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 September 17, 2014

I. Name, Acronym and Abbreviations

The organization shall be named the College of Natural Sciences Staff Committee and the acronym shall be CNSSC. The College of Natural Sciences may be referred to as the CNS.

II. Mission Statement

To promote the efficiency, retention and morale of the CNS staff.

III. Purpose

The purpose of the CNSSC is to facilitate enhanced communication and collaboration between CNS departments, to improve the training and educational opportunities provided to CNS staff, and to bolster the morale and culture of CNS staff members.

IV. Membership

There shall be no discrimination for reasons of religion, age, race or ethnicity, color, sex, marital status, national origin, disability or sexual orientation.

Section 1. Eligibility

Membership shall be open to all staff members of the CNS with a minimum of two years experience working in the CNS. There will be 15-20 members that represent diverse CNS departments, organized research units (ORUs) and the Dean’s office. Additionally, the committee membership will seek to adequately represent the diversity of job functions found amongst CNS staff.

Section 2. Election of the CNSSC members and Term of Membership

New CNSSC members and at least three alternate members shall be elected by a simple majority of retiring and continuing members of the CNSSC at the regularly scheduled May meeting. The Bylaws/Nominations & Elections Subcommittee shall conduct the nominations and elections of new committee members. Additional new members may be appointed from the alternates list or by special election at the discretion of the CNSSC membership. The term of office shall be two years, and the normal year shall be from June 1 through May 31. Members selected mid-year from the alternates list or in special elections will complete the time remaining in the first year of their term and then serve one additional year. Members of the CNS Dean’s Staff Task Force who continued to the CNSSC during the first year of its existence shall serve a one year term.

Section 3. Timeline

An email invitation shall be sent to all eligible staff members in the CNS during the second week of April with information on the upcoming selection of new CNSSC members, eligibility for membership and the procedure for applying for membership.  A reminder notice will be sent during the fourth week of April, and application for CNSSC membership will close on April 30th.  New members and alternates will be elected at the May general meeting, and applicants will be notified of the status of their application no later than May 31st.  New members will officially join the committee at the June meeting, and the newly elected officers shall preside. Retiring members will be encouraged to attend the June meeting, but they will not be eligible to vote. 

Section 4. Rights of Membership

Members in good standing are eligible to attend the general committee meetings, vote, serve on standing and ad-hoc subcommittees, and hold office.

V. Organizational structure (Officers)

Section 1. Elections, Terms of Service and Qualifications for Office

Officers shall be elected at the April meeting each year, and their term of service shall be through May of the following year. Both continuing and retiring members may vote for new officers. Members completing their first year of service shall be eligible for all officer positions. If an officer is unable to complete their term of service, a special election will be held at the discretion of the committee. All members of the CNSSC will qualify to serve if chosen in a special election.

Section 2. Offices


The Chair presides at general CNSSC meetings and at meetings of the executive subcommittee. The Chair will coordinate the work of the standing subcommittees and represent the CNSSC at the CNS Business Officers meetings. The chair ensures that accounts are cleared at the year-end and that reports have been filed. The chair provides orientation to the incoming Chair and turns over all materials to his or her successor.


The Vice-chair shall assist the Chair in the performance of his or her duties and shall perform the duties of the Chair in his or her absence. The Vice-Chair shall service as a regular member of the executive subcommittee.


The Secretary/Treasurer shall take minutes at the general meetings and post the minutes on the CNSSC website. The Secretary/Treasurer shall coordinate the budget process and keep records of all financial transactions. Budget records shall be available to all members on request and formally presented to the Chair at the general meeting at the end of each budget year. The Secretary/Treasurer shall serve as a regular member of the executive subcommittee.

VI. Meetings of the CNSSC

Section 1. General Meetings

The CNSSC meets on the third Wednesday of every month at times and locations designated by the committee chair or general consensus. Members will be notified of changes in the monthly meeting time or date no less than 7 days prior to the meeting.

Section 2. Special Meetings

Special meetings may be called by the chair or vice-chair as necessary to fulfill the mission of the Organization. Members shall be notified no less than 7 days prior to the special meeting.

Section 3. Meeting Agendas

The chair determines the meeting agenda with advice from the CNSSC. Individual members may submit agenda items to the Chair in advance of the scheduled meeting.

Section 4. Meeting Quorum

Two-thirds of the CNSSC membership in attendance shall constitute a quorum for all actions that require a vote of the membership. Members unable to attend a meeting my designate a proxy through an email to the committee list serve.

VII. Subcommittees

Section 1. Standing Subcommittees

Membership in standing subcommittees shall be limited to members of the CNSSC. Each subcommittee shall choose a chair who will report on the subcommittee’s activities at CNSSC general meetings. Additional standing subcommittees may be established at the discretion of the general membership. Standing subcommittees shall meet at least one time between each of the general CNSSC meetings.

Executive Subcommittee: The executive subcommittee shall consist of the Chair, Vice-Chair and Secretary/Treasurer. The executive subcommittee may invite other CNSSC members on an ad-hoc basis when input is needed. The executive subcommittee shall meet monthly at least one week prior to the general meeting. The executive subcommittee shall consider and make recommendations on matters presented to it by the chair or other CNSSC members, assist the chair in preparation of the agenda for the general meeting, and advise the CNSSC of the need for a special meeting.

Bylaws/Nominations & Elections Subcommittee: The Bylaws subcommittee shall prepare the CNSSC bylaws and bring them to the general committee for adoption. They will assist the Executive committee in the implementation of the bylaws as needed. Should need arise, they shall be responsible for preparing any amendments to the bylaws and bringing them to the general CNSSC for adoption. They shall oversee the election of new members each spring.

Communication Subcommittee: The Communication subcommittee fosters two-way communication throughout the college. This process shall include, but not be limited to establishing and maintaining a website designed to meet the needs of CNS staff members. The content will include, but not be limited to, information, procedures and forms to aid in carrying out staff-specific functions, communication of statements from the CNS Dean’s office relevant to staff, training opportunities, contact information, links to calendars of upcoming events, and an interactive forum for exchange of ideas and concerns among members of the staff. The communications subcommittee will be responsible for coordinating with the Dean’s office to maintain a current email list of all members of the CNS staff.

Culture and Morale Subcommittee: The Culture and Morale subcommittee shall work of create the environment necessary for the success and retention of staff members throughout the college. They shall develop recommendations for the Dean’s office to improve morale and promote collegiality among staff members of the college, including, but not limited to improving supervision to create a professional environment, organizing social activities and celebrating departmental and individual milestones.

Training Subcommittee: The Training subcommittee shall identify areas where needed training is not currently readily available and explore resources to provide that training. Subcommittee members will oversee development of mentorship programs where experienced staff members can assist staff members learning a new task. A method to recognize experienced members shall be developed. The training committee will partner with the communication committee to provide links to online training and to publicize upcoming training opportunities.

Section 2. Ad-hoc Subcommittees

Ad-hoc committees will be established by the Executive committee or the general CNSSC membership as needed. Each ad-hoc committee will choose a member of the CNSSC to act as chair, who will report to the CNSSC membership at the general meeting. Individuals who are not members of the CNSSC may serve on ad-hoc committees. The time span of the ad-hoc committee will be determined by the matter under consideration, and it will be disbanded when that purpose is served.

VIII. Amendments

Any amendment to the bylaws of the CNSSC must be distributed to the membership at least two weeks prior to being voted on by the CNSSC, and must be ratified by a two-thirds (2/3) vote at a regularly scheduled or special meeting at which a quorum is present, or by proxy vote, provided that prior written notice and description of the proposed amendment is provided to all members at least 10 business days in advance of such meeting. Adoption of an amendment becomes effective immediately after the vote.

XI. Adoption of the Bylaws

The CNSSC bylaws were adopted based on an affirmative vote by a majority of the committee at a general meeting held on September 17, 2014 and became effective at the close of that meeting. The date of any future revisions to the bylaws will be noted in this section.

The bylaws were amended on May 28, 2015.