Sonoma State University Nursing Student Association Constitution

As Revised and Adopted 11/18/2019

  1. Article I Name of organization
    1. The official name of our student nurses association is Sonoma State University Nursing Student Association. 
    2. SSUNSA promotes relationships with the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA), California Nursing Student Association (CNSA), American Nurses Association (ANA) / National League for Nursing (NLN), as well as all other nursing and health related organizations.
  2. Purpose of Organization
    1. The objectives and purpose of SSUNSA/Sonoma State CNSA Chapter are as follows:
      • To assume responsibility for contributing to nursing education in order to provide for the highest quality of healthcare.
      • To provide programs representative of fundamental interests and concerns to nursing students.
      • To aid in the development of the whole person, including his/her professional role, his/her responsibility for health care of people in all walks of life.
      • Aid in the development of the whole person and promote care of the caregiver.
      • Mentoring and representing the professional role of the nurse in our school and community.
      • Encourage dedication to quality education and quality health care provision.
      • Promote and encourage participation in community service.
  • Function of Organization
    1. To have direct input into standards of nursing education and influence the education process.
    2. To influence health care, nursing education and practice through legislative activities as appropriate.
    3. To promote and encourage participation in community affairs and activities towards healthcare and the resolution of related social issues.
    4. To represent nursing students to the consumer, to institutions, and to other organizations.
    5. To promote and encourage students’ participation in interdisciplinary activities.
    6. To promote and encourage recruitment efforts, participation in student activities, and educational opportunities regardless of a person’s race, color, creed, national origin, ethnicity, age, gender, marital status, lifestyle, disability or economic status.
    7. To promote and encourage collaborative relationships with nursing and health related organizations.
  1. Article III Membership of SSU Organization
    1. Membership in the organization shall be open to all those regularly enrolled Sonoma State University students who are interested in membership. There shall be no other requirements for admission to regular membership. Each regular member has equal rights and privileges.
    2. This organization shall have associated members who are non-Sonoma State University students. Associated members shall have all membership privileges except for the right to vote or hold office. By California State University policy, no more than 20 percent of the membership shall be individuals who are not CSU students (e.g., faculty, staff, community members, students at other colleges, etc.
    3. Eligibility for membership or appointed or elected student officer positions shall not be limited on the basis of race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation, or disability. The organization shall have no rules or policies that discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation, or disability.
    4. Faculty, staff, and alumni of SSU, as well as non-students may be considered for non-voting membership in this organization. Only currently enrolled or continuing students of SSU may be voting members.
  2. Membership and Dues of CNSA/NSNA Organization
    1. Section 1. School Constituent
      1. School constituent membership is composed of active or associate members who are members of the NSNA and the state association when one exists.
      2. Sonoma State CNSA Chapter shall be composed of at least 10 members from Sonoma State University or the total school enrollment if less than 10. There shall be only one chapter on this school campus.
      3. For yearly recognition as a constituent, an officer of the Sonoma State CNSA Chapter shall submit annually the Official Application for NSNA Constituency Status which shall include the following areas of conformity: purpose and functions, membership, dues, and representation.
      4. A constituent association that fails to comply with the bylaws and policies of NSNA shall have its status as a constituent revoked by a 2/3 vote of the Board of Directors, provided that written notice of the proposed revocation has been given at least two months prior to the vote and the constituent association is given an opportunity to be heard.
      5. Sonoma State CNSA Chapter is an entity separate and a part from NSNA and its administration of activities, with NSNA and CNSA exercising no supervision or control over these immediate daily and regular activities. NSNA and CNSA have no liability for any loss, damages, or injuries sustained by third parties as a result of the negligence or acts of Sonoma State CNSA Chapter or the members thereof. In the event any legal proceedings are brought against NSNA and CNSA, Sonoma State CNSA Chapter will indemnify and hold harmless the NSNA and CNSA from any liability.
    2. Section 2. Categories of Constituent Membership
      1. Active members: Students enrolled in state approved programs leading to licensure as a registered nurse. Registered nurses enrolled in programs leading a baccalaureate degree with a major in nursing. Active members shall have all the privileges of membership.
      2. Associate members: Pre-nursing students, including registered nurses, enrolled in college or university programs designed as preparation for entrance into a program leading to an associate degree, diploma or baccalaureate degree in nursing. Associate members shall have all of the privileges of membership except the right to hold office as president or vice president at local, state, and national levels.
      3. Individual members: Individual membership shall be open at the national level to any eligible student when membership in a constituent association is not available. Individual members shall have the privileges of membership as prescribed in NSNA bylaws.
      4. Active and associate membership shall be renewable annually.
    3. Section 3. Active and associate NSNA membership may be extended six months beyond graduation from a student’s program in nursing, providing membership was renewed while the student was enrolled in a nursing program.
    4. Section 4. Dues
      1. The annual NSNA dues for active and associate members joining for one year shall be $40 per member, plus $0 state, and $5 school dues, or $10 school dues, if not an NSNA member.     
      2. If dues are not paid by the last meeting of the Fall semester, all dues will be increased by $15 if paid between the Fall semester and the February meeting. If the participant does not pay dues, they will not be eligible for receiving honor cords.
      3. National and state dues shall be payable directly to NSNA. NSNA shall remit to each state constituent the dues received on behalf of the constituent.  NSNA shall not collect nor remit school chapter dues. 
    5. Delegates
      1. Section 1. Delegate Representation
        • School constituents: Sonoma State CNSA Chapter when recognized as an official NSNA constituent, shall be entitled to one voting delegate and alternate at the NSNA House of Delegates, and in addition, shall be entitled to one voting delegate and alternate for every 50 members.
        • The Sonoma State CNSA Chapter delegate(s) and alternate shall be a member(s) in good standing in the chapter and shall be selected and/or elected by members of the school chapter at a proper meeting according to chapter bylaws. The school association may designate an alternate delegate for each delegate by one of the following two mechanisms:
          1. Selection and/or election by members of the school chapter according to chapter bylaws; or
          2. Written authorization to the State Board of Directors requesting them to appoint a member of the State Board to act as a state-appointed alternate for their school chapter.
        • School chapters shall approve the appointment.
        • The State Board of Directors shall verify that any state appointed alternate is a member in good standing of the NSNA and the state association.
        • A school chapter must have a selected and/or elected delegate present at the NSNA Convention in order to have a state-appointed alternate seated in the House of Delegates.
        • All alternates, whether school selected or state-appointed, shall have the same privileges as an elected delegate when seated in the House.
        • The school association shall be entitled to delegates according to the number of members in good standing in NSNA. Delegates shall be computed on the basis of the number of members in each constituent as evidenced by the annual dues received by NSNA on a date eight weeks prior to the annual meeting.
  • Elections
    • Only currently enrolled or continuing students, in the Nursing major, in good standing at Sonoma State University, may serve as: President, Vice President, Treasurer, or Membership Coordinator of this organization. All other officer positions may be held by Sonoma State University students, in good standing, either enrolled in Nursing or other majors.
    • SSUNSA members will hold an election for officers at the 2nd to the last meeting of the fall semester of each year.
    • Any unfilled officer positions will be voted upon and filled as needed.
    • The length of the term for each office is one year. Training for the new officer begins the day election results are posted until the last day of the following spring semester. The day that elections are posted the new officer term begins. (Term is from beginning of spring semester till the end of the Fall semester in the next year; i.e. January 2019-December 2019)
    • The election process is as follows:
  • A list of officer positions is generated and sent to all active members.
  • Those members interested in running for an officer position must submit a written statement of intent/interest to the Vice President to be compiled in an official ballot.
  • An official vote is then held in person at a general meeting by paper ballot. 
  • Majority voting will be used for election of officers. A quorum must vote. At least 1/3 plus one of all active members constitutes a quorum.
  • Officers
  1. Organization presidents and treasurers must be enrolled at SSU and earn a minimum of 6 semester units for undergraduate students or 3 semester units for graduate/credential students per term while holding office and must maintain a minimum cumulative 2.0 grade point average. In addition, the president and treasurer may not have earned 150 units or 125% of the total units needed for graduation, whichever is higher.
  2. Officers may vote on agenda items, such as spending club funds on an event, when it is deemed unreasonable to wait until the following monthly meeting. A unanimous decision among 5 voting officers is required for approval, and the item will be announced at the following club meeting. The officers required to vote include: President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Membership Coordinator.
  3. Some positions may be held by two individuals on a co-ticket, which will be called co-officers and will be determined by the individuals who would like to run for those positions. However, the positions of President, Vice President, and Treasurer may only be held by one individual.
  4. Officers are expected to attend general meetings and officer meetings with an 80% Attendance rate
  5. Officers are expected to communicate any necessary absences to the club president(s)
  6. If for some reason you are unable to fulfill your officer roles, it is your duty to notify the board and Faculty Advisor in writing of your need to “step down.”
  7. Officers are expected to be available to train your successor upon election to the board of officers
  8. Officers are expected to participate with club events as much as possible
  9. Club Presidents and Treasurers must be enrolled at SSU and earn a minimum of 6 semester units for undergraduate students or 3 semester units for graduate/credential students per term while holding office and must maintain a minimum cumulative 2.0 grade point average
  10. Only currently enrolled or continuing students in good standing (2.0 or higher) at Sonoma State University may serve as Officers of this organization. The Officers shall be:
  11. The President: presides over each meeting; guides the Board in setting and fulfilling priorities and goals for the year; books meeting spaces through Conference and Event Services on campus; informs members about upcoming events; serves as a resource person for members, faculty and outside sources; conducts administrative duties as they arise; is responsible for preparing agendas for all meetings; maintains current membership lists; and serves as a liaison between chapter and state CNSA board. Must be a nursing student in good standing.
  12. The Vice President: is responsible for writing and distributing reminders for meetings and agendas; keep attendance list at all general meetings and a running list of all active members; creates and maintains honor cord hours spreadsheet; acts as resource person for members, faculty, and outside sources; responsible for reviewing and recommending changes in the bylaws; and assumes the duties of the President in the event the President is unable to serve. Responsible for updating SSUNSA members on all political and legislative current events affecting nurses and the community and be in contact with SSU Nursing graduates. Must be a nursing student in good standing.
  13. The Secretary: is to take and type minutes for all meetings and forward to the Board and members and post to SSUNSA website; writes thank you cards to sponsors, guests, and faculty members, when appropriate; update and maintain files, and other administrative assistant duties. Responsible for taking minutes at all meetings. Responsible for updating and maintaining the website for SSUNSA which includes posting minutes, agendas, events, bulletins, pictures, etc.
  14. The Treasurer: monitors all SSUNSA funds (current balance, deposits, and withdraws); writes check requests; allocates money based on the vote of the Board approval; submits treasury reports at each meeting; works with the Board to create annual budget; collects club dues and deposits into club account through CSLIS Office; keeps a running list of who has paid dues for the current year. Must be a Nursing Student in good standing.
  15. The Events Director(s): organizes club events, community-based projects each semester that help to enrich the Sonoma County Community, and fundraising activities. Must attend all events that the individual organizes.
  16. The Mentorship & Membership Director(s): responsible for communicating with “Mentors” and “Mentees” regarding the Mentoring Program in collaboration with the Faculty Advisor. Aides in creating and implementing Mentoring policies. Organizes mentor/ mentee activities, Q&A sessions, Skills Lab Days volunteers, and good luck goodie bags for junior class before first ATI final. Must be a nursing student in good standing.
  17. The Marketing Director(s): responsible for designing all club merchandise; works with other agencies to create and purchase merchandise for the club and members; helps with all marketing and advertising for club events.
  18. The Pre-Nursing Liaison: Communicates with other pre-nursing students about meetings and events; works with Mentor- Mentee Coordinator to accumulate a list of pre-nursing students who want a Junior class mentor and aids in mentoring events. Must be a pre-nursing student in good standing.
  19. Volunteer Coordinator: Actively reaches out into the community (schools, race events, health education, etc.) and with local hospitals to find volunteer opportunities for the Nursing Club. Coordinates with the President, Club Members, and Event Coordinators to notify club of event, sign up volunteers, and provide them with information regarding event start time and expectations. 
  20. Social Media Director(s): Facilitates the Club’s Facebook page and Instagram account, posting events, sharing pictures, etc. Sends out monthly Club Newsletter.
  21. The Faculty Advisor: is a member of the SSU nursing faculty or administrative staff. Oversees club events and meetings and serves as a resource for Officers and members. Meeting minutes must be forwarded to the Faculty Advisor.
  22. Procedure for Removal of officers: “3 Strikes Rule”
  • 1st failure to meet officer requirements: Verbal “check in” by 2 Officer(s) of the Club
  • 2nd occurrence: verbal warning with probationary period (one month)
  • 3rd occurrence: Majority vote of the Board (1/2 of Board plus 1) for resignation of delinquent officer; if approved, written request for resignation

The delinquent officer is given the opportunity to resign at any point in the above process

  1. If an Officer is removed from office or resigns from officer, the board will hold an emergency election to fill the position.
  1. Discipline of Members
  2. All complaints alleging violations of the Student Conduct Code, Title 5, section 41301, et seq., shall be investigated pursuant to Executive Order 1073 and/or 1074 (in cases involving allegations of unlawful discrimination, harassment or retaliation based on protected status). Investigations and other proceedings under Executive Orders 1073 and 1074 shall be conducted by campus administration, not student organizations, and this organization shall refer any complaints alleging subject matters covered by Executive Orders 1073 and 1074 to the campus Vice President for Student Affairs or other designee for investigation and resolution.
  3. Alumni Committee
      1. An Alumni Committee (AC) will be established; its members having the following responsibilities:
        1. AC Members will remain actively involved in SSUNSA activities by providing advice, support, and perspective to the SSUNSA.
        2. AC Members will make themselves available as informal liaisons to local healthcare facilities and networks where they work or have existing relationships.
        3. Other responsibilities as directed and determined by the AC Members on a continuing basis.
      2. AC Members will attend, at minimum and in person, one SSUNSA meeting during the Fall semester, one SSUNSA meeting in the Spring semester, and at least four hours of SSUNSA club activities exclusive of SSUNSA meetings. AC Members will fulfill all other membership eligibility requirements appropriate for their enrollment status while serving on the AC.
      3. Members are eligible to join the AC under the following circumstances:
        1. They are a member of the graduating pre-licensure BSN class.
        2. Following graduation, they intend to seek immediate employment as a Registered Nurse in a clinical role or apply immediately to graduate schools of Nursing.
        3. Following graduation, they intend to live in, or work in, Sonoma County or any county geographically contiguous with Sonoma County.
      4. Up to three eligible SSUNSA members may be selected to join the AC per academic year. Eligibility will be determined:
        1. Via an electronic ballot, open for a period of 48-72 hours, and open to all SSUNSA members who are otherwise entitled to vote in club matters.
        2. Members voting may vote in favor of up to three candidates.
        3. Interested and eligible members will volunteer their name for consideration. Members may not be nominated.
        4. An announcement of interested members will take place during the February meeting of the SSUNSA. The ballot will take place within 7 days, and an announcement of selected members will occur in March.
      5. The practices and membership requirements of the AC will conform to all rules established by the AC in addition to those provided in these bylaws.
  1. Other Committees
    1. Officers can organize and delegate to committees to facilitate events as needed.
  2. Meetings
    1. General meetings will be held once a month during the academic year at a predetermined time by the Board. The board and special committee meetings will be scheduled as needed.
    2. Consensus voting will be used at Board meetings, and majority will be used at general meetings.
    3. Authorization of SSUNSA events will need to be proposed to the board for approval, and if approved by the Board, will be added to the calendar.
  • Finances
    1. Dues are to be determined yearly by the new board of officers and are payable at the time an individual joins SSUNSA. A discounted price will be available to those that are NSNA members which will be determined yearly by the new board of officers. Individuals with financial hardship may petition the Board for a waiver of dues or partial scholarship. Dues must be collected by the second meeting of the academic year. Special arrangements must be made with the Treasurer if dues are paid at any other time.
    2. The Treasurer will be responsible for all accountable funds, expenditures, and bookkeeping.
    3. All student organization funds will be held in an on campus account with the Student Involvement Office.
    4. An SSUNSA member is eligible for a scholarship, related to nursing conferences. Preference will be given to NSNA, CNSA, and ANA events. A member must turn in a written request for funds at least one meeting prior to event/conference. The amount of scholarship will be determined by the Board.
  • Advisor
    1. The Advisor: is a member of the SSU nursing faculty or administrative staff.
    2. The Board elects the advisor, and the advisor will be formally invited to be the SSUNSA advisor.
    3. The term of service for the advisor will be one year.
  • Amendments to Constitution
    1. A written amendment to the Constitution must be approved by the above voting process [majority vote] at an official meeting. A quorum must be established before the vote will be considered official. A quorum will constitute one-third plus one of total membership.
    2. The amended constitution/bylaws must be approved by and kept in file with the Student Involvement office.