Williams Outing Club Constitution
Founded 1915; reorganized 1932, 1950, 1952, 1957, 1973, 1994, 2003, 2017, 2020
Williams Outing Club (WOC), through the efforts of its volunteer student leadership and Faculty Director stimulates participation in and appreciation for outdoor activities. In so doing, WOC will further an ideal of college education, develop personal initiative and leadership, promote skills in outdoor recreation, educate itself and the college communities about environmental conservation, seek new opportunities for outreach, and encourage the meeting of people of common interests.
These principles guide WOC in ensuring the availability of outdoor recreation, the present and future college community. The Williams Outing Club is committed to including all members of the Williams Community in its programming and values the equality and intrinsic worth of all people regardless of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, socio-economic class, first-generation status, religion, ability, and other intersectional identities.
Article I. Organization
Section 1. Participation
Activities and events of WOC shall be open to all people in the Williams College community.
Section 2. Membership
Annual membership shall be open to all persons in the Williams College community upon payment of dues to be determined by the Executive Board. Membership permits access to and use of equipment, WOC/PE instruction, Nate Lowe Memorial Climbing Wall, Dorland Memorial Cabin, etc. Dues provide an important source of funding for WOC operations and help defray maintenance costs.
Section 3. Executive Board
The Board, with the oversight of the Director and Assistant Director, shall have general charge and control of the affairs, funds, and property of the Club. The student executive board shall be chosen in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution and shall consist of the offices of President, Vice President/Treasurer, and Secretary as well as the board members. The Board shall perpetuate the purposes for which the Club was formed and has since existed. It shall meet weekly and in additional sessions as called by the President. Such meetings shall be open to club members unless otherwise stipulated.
Section 4. Faculty Director and Assistant Director
The primary responsibilities of the Outing Club Director and Assistant Director are to oversee and help coordinate the various activities of the Club.
- The Director and Assistant Director shall be a liaison between the Club and the Athletic Department. They shall teach courses in their fields of expertise. They shall assign student PE instructors for the Club’s credit courses, and be responsible for all payment of instructors.
- The Director and Assistant Director are expected to help maintain the quality of leadership and high standards of safety in all program areas. They shall also help to maintain the integrity of the Club’s equipment and make appropriate purchases when necessary.
- The Director and Assistant Director will work closely with the Club’s President to help uphold the Club’s Constitution and mission. They shall work with the Club’s treasurer to report all business transactions, and keep an accurate record of all the Club’s finances.
- The Director in consultation with the Executive Board shall sign all contracts, deeds, or other documents in the name of the Club.
- The Director will prepare an end of year summary to be given to all Executive Board members and the Director of Athletics. This summary will include a report on the Club’s activities, special events/projects, PE courses, and memberships. It will also include a detailed financial report complete with the Club’s Treasurer.
In keeping with the spirit of the position, the Director and Assistant Director shall be accountable to the Executive Board and Williams College for all actions taken on behalf of the Williams Outing Club.
Article II. Executive Board
Section 1. Collective Responsibilities
The WOC Executive Board is the administration of the Williams Outing Club.
- WOC Executive Board shall, at the start of a new academic year, discuss and articulate a philosophy or mission for the year, and specify the reasons for carrying out those goals.
- The Board shall work together on organizing large events and campaigns of publicity or education.
- All Board members shall be responsible for running beginner programming.
- The Board shall be responsible for the election of the Officers of the Club in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution.
- The Board shall have the power to remove from office any of its own members or members of the Club by a four-fifths vote of the entire Board.
- The Board shall draw up a budget, under the Treasurer’s guidance and for submittal to the body providing student funding, to cover the course of its administration. Said budget shall include allotments for all areas of Club expenses.
- The Board shall be responsible for maintaining continuity between incoming and outgoing boards by producing an annual report informed by records submitted by each standing committee to the President. This should be supplemented by the meeting minutes collected by the Secretary and the Director’s annual report.
Section 2. Procedure
These procedures shall govern WOC Executive Board Meetings.
- Each Executive Board member shall have one vote.
- All issues shall be passed or rejected by a majority of the voting members of the Executive Board, provided a quorum is present. Quorum shall be 2/3 of voting Board members.
- At his/her/their discretion, an Executive Board member may call for a consensus decision rather than a vote on an issue. In this case, the Board will decide the issue through consensus.
Section 3. Officers
Executive Board Officers elected to the Presidency, Vice-Presidency or Secretary roles are required to hold positions in standing committees or volunteer positions. They are required to lead trips and activities depending on competence, experience, and interest according to the requirements laid out in this document.
The WOC Executive Board shall elect the following officers:
- President. The duties of the President shall be to act as general director to the Club policies and affairs and to coordinate the work of various standing committees. The President shall call and preside at meetings of the Executive Board. This officer shall oversee the accomplishment of responsibilities by the Board. The President shall be empowered to act in the absence of the Executive Board as the official representative of the Club, but shall report all such actions to the Executive Board at the next meeting.
- Vice President. The Vice President shall assist other officers in the fulfillment of their responsibilities, presiding in the absence of the President, and giving particular assistance to the Secretary. The Vice President will also assume the responsibilities of Treasurer. They will be responsible for drawing up a new budget in the fall for submittal to the body providing student funding, collection, care and disbursement of all Club funds in consultation with the Director. The treasurer shall report to the Board, keeping them informed as to the Club’s finances, and shall produce a complete financial summary in the annual report of the Executive Board.
- Secretary. The Secretary shall be a regularly elected position on the Executive Board. The Secretary will record the minutes of all Executive Board meetings and consult with the Director about files and recording Club policy.
Section 4. Individual Responsibilities
The WOC Executive Board members shall have the following yearly requirements:
- Each Executive Board member is required to lead three trips per semester, one of which must be an off-campus trip of medium to large time and investment.
- Mountain Day and Winter Carnival committee members’ work shall be considered in context; thus those committee members are required to run two trips that semester, neither of which must be a large-scale trip.
- Each Executive Board member must join at least one standing committee or must take at least one volunteer position.
- Tenured Executive Board members are defined as Board members who have been reselected by the reselection committee at least once.
- The term of graduating or departing tenured Board members ends at the election of new officers. Meeting and retreat attendance is coordinated in advance (i.e. departing members may only attend part of the retreat etc.), keeping in mind the principles: (1) that the new Board has space to be its own; (2) there is a smooth, coordinated transition and any reports or knowledge are passed onto the new Board; and (3) impartial elections of officers are facilitated.
- It is recognized that Executive Board members may not be on a traditional academic timeline. In these cases, the Executive Board member(s) will make a plan with the Officers on when he/she/they will end their term.
- It is recognized that Board members may need time off without stepping down from the board. In these cases, the Board members will work with the Officers to establish clear communication and a plan upon return. Leaves of absence should not discount a Board member from returning.
- If an untenured Board member misses an application cycle due to a leave of absence, here being ReCom, they will be required to re-apply to the Board in a method determined by the Board.
Section 5. Standing Committees
There shall be a standing committee for each major activity led by the Williams Outing Club that requires special focus not provided by the Executive Board at large.
- It is the responsibility of a standing committee and its members to fulfill its enumerated requirements and broader mission.
- Standing committees are considered to be additional to the individual requirements laid out in Article II Section 4.
- A standing committee shall determine its own internal structure and can determine the maximum number of members. Standing committees must have at least one committee member not previously on the committee.
- Standing committees shall present on the state, goals, and plans of the committee to the board twice a semester.
- Board members choose their standing committees at the Spring Retreat by self-selection and may be on multiple standing committees. Minimum numbers on each committee, as stipulated by the Constitution, must be met.
- Should the number of Board members who have chosen a committee exceed the maximum number of members allowed, it falls upon the highest-ranking members of the committee, whereby highest-ranking means committee members that have sat on the committee for the most years, to determine the committee’s members.
- Winter Study shall be considered part of Spring Semester.
- The WOC Executive Board has the following standing committees:
- Mountain Day. The Mountain Day Standing Committee shall consist of 3-4 members. The Committee is tasked with planning, organizing, and running Mountain Day in the Fall Semester.
- Winter Carnival. The Winter Carnival Standing Committee shall consist of 3-4 members. The Committee is tasked with planning, organizing, and running Winter Carnival in the Spring Semester.
- Adventure Programming. The Adventure Programming Standing Committee shall ensure technical programming (such as backpacking, climbing, paddling, backcountry skiing, etc.) takes place. The Committee is required to ensure three paddling trips, two off-campus climbing trips, and other off-campus adventure programming trips take place per semester. The Adventure Programming Standing Committee will also ensure kayak rolling sessions occur all semester and Winter Study, one beginner climbing night at the wall occurs per semester, and other beginner adventure programming takes place per semester. There must be at least 3 members of the Adventure Programming committee.
- Community Building. The Community Building Standing Committee shall ensure programming related to building the WOC community takes place. This includes but is not limited to WOC Din, weekly walks, and polar plunges. The Events Standing Committee is required to ensure: WOC Din takes place twice a semester and communal events take place during the academic year.
- Committees can be changed with an amendment to the constitution of a ⅔ vote.
Section 6. Volunteer Positions
There shall be volunteer positions for involved duties necessary for the Williams Outing Club to function.
- It is the responsibility of the volunteer to perform those duties effectively.
- Volunteer positions, like standing committees, are considered to be additional to the individual requirements laid out in Article II Section 4.
- Unless explicitly specified, each volunteer position may only have one volunteer.
- Board members may choose a volunteer position at the Spring Retreat by self-selection.
- If multiple Board members choose the same position, a majority vote of the Executive Board determines the member.
- The WOC Executive Board has the following volunteer positions:
- Pantry Manager. The Pantry Manager Volunteer Position shall keep the WOC Equipment Room Pantry full and will check frequently to see if supplies are running low.
- Cabin Manager. The Cabin Manager Volunteer Position shall be responsible for the Dorland Memorial Cabin. The Volunteer shall coordinate Cabin reservations and ensure upkeep of the Cabin, including restocking wood and checking for damages.
- Trip Leader Coordinator. The Trip Leader Coordinator Volunteer Position shall ensure non-Board members are able to lead WOC trips. The Volunteer will carry out the certification process for trip leaders as the policy indicates, notify the Executive Board about trips, aid leaders in publicizing and planning trips, and ensure leaders can easily access gear and can run trips.
- Communications Director. The Communications Director shall manage WOC’s various social media and outreach platforms, as well as the WOC website.
- Volunteer positions can be changed with an amendment to the constitution of a ⅔ vote.
Article III. Elections
Section 1. Returning Executive Board Members
This Policy concerns the election of returning board members.
- The reselection committee, hereinafter known as ReCom, shall consist of all tenured board members plus all senior board members who are on-campus and willing.
- The reselection process must be completed in a timely fashion. Proceedings shall commence at the start of Winter Study and will conclude by the end of January.
- Applications shall be open to and required for all untenured board members who wish to continue as board members. Applications shall be turned in to ReCom.
- The application is determined by ReCom and is suggested to encourage board members to reflect on the past year. In addition to the application, ReCom shall perform interviews with re-applicants.
- ReCom shall review all re-applicants individually and will holistically evaluate re-applicants based on the re-applicant’s individual requirements, committee/volunteer requirements, and adherence to the mission of WOC.
- ReCom shall elect re-applicants through a majority vote in a closed meeting.
- ReCom is responsible for notifying all board members eligible for re-application, regardless of if they applied, of their status once ReCom concludes.
- Executive Board members abroad for a full year may be on the Board for the remainder of Spring Semester, but must apply again the following year through ReCom.
Note: Any re-applicant rejected by ReCom can appeal ReCom’s decision by applying through the new board member application process outlined in Article III Section 2.
Section 2. New Executive Board Members
This Policy concerns the election of new board members.
- The selection committee, hereinafter known as SelCom, shall consist of 4-6 returning members of the existing Executive Board who are on the Executive Board after re-application proceedings conclude.
- The new board application process shall commence directly after the re-application process concludes.
- Applications shall be open to the whole student body, excepting seniors and exchange students. Applications shall be turned in to SelCom by mid-February.
- Any member of SelCom must note any conflicts of interest and rectify the conflict as best as possible.
- SelCom shall perform interviews in pairs with all applicants.
- SelCom will ask the Executive Board for a target number of applicants to accept based on a desired number of board members. SelCom then shall meet to review all applications and sort applicants into recommended, fringe, and rejected groups. SelCom then submits a list of applicants and their respective group to the Executive Board.
- SelCom may reject weak applications by consensus, putting these applications in the rejected group.
- SelCom shall present to the Executive Board at the time of elections. All recommended and fringe applicants–herein defined as applicants that are between recommended and rejected–are presented individually by their two interviewers; the reasoning behind the applicant’s group, either recommended or fringe, must be mentioned. Applicants rejected by SelCom are quickly mentioned with the reason behind the rejection.
- The Executive Board may overturn any SelCom rejection with a proposal and seconding.
- The Executive Board shall elect the new members in a closed meeting. Only returning members may vote; outgoing members may be present to oversee the vote. The Executive Board shall vote by the method defined below in the subsection.
- The Board shall have a majority vote determining the number of new applicants to select.
- Ballots will have all applicants listed alphabetically, presented as a series of checkboxes.
- Voters may check up to the number determined in III.2.6 of applicants. Essentially, each voter chooses their ideal board.
- Once ballots are cast, votes are tallied up and the top applicants up to the number determined in III.2.6 are chosen.
- Ties are broken either by consensus or by majority vote.
- SelCom must notify all applicants of SelCom’s decision once elections have taken place.
- The elections must be completed in a timely fashion to allow continuity between outgoing and incoming boards. Proceedings shall begin at the start of the spring semester and should conclude one week before Spring Break, so that the incoming Executive Board can attend a meeting before Spring Break.
Section 3. Officers
These procedures pertain to the election of WOC Executive Board Officers.
- The Club’s Officers shall be elected from among the members of the Executive Board. The Officers must be on standing committees or hold a volunteer position in addition to holding the position of Officer.
- Any tenured member of the Board may nominate themselves for the positions of President and Vice-President, and any member of the Board may nominate themselves for the position of Secretary. All self-nominations must occur at the first official meeting of the new Board.
- The Officers shall be elected by Ranked Choice Voting in a closed meeting immediately following the Spring Retreat.
- The Officers may be elected for only a one-year term.
Section 4. Supplementary Elections
When it becomes necessary to replace the position of a resigning or removed Executive Board member, the Board shall do so through an election procedure that they deem appropriate to be determined by a two-thirds vote of the entire Board.
Article IV. Adoptions and Amendments
This Constitution shall be adopted by a two-thirds vote of all voting members of the Executive Board.
This Constitution may be amended by a two-thirds vote of all the voting members of the Executive Board.