Team Constitution

VU Ballroom Constitution
The mission of VU Ballroom is to provide a fun, affordable means for students of Valparaiso University and members of the community to experience the art of ballroom dancing, to develop members’ ballroom talents, and to improve the social and educational environment of Valparaiso University.

I.    Membership
A.      People will not be denied membership to VU Ballroom based on race, color, gender, age, disability, national origin/ancestry, sexual orientation, or religion
B.      Social Team
1.   All individuals who attend at least one event and are recorded on the sign-in sheet are considered a Social Team member of VU Ballroom
2.   Membership status must be renewed each year
    a. A social team member may ask to be removed from the list serve at any point
    b. Contact list will be updated at the beginning of each school year.
C.      Competition Team
1.   Competing members obtain membership through expressing interest to the Team Captain(s)
2.   Continued competing membership requires a minimum of four hours of practice per week and attending weekly lessons taught by the Team Coach(es) or attending at least two workshops by a team approved coach each semester.  One of the four required hours must be at designated practice times with the team. Any exceptions regarding hours or missed lessons must be approved at the discretion of the captains.
a. For members with private lessons with the team coach(es), if a member needs to miss a private lesson they must give notice to the Captains, Lessons Coordinator, and the team 48 hours in advance to find a replacement person to take the lesson.  If no team member takes the slot, or if they fail to give 48 hours notice, they will need to pay for the lesson slot.  If two lessons are missed without enough notice or are unexcused, the privilege of a private lesson slot will be revoked. If four lessons are missed, even excused, the private lesson slot will be revoked. Emergency situations will be taken into account at the discretion of the Captains and Lessons Coordinator. The payment for the missed lesson is due to the Treasurer within one week of the missed lesson, and then the Treasurer will reimburse the replacement person for the lesson, or pay the coach, and notify the team via the team email that they have made the payment.
b. For members who participate in the group lessons or workshops, if a member needs to miss a group lesson or workshop they must give notice to the Captains and Lessons Coordinator 48 hours in advance. If they fail to give 48 hours notice, they will need to pay for the lesson.  If two lessons or workshops are missed without enough notice or are unexcused, funding for the next competition will be revoked. Emergency situations will be taken into account at the discretion of the Captains and Lessons Coordinator. The payment for the missed lesson is due to the Treasurer within one week of the missed lesson, then the Treasurer will pay the coach. Or, the individual will pay the coach directly, and notify executive board via the team email account.
c. Any changes made to lessons at any point must be communicated to the Lessons Coordinator.
d. Competitive Team-sponsored workshops taught by a team-approved coach may act as a substitute for the semester’s lessons
i. Captains retain the right to designate “team-approved coaches”
ii. Team members must notify the Lessons Coordinator 48 hours in advance if they choose to substitute a private/group lesson for a workshop.
e. Any further disciplinary action for missing lessons or workshops will be at the discretion of the Captains and the Lessons Coordinator and include but are not limited to: revoking of team funding, payment of missed lesson or workshop, and removal from the team.

3.  Current team members must practice at their competing dance level until they have been approved by the Captains to move up to the next level as stated in Article II Section C
4.  Failure to fulfill Competition Team membership requirements in the four weeks prior to a competition makes the individual ineligible for financial assistance for that competition. Members will receive one formal team policy warning via email per semester before losing funding.

II.    Competitions
A.      VU Ballroom, through the Vice President, organizes registration, travel, and accommodations
1.   The Vice President collects all necessary information from Competition Team members
2.   The Vice President, in partnership with the Treasurer, sets deadlines for submission of intent to attend and registration information
3.   The Vice President with the Team Captains verifies that Competition Team members are eligible to compete (as set forth in Article I, Section C)
B.      VU Ballroom, through the Treasurer, organizes payment for registration, travel, and accommodations
1.   The Treasurer sets deadlines for payment of necessary fees
2.   Costs beyond VU Ballroom’s budget for that competition are split among attending competitors
3.   Individuals deemed ineligible by the Vice President and Team Captains may attend competitions, but may be charged for all competition fees incurred by VU Ballroom on his or her behalf
C. If a competitor wants to move up a level for the next competition they must email the team account two weeks before the competition for Captains’ approval.
1. Consistently placing means placing at two consecutive team funded competitions in the style that is requested
D.      Withdrawal
1.   A competitor may withdraw from a competition before the deadline set forth by the Vice President without penalty
2.   If a competitor withdraws after the deadline, they are responsible for all expenses incurred by VU Ballroom on his or her behalf, except in extreme cases as approved by the Vice President
E.       Additional Competitions
1.   Team members may attend additional competitions, but they will not receive any funding from VU Ballroom
2.   Team members wishing to compete under VU Ballroom's name at additional competitions must receive the approval of the Team Captains.

III.    Executive Board and Coordinators
A.      The Executive Board is given sole power over all decisions not specifically granted to general members in this constitution
B.      Executive Board members and coordinators will hold terms of one year
C.      All officers are required to maintain information regarding their positions in a format that can be passed on to the next incoming officers  
D.      All exiting officers are required to have a transition meeting with the incoming officer.
E.      Eligibility
1.   In order to be considered eligible, a member must have been a part of VU Ballroom for at least two semesters and be a student of Valparaiso University, excluding Website Coordinator and Camera Coordinator, who must have been part of VU Ballroom for one semester and be a student of Valparaiso University.
2.   Members cannot hold more than one position for the same term with the exception of the Camera and Website coordinators
3.   Should no eligible person be available or willing, these requirements are waived
F.      Duties of Officers and Coordinators
1.   President
a.   Schedules and presides over Executive Board meetings
                                       as a non-voting member
i. Notifies Executive Board of meeting time and location at least 48 hours in advance
ii. Sends out an agenda at least 24 hours in advance of Executive Board meetings.
b.   Casts the deciding vote if an Executive Board vote ends   
                                        in a tie
c.   Is responsible for ensuring all elected officers and
                                       coordinators are performing their duties
d.   Forms and dissolves committees as needed
e.   Maintains all ties with Student Senate
f.   Maintains ties with VU Ballroom’s Faculty Advisor
g.   Maintains ties with the local USA Dance chapter
h.   May write and sign checks and has possession of a club
                                       debit card
i.  Initiates a yearly review of this Constitution
j.  Has possession and maintains a record of team history
k. Must have previous experience on any Valparaiso  
                                     University Student Senate approved club or organization Executive Board
l. Reserves rooms for competition practices, social lessons, and all other events well in advance
2.   Vice President
a.  Performs the duties in place of the President if he/she is
      unavailable, resigns, or is impeached until such a time   that the President is replaced
b.  Organizes away competitions as designated in Article II Section A
c.  Maintains ties with away competition schools
3.    Secretary
a.  Takes minutes at Executive Board meetings and uploads them to the Google account that are availabe on request
b.   Maintains the organization’s list serves  
c.   Checks the Gmail account and labels mail for appropriate officers
d.   Notifies appropriate officers of all incoming communications with the team via email, Facebook, etc. within 48 hours
e.   Sends emails with weekly announcements about social lessons and other events
f.   Maintains attendance sheets for all social events
g.   Maintains an archive of all documents that are pertinent to the maintenance and activities of the organization
h.   Maintains Competition and Social Team calendars
4.    Treasurer
a.   Develops yearly budget and presents it to Student Senate and the Finance Committee
b.   Manages the organization’s budget
c.   May write and sign checks and has possession of a club debit card
d. Any expenditure outside of the budget requires the approval of the Executive Board
e.   Reimbursements shall be provided only for Senate approved expenditures
f.   Works with Vice President to determine all competition fees and deadlines (as set forth in Article II, Section B)
g.   Maintains organization’s tax-exempt status by filing an IRS form 990 before the end of the fiscal year
h.   Treasurer must present the budget to Executive Board prior to submitting it to Student Senate
5.    Public Relations Coordinator
a.   Informs the club of dance events not being hosted by the club
b.   Organizes social events at least three times each semester
c.   Designs, distributes, and arranges advertising for all VU Ballroom events
d.  Is responsible for maintaining a social media presence for the team
e.   Communicates with the Torch to advertise for team events
f. Coordinates VU Ballroom table and publicity in regards to the Student Activities Fair
6.    Lessons Coordinator
a.   Organizes and reserves space for group and private lessons for both Fall and Spring Semesters
b.   Coordinates teachers for both beginning and intermediate Social Lessons
c.   Serves as contact regarding switches and absences for all lessons
d.   Communicates with the Team Coach(es) about all lesson times, changes, and the academic calendar.
e.  Is required to teach the social lesson if another teacher cannot be present unless he or she has an academic commitment.
f. Coordinate 3 semesterly workshops with approved outside coaches with the help of the captains.
7.    Coordinators
a.   Coordinators have the same eligibility requirements as Executive Board members with the exception of Website and Camera Coordinators
b.   Executive Board appoints all coordinators by a simple majority vote, and the individual has the right to accept or deny the appointment
c.    Coordinators must attend Executive Board meetings if requested to do so with four days notice, but they have no voting rights
d.   Major Events Coordinator
i.     Coordinates Dancing with the VU Stars and Valpo Comp
ii.    Chairs all committees formed to organize the aforementioned events
iii.   Committee positions for Valpo Comp include the following and will report directly to the Major Events Coordinator
a) Registration
b) Housing
c) Volunteers
d) Union Liaison
e) Other committees as needed
iv.   Holds weekly meetings with all Major Events Committee members two months prior to Valpo Comp
v.   Maintains contact with and handles contracts with the Union for all hired professionals for Valpo Comp in a timely manner
e.   Website Coordinator
i.    Maintains and updates the organization’s website
ii.  Posts updates for every major team event
iii. Posts links to relevant videos and results page
iv. Update the social lesson calendar monthly.
v. Communicate with the Treasurer to make sure the website is paid for each year.
f.    Camera Coordinator
i.   Is responsible for the team camera
ii.  Records videos at competitions, call outs, and other major events and appoints a substitute in the case of their absence
iii. Uploads, labels, and organizes all videos to the team YouTube account within two weeks of the event

IV.    Team Captains
        A.   Captain Structure
1.   The existing executive board will determine the number of captains for upcoming academic year based on the needs of the team.
2.   The Captains are non-voting members of the Executive Board
3.   One Captain must be of the opposite gender

        B.    Eligibility
1.   Member of VU Ballroom for at least one year
2.  Proficient in leading and following all Bronze level dances in American and International Styles as determined by the outgoing Captains and outgoing President
3.   Has served as an Executive Board member, Coordinator, or has received an exception from the outgoing Executive Board
C.   Responsibilities
1.   Organizes and oversees team practice
2.   Maintains and enforces Team Policies as outlined in Article I Section C
3.   Resolves Competition Team member issues
4.   Provides information to Competitive Team regarding team etiquette
5.   Consults with the Executive Board to choose competitions for the year
6.   At least one Captain is present at all team sponsored competitions, unless absence is approved by the President
7.   Serves as physical representative for VU Ballroom at competitions
8.   Has final say in decisions regarding Competitive Team, unless overruled by unanimous vote of Executive Board
a.   Majority of captains must be in agreement
b.   If a decision cannot be reached, the Vice President will serve as mediator
9.    Casts, choreographs, and prepares Showcase dances
10.  Communicates with team coach about private and group lesson material
11.  Teaches and oversees Newcomer class
a.   Serves as designated teacher for Newcomers at Competition Team practices
    I. All questions must be asked to the Captains first
    II. If no captain is available, any Captain approved silver level or above dancer in that style may answer                       questions they are asked.
b. Captains serve as guidance and resource for returning team members. Returning team              members can seek guidance from one another
c.   One captain must attend all group Newcomer Lessons
d.   Works out partner pairings for only incoming Newcomer class
e.   Organizes a mock competition before the first competition in the Fall Semester
f.  Teaches proper Dancesport etiquette
g.  Is responsible for coordinating shoe orders
12. Maintains practice attendance and notifies the Executive Board when a member violates team policy
13. Is responsible for selecting and maintaining ties with team coach(es)

V.    Executive Board Meetings
A.      Executive Board meetings are open to all members of VU Ballroom, but only the Vice President,                     Treasurer, Secretary, Public Relations Officer, and Lessons Coordinator may vote
B.      In the case of a tie, the President shall cast the deciding vote
C.      Executive Board shall meet weekly (excluding academic recess) to discuss and decide upon matters              pertaining to the organization
D.      At least four officers are required for Executive Board to meet or vote on motions
E.      Should an officer need to be absent from a meeting, he or she must inform the President at least 24            hours before the meeting is scheduled to take place
F.      Two unexcused absences represent a failure to perform duties and constitutes grounds for                            impeachment
G.      Motions may be made by any Competitive Team member, coordinator, or captain and in order for a             motion to pass, it must receive a second and simple majority of all Executive Board members
H.      Any Executive Board member may call a meeting at their discretion with 48 hours notice

VI.    Elections
A.      Executive Board elections shall be held before the final competition of the year
B.      The actual date shall be decided upon by the President and announced to the team at least two weeks prior           to the elections
C.      Nominations
1.    Any member is allowed to nominate another member or him/herself
2.    Members must be given at least one week to turn in nominations
3.    If the nominee is eligible, he/she will be notified via e-mail
4.    The nominee may then accept and submit a short statement regarding his/her qualifications or           reject the nomination
5.    The Secretary and Public Relations Officer may be nominated for partial terms to be replaced by         a specified member at a predetermined date
6.    Executive Board retains the right to reject any nominations which they unanimously believe will           not be able to uphold the duties of the position
7.    Any member accepting a nomination is required to read the Constitution before his/her name is        added to the voting ballot
D.      Voting
1.    All competitive members of VU Ballroom are eligible to vote
2.    Voting will be done by secret ballot
3.    Voting will take place at a date, time, and place determined by the President
4.    Absentee ballots must be submitted before the end of the election time
5.    The President will count the votes unless the President is a nominee for a contested position, in           which case the Vice President will count the votes for that position
6.    If any member, officer, or coordinator finds an issue with the final count, he or she can request a         count validation which will be performed by the Vice President and/or Secretary
7.    The nominee receiving the most votes will win the position
8.    In the case of a tie, the Executive Board will vote on the contested position, excluding any                     officers who are nominated for the contested position, and the nominee receiving a simple                 majority of votes will win the position
9.    Newly elected officers will assume their positions at the second Executive Board meeting                       following the election

VII.    Stepping Down, Impeachment, and Replacement of Officers
A.      Stepping Down
1.    If any officer believes he/she is not able to successfully perform the duties of his/her position,              he/she may step down by notifying the Executive Board
B.      Replacement of Officers
1.    Should a position become vacant, an emergency election shall be held to fill the empty office
2.    The replacement officer will assume his/her duties immediately following the emergency election
3.    The President shall temporarily fill the empty position pending the results of the election
4.    If the office of the President is vacant, the Vice President will fill the position until the emergency election
C.      Impeachment
1.    Any Executive Board member or coordinator can move to impeach another Executive Board                member or coordinator who has
a.  Failed to perform his/her duties effectively
b.  Utilized his/her position for their personal advantage
c.  Acted in a manner detrimental to the organization
d.  Two unexcused absences from Executive Board meetings
2.    A simple majority vote of the Executive Board is considered sufficient to pass a motion of impeachment

VIII.    Amendments to the Constitution
A.   Amendments to the Constitution are done through motions at any Executive Board meeting
B.   Amendments to the Constitution may be initiated by a motion by any officer, coordinator, captain, or            competitive team member
C.   Amendments must be presented in their finalized written form before voting can occur
D.  Four votes shall be considered sufficient to pass an amendment
E.  Unless otherwise specified in the motion, approved amendments will be transcribed and go into                     immediate effect
F.  Formal review of the Constitution must be completed before announcement of elections

IX.    Dissolution of the Club
A.      Any officer or chair believing that VU Ballroom does not have the resources to fulfill its purpose may             initiate a motion of dissolution at any regular meeting of the Executive Board
B.      There must be a unanimous vote in order to pass a motion of dissolution
C.      If the Executive Board passes the vote, a three-fourths majority vote of the general membership is                 required to dissolve the club
D.      Should a motion of dissolution pass, all accounts shall be closed and all assets will be immediately                 turned over to Valparaiso University

Bylaw 1     
If there should be a disagreement over the meaning of any provisions of this document, immediate clarification will be decided by a simple majority of the Executive Board and the Constitution shall be amended to reflect this clarification.

Bylaw 2   
Any Executive Board member or acting instructor shall retain the right to remove any person from any VU Ballroom sponsored function for unruly conduct.  If the conduct persists, Executive Board shall retain the right to unanimously vote to expel the organization member or student permanently from all future functions.

Bylaw 3    
A minimum of one Executive Board member must be present at every VU Ballroom sponsored event, both on and off campus unless otherwise approved by the Executive Board.

Bylaw 4   
This constitution shall be available to all organization members at their request.

Bylaw 5
All members of VU Ballroom must abide by all team policies. Any member in violation of any of the team policies is subject to probation and expulsion from the team.

Bylaw 6
If any team member fails to submit a payment by the due date, they shall be charged a predetermined late fee in addition to the amount already owe.  Members shall be informed of due dates at least a week in advance by email.

Amended and revised October 2017.