline before which the committee will report back to the MDC Chair. The Multicultural and Diversity Committee shall appoint the chair of all sub-committees. The Chair of each standing sub-committee may appoint any undergraduate and graduate student in good standing with the University as a member of his or her sub-committee. Multicultural and Diversity Committee officers may, at their own discretion, serve on a sub-committee. 

Article IX. Meetings
Section I. Multicultural and Diversity Committee Meetings

There shall be a general meeting held at least once per month or as often as needed and should be organized by the Chair. General meetings shall be open to the Officers of the Multicultural and Diversity Committee, the Faculty Advisor, and the Graduate Secretary. Dates for Multicultural and Diversity Committee meetings shall be set by the Committee in accordance with officer schedules. All officers are required to attend all Committee Meetings.  

Section II. Meeting Agenda

All members shall email the Secretary with items they would like to put on the agenda. The Secretary will then send the Chair and Vice-Chair a complied list of these items at least two days before the meeting. The meeting agenda will be set by the Chair.

Article X. Amendments, Additions, and Ratification
Section I. Amendments

Amendments and additions may be made to this Constitution by two-thirds majority vote of the officers in attendance at a general meeting. Proposed amendments and additions must be made available to the Multicultural and Diversity Committee at least two weeks prior to a general meeting. All appropriate revisions shall be incorporated into the body of the Constitution in their appropriate place.  

Section II. Revisions

The Constitution must be reviewed by the Multicultural and Diversity Committee every year and re-signed by the officers of this organization.