The Constitution of the Communication Graduate Students’ Association

Faculty of Arts - University of Ottawa 
Last updated on 25 September 2020 

Name
The Association shall be known as “The Communication Graduate Students’ Association” herein referred to as the “CGSA”. In French, the Association shall be known as “L’ Association des étudiant(e)s diplômé(e)s en communication”, or “AÉDC”. Where possible, i.e. on social media, the Association will be known as the CGSAAÉDC.
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Aims

The aims of this Association are:

  1. To provide a medium for the organization of academic, social and extracurricular activities;

  2. To discuss problems common to the membership and to carry these to the appropriate University of Ottawa personnel when necessary;

  3. To serve as a liaison between the membership and other organizations, internal and external to the University of Ottawa including the Graduate Students’ Association des étudiant(e)s diplômé(e)s (GSAÉD) of the University of Ottawa.

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Membership

Membership of the Association consists of all registered graduate students, full-time and part-time, in the Department of Communication at the University of Ottawa.

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Executive

The CGSA executive committee shall be composed of up to 11 elected officers whose responsibilities are detailed below:

Co-President (PhD)
The Co-President (PhD) shall

  1. be elected from among PhD students and candidates;

  2. with Co-President (Masters/MComm), be responsible for organizing the Winter and Fall elections;

  3. be the spokesperson for PhD students and candidates;

  4. be bilingual (French/English);

  5. with the Co-President (Masters/MComm), conduct and chair all executive meetings;

  6. carry the concerns of the membership to particular faculty members when necessary;

  7. attend all meetings of the departmental assembly as the PhD student representative;

  8. be a signatory of the CGSA bank account; and

  9. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

Co-President (Masters / MComm)
The Co-President (Masters / MComm) shall

  1. be elected from among Masters / MComm students;

  2. with Co-President (PhD), be responsible for organizing the Winter and Fall elections;

  3. be the spokesperson for Masters / MComm students;

  4. be bilingual (French/English);

  5. with the Co-President (PhD), conduct and chair all executive meetings;

  6. carry the concerns of the membership to particular faculty members when necessary;

  7. attend all meetings of the departmental assembly as the Masters/MComm student representative;

  8. be a signatory of the CGSA bank account; and

  9. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

VP Finance
The Vice-President of Finance shall: 

  1. be responsible for the recording of the collection and dispersion of all monies and receipts; 

  2. prepare a financial statement for the CGSA executive at the end of every trimester, and for the general meeting in the fall; 

  3. be a signatory of the CGSA bank account; and

  4. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

VP Academic
The VP Academic shall be responsible for:

  1. be responsible for organizing academic activities for the membership;

  2. be responsible for organizing and coordinating the annual InterComm conference; 

  3. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

 

VP Social
The VP Social shall be responsible for:

  1. be responsible for organizing social activities for the membership;

  2. be responsible for gathering and communicating information about health and wellness initiatives internal and external to the University that may be of benefit to the membership; 

  3. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

 

VP Bilingualism
The VP Bilingualism shall: 

  1. be bilingual (French/English)

  2. be responsible for ensuring the University of Ottawa and its entities are compliant with their requirements relating to bilingualism. This includes but is not limited to: the CGSA, the GSAED, the Department of Communication, the Faculty of Arts, the University of Ottawa and any organization, association, research chair, etc., with whom CGSA members deal with;

  3. promote bilingualism through CGSA communications and activities;

  4. assist the VP Communications and the VP Community Affairs with their responsibilities to ensure the accuracy and prominence of English and French communications; 

  5. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

VP Communications
The VP Communications shall be responsible for:

  1. managing and coordinating the CGSA website (www.cgsaaedc.com);

  2. soliciting contributions for the CGSA website from students, faculty and other members of the community that are relevant and of interest to members;

  3. managing and updating the CGSA’s social media presence (including, but not limited to, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter);

  4. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

VP Community Affairs
The VP Community Affairs shall be responsible for:

  1. managing and coordinating all of the CGSA’s correspondence;

  2. building and maintaining relationships with stakeholders including but not limited to the GSAED, the Carleton Communication Graduate Caucus and the Michaelle Jean Centre for Global and Community Engagement;

  3. working in partnership with the University of Ottawa Alumni Office to strengthen alumni relationships; 

  4. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

 

First Year Representative (PhD)
The First Year Representative (PhD) shall:

  1. be the spokesperson for the first year PhD students;

  2. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

First Year Representative (Masters)
The First Year Representative (Masters) shall:

  1. be the spokesperson for the first year Masters students;

  2. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

 

MComm Representative
The MComm Representative shall:

  1. be the spokesperson for MComm students;

  2. assist in the promotion, planning and implementation of CGSA activities as needed.

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Elections

 

Upper Year Officers
New upper year officers shall be elected at the end of the winter trimester. Any member of the CGSA who is a full-time or part- time student is eligible for election. The organization of the election of the upper year officers shall be a responsibility of the outgoing Co-Presidents. Current officers who will be continuing studies for a full academic year may present themselves for re-election. First Year representatives may present themselves for upper year positions. 

First Year and MComm Officers
New first year and MComm officers shall be elected at the beginning of each fall trimester. Any member of the CGSA entering their first year study as either PhD student, a Masters student or an MComm student who is a full-time or part-time student is eligible for election. The organization of the election of the first year and MComm officers shall be a responsibility of the Co-Presidents. These positions will be vacant for the spring and summer trimester.

 

Absence of Candidates
In the absence of more than one candidate (per position), the outgoing Co-Presidents may omit the general meeting and transfer their responsibilities (before resigning) or submit the candidacies to a confidence vote from CGSA members, to their discretion.

 

Removal From Office
An executive committee member that is damaging the Association and/or not fulfilling his obligations can, at any time, be dismissed from the executive committee by submitting his dismissal to a non-confidence vote to other executive members. A majority of non-confidence votes is needed from both the executive committee and CGSA members in order for the dismissal to take place. 

Under special circumstances (e.g. the executive committee’s non-confidence vote is split, it is believed that more than one executive committee member is damaging the Association, etc.), any CGSA member can submit candidacies for dismissal to a non-confidence vote by their peers. In that case, a majority of non-confidence votes is only needed by CGSA members in order for the dismissal(s) to take place

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General Meetings

A bilingual (French/English) general meeting shall be held at the end of the Winter trimester to elect upper year officers and to adopt the financial statement presented by the Vice-President of Finance. 

Quorum
The quorum size of each general meeting shall be ten percent (10%) of the membership. Every effort shall be made to notify the membership of general meetings in advance. The Co-Presidents may call a general meeting at any time during the year. 

Minutes
Minutes of general and executive meetings shall be compiled and kept for a minimum of two (2) years.

 

Omission of Meeting
Under special circumstances, the Co-Presidents may omit the general meeting and the adoption of a financial statement. However, the executive committee is obliged to provide a cost statement (for the current school year) to any CGSA member, upon request. The committee must also communicate openly with CGSA members with the use of emails and/or other adequate means of communication. 

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Amendments to the Constitution

Further amendments and additions to this Constitution shall be made by the CGSA executive with a two-thirds majority and shall be ratified by a two-thirds majority of the membership of CGSA present at the general meeting. Amendments shall be posted at least one week before the general meeting. 

Under special circumstances, the Co-Presidents may, on their own initiative, suggest amendments/additions to this Constitution to members of the CGSA. If no general meeting is held, the Co-Presidents must share these suggestions with CGSA members via email and/or other adequate means of communication. Once the suggested changes are sent/shared, CGSA members have one week (7 days) to ask questions and provide feedback. 

Following that week, the Co-Presidents will then send/share a revised version (if applicable) and members will then have another full week (7 days) to indicate whether they approve or disapprove the changes. A majority of approvals is needed for the changes to be adopted. 
 

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