Student Constitution and Bylaws
Name, Purpose, and Membership
A. The name of this organization shall be the Medical Student Government of The Washington University School of Medicine.
B. The purpose of the Medical Student Government shall be the advancement of student interests and welfare to achieve excellence in academic pursuits and professional interactions.
C. The Medical Student Government shall represent all students pursuing a medical degree who are in good standing with the University.
A. Offices: Each Class shall elect the following officers: President, Medical Education Representative (MER), Representative to the Organization of Student Representatives (OSR Rep) of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), Representative to the Graduate-Professional Council (GPC Rep), and a Social Chair/Committee.
B. Duties: Each class officer shall have specific responsibilities:
1. President: Each class shall elect one President. This person shall serve as the official spokesperson for the class in dealings with the Student Government and with the University. The President shall disseminate information regarding medical student affairs and activities. The President shall have oversight and approve of all moneys spent by the Social Chair/Committee. The President shall perform any and all duties that are unique to the class represented.
2. MER: The MER shall represent the class at all meetings of the MERs and Curriculum Evaluation Committee and serve as a liaison between students and faculty on curricular matters. The MER shall poll the class as needed regarding course evaluations and selection of recipients for the various Faculty Awards presented each year.
3. OSR Rep: The OSR Rep shall keep class members up to date with news from the OSR and from the AAMC. The OSR Rep shall represent the University at regional and national meetings of the OSR under an agreement with the University.
4. GPC Rep: The GPC representatives shall represent the School of Medicine at GPC meetings and shall inform the GPC of issues affecting the School of Medicine, learn about issues affecting other schools, discuss and find solutions to problems affecting the whole graduate and professional student population, and plan and advertise social activities that foster communication between all graduate and professional students. The Reps shall be the liaison to the other programs within the School of Medicine, as well as to the rest of the University community. In addition, the four Reps will divide the responsibilities of serving on the Professional and Graduate Students Coordinating Committee (ProGrads), the Medical Campus Committee (temporarily named), and other inter-school/division committees as needed. Specifically in regards to the Health Professional Student Leadership Council (HPSLC), two of the four GPC representatives will serve as voting members on HPSLC. One of these voting members must be the 1st or 2nd year GPC representative. The selection of MSG’s voting members on HPSLC must be made before the end of the sixth week of first-semester classes in the academic year.
5. Social Chair/Committee: The Social Chair/Committee shall organize social functions for class members and interact with other Social Chairs/Committees to organize social functions with other classes and within the University community. The Social Chair/Committee shall consult and obtain approval from the class President for all moneys spent on such functions.
C. Elections: An Election Official designated by the Student Government shall be responsible for the organization and execution of all elections held for offices specified under the Constitution, including President, MER, OSR, GPC, and social chair. Elections shall be held for each of the class officer positions according to the following format:
1. Voting Eligibility: All students who will be a member of the class during the term for which the elected officers will serve will be eligible to vote in the election. Efforts should be made by the appointed election official to extend the opportunity to vote to students who will be entering their respective classes in the upcoming year, including but not limited to the large number of MD/PhD students returning for their clinical clerkships.
a. First and second year offices: A member of the class will be considered to be an individual who is currently planning on taking the MD course of study for the upcoming year.
b. Third and fourth year offices: A member of the class will be considered to be an individual who is planning on taking the MD course of study anytime during the upcoming two years, including any individual planning to pursue an MA degree for one year after either the second or third year of medical school.
2. Nominations: Nominations for each office shall be held starting at least one week prior to the election and ending no later than three days prior to the election. Nominations shall be submitted in writing to the Election Official. Any student eligible to run for office may nominate him/herself or another medical student in good standing. Candidates must have the firm intention of carrying out all the duties and obligations of the office for the entire term.
3. Candidate Eligibility: All students who will be a member of the class during the term for which the elected officers will serve, as defined in Article II.C.1, will be eligible to be nominated for election except as described below:
a. President: The class president does not need to be taking the same course of study as the classmates he or she represents. Any individual who meets the criteria defined in Article II.C.1 will be eligible to serve.
i. Third year MER: Due to the duties of the third year MER, it is essential that the third year MER be an individual who is currently taking the MD course of study with the rest of his or her classmates.
ii. Fourth year MER: The fourth year MER rep does not need to be taking the same course of study as the classmates he or she represents. Any individual who meets the criteria defined in Article II.C.1 will be eligible to serve.
c. OSR Rep: An OSR rep does not need to be taking the same course of study as the classmates he or she represents. Any individual who meets the criteria defined in Article II.C.1 will be eligible to serve.
d. GPC Rep: A GPC rep does not need to be taking the same course of study as the classmates he or she represents. Any individual who meets the criteria defined in Article II.C.1 will be eligible to serve.
e. Off-Campus Students: Students who have chosen to pursue a course of study that results in his or her not being in Saint Louis will not be eligible to retain or be nominated for a position. This exclusion does not apply to students who will off-site temporarily for an away rotation.
4. Elections and Terms: All terms shall begin upon election. Regular elections shall be held according to the following schedule:
a. First Year: Elections shall be held within three to six weeks of the beginning of the first-semester classes. Each position carries a term of one academic year.
b. Second Year: Elections shall be held within six weeks prior to the completion of the first academic year. Each position carries a term of one academic year.
c. Third and Fourth Year: Elections shall be held within six weeks prior to the completion of the second academic year. Each position carries a term of two academic years.
5. Class Officer Balloting: To be elected a candidate must receive a simple majority (greater than 50 percent) of the votes cast for that particular office by at least a quorum of one-half of the eligible voters. Write-in candidates shall be allowed on this ballot. Absentee ballots shall be allowed if they are given in writing to the Election Official prior to the day of election. Ballot counting shall be the responsibility of the Election Official under the observation of a witness agreeable to all candidates.
6. Class Officer Runoff Procedures: If no candidate receives a simple majority for a particular position, a runoff between the top two candidates shall be held within three days of the initial election. Write-in candidates will not be allowed on this ballot. To be elected a candidate must receive the most votes cast for that particular office by at least a quorum of one-half of the eligible voters.
7. Social Chair Election Procedure: Social chair elections will be conducted in conjunction with MSG class officer elections. A maximum of four social chairs can be elected into office. Candidates do not have to receive a majority of votes to be elected into office. All other MSG election procedures apply.
8. Appeals: All decisions are made by the Election Official during the election period. Appeals may be made by a candidate in writing to the Chair of the Medical Student Government and will be reviewed and ruled on by a group consisting of the current President, MER, OSR, and GPC from each of the four classes; the decisions of this group will be considered final.
9. Vacant Offices: If any office is vacated before its set term, an election will be held for that office using the procedures outlined above within three weeks of the vacancy. If a current class officer runs for the vacated office, that officer must vacate the post he/she occupies.
10. Removal from Office: In the unfortunate event that a class officer is not fulfilling his/her obligations and duties, MSG by a two-thirds majority of a quorum of one-half may vote to recommend that an officer be removed from office to the class that elected the officer. A vote of recall shall then be held within one week. If a three-fourths majority of a quorum of two-thirds of a class votes to recall the officer, the officer shall be removed from office. An election for vacant office shall then be held.
D. MD/PhD Research Students: There shall be two Representatives of the MD/PhD students who are outside the core medical curriculum. These Representatives shall be selected by a method chosen by the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP.) In addition, these individuals shall be full voting members of the MSG. Each Representative shall serve a two-year term, with elections for one Representative each summer, so the terms of the two Representatives overlap by one year.
E. Technology Liaison: The responsibilities of the class appointed Technology Liaison include serving as the representative to the administration regarding the availability and utilization of technology and addressing related class concerns. In addition, the Technology Liaison will work with Instructional Technologies and Library Systems (ITLS) to provide new services and assist the MER with technology-related education initiatives. One Technology Liaison will be appointed for each medical school class after the class-wide elections have taken place. After a call for applications from the class, the four (4) elected MSG members of that class review each application and select the Technology Liaison by consensus. The term of the Technology Liaison will be the same as the elected officials of that class.
The Medical Student Government
A. Membership: The Student Government shall consist of the President, the MER, the OSR Rep, and the GPC Rep from each of the four classes, as well as two representatives of MD/PhD Students.
1. Additional voting members: Any student who has served on MSG for a minimum of two years and is no longer eligible to serve as a class representative due to departure from the traditional four-year MD curriculum may be remain on MSG as a voting member in an advisory role. All students will only be eligible to serve as a voting member for up to five total years.
2. Non-voting members: In addition, the Student Government may offer a non-voting position to a duly elected representative of any student group which is recognized nationally, regionally or within the Medical School so long as such a group is open to all medical students without discrimination and that such a group is not in conflict with the goals of the Student Government.
B. Purpose and Responsibilities: The Student Government shall carry out the business of the Student Government pursuant to the goals stated in Article I. The purpose of the Student Government shall be to represent and promote the interests and concerns of the medical student body through activities including but not limited to:
1. Forming and representing official student body opinions for interaction with the University, its Administration and other groups associated with medical education.
2. Serving as a forum for interaction between student groups.
3. Serving as a forum for student-initiated curricular review and reform in the pursuit of academic excellence.
4. Promoting interaction among the School of Medicine students, faculty and administration, and with the wider University community.
5. Establishing a funding mechanism and budget with the associated collection and disbursements of funds for activities pursuant to goals stated in Article I.
6. Organizing elections for class officers and any other official representative of the student body at large.
7. Exercising any such additional authority as may be granted to it by the School of Medicine or by other organizations, so long as such authority is consistent with the purposes stated in Article I.
8. Posting agenda of all meetings for public reference.
Formulating all rules and bylaws necessary for the Student Government to carry out the responsibilities and powers granted through this constitution. Such rules and bylaws shall require a simple majority of a quorum of two-thirds of the voting Student Government members.
9. The Student Government shall meet regularly and at intervals of no more than six weeks.
10. Representatives from the various student groups sitting on the Student Government shall keep the Student Government informed of all activities associated with their posts in the form of a written brief to be presented at the Student Government meeting as appropriate for their group’s activities.
C. Student Government Offices: There shall be a Student Government Chair and Vice-Chair elected from the voting members of the Student Government. Election shall require a simple majority of the voting Student Government. The election shall be held within six weeks prior to the completion of the academic year. The terms of these offices shall be one academic year.
1. Student Government Chair: The Student Government Chair shall preside at all meetings of the Student Government and have specific responsibilities:
2. The Chair shall serve as official representative and spokesperson for the Student Government to the University, its Administration, and to other groups associated with medical education.
3. The Chair shall be responsible to ensure the duties of the Student Government are carried out efficiently and in a timely manner.
4. The Chair shall report the names of the Class Officers to the Dean, and post such a list for public reference.
5. The Chair shall be responsible for overseeing and maintaining records and to set the agenda for such meetings in written form for distribution to Student Government members prior to each meeting.
6. The MSG shall be responsible for overseeing and maintaining records of all financial transactions of the Student Government. The second-year class president shall regularly update the Student Government on its financial standing, and must make all financial records available to any medical student, member of the Administration, or to any official of the University. All transactions shall require the signatures of the Chair and the Vice-Chair.
7. The Chair shall be empowered to call for standing and ad hoc committees to evaluate and make recommendations about specific areas of concern to the Student Government, the School of Medicine and its students. MSG shall appoint these committees.
8. The Chair shall be empowered to designate another Student Government member to take on one or more of his/her duties.
Ratification and Amendments
A. In 1993 this Constitution was ratified by a 2/3 majority of a quorum of one-half of the student body pursuing a medical degree.
B. This Constitution can be amended by either a 2/3 majority of a quorum of one-half of the students in their first, second, and third years, or by a unanimous vote of the elected members of the Medical Student Government.