ALUMNI ASSOCIATION BYLAWS
ARTICLE I – NAME
The name of the organization shall be the Mercyhurst University National Alumni Association (hereinafter ‘Association’).
ARTICLE II – OBJECTIVES
The objectives of this organization shall be:
- To assist and extend the interests and influences of Mercyhurst University, and
- To promote fellowship and cohesiveness among Mercyhurst University Alumni.
ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP
Any person who has received a degree from Mercyhurst University, formerly Mercyhurst College, shall be a member of the Association.
ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS
The Officers of the Association shall be President, Vice President, and Secretary.
All officers shall perform duties prescribed by these bylaws and parliamentary authority.
The President shall preside at all meetings of the Alumni Association and Alumni Association Board of Directors’ meetings; prepare, with the assistance of the Advancement Office, the agenda for Alumni Association Board of Directors’ meetings, and as necessary, represent the Alumni at University and alumni functions. The President is also an ex-officio, voting member of the University Board of Trustees.
The President shall have general supervision over the work of the Association members in conjunction with the Advancement department and the ongoing university mission.
The Vice President shall assist the President in promoting the general interest of the Alumni Association and shall perform the duties of the President in their absence, upon request of the President. In the event of resignation or disability of the President, the Vice President shall become President for the balance of the unexpired term. While not a requirement, the Vice President shall normally be nominated to succeed the President when a vacancy occurs.
The Secretary should maintain complete and current minutes of the Association’s meetings, Board of Directors’ meetings, and correspondence. The Secretary shall also maintain a complete up-to-date roster of the Alumni Association Board and terms of appointment. They shall be responsible for maintaining a certified copy of the bylaws.
If an Officer’s term on the Alumni Association Board of Directors terminates during his term as an Officer, their term on the Alumni Board shall be extended until the end of his term as an Officer.
ARTICLE V – ALUMNI BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Section A: Membership of the Board of Directors
- The Alumni Association Board of Directors shall consist of not less than eighteen (18) and no more than twenty-five (25) voting members, three (3)
of whom shall be officers of the Association and the remainder as members-at-large. In addition, geographical chapter representatives should coordinate as non-voting members of the Association in conjunction with the Advancement department. Should a member-at-large also hold a spot as chapter president, she and/or he will remain a voting member of the Association.
- The University President, Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, Assistant Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, immediately
preceding President of the Association (if not serving as a member at large), and the President of the Student Alumni Association, or such student representative(s), up to two students, as he or she may designate, shall be ex-officio non-voting members of the Alumni Association Board of
Section B: Duties of the Alumni Association Board of Directors
Members of the Alumni Board of Directors shall:
- Represent the Alumni of Mercyhurst University;
- Be responsible for the transactions of necessary business of the Alumni Association between meetings;
- Actively participate in at least one Advancement department project of their choice during each fiscal year in order to advance the strategic goals
established by the Board of Directors.
- Attend in person or video conference a mandatory three out of four Board meetings per year.
A member, with prior notification to the President, may fulfill their obligation to attend a Board meeting by participating via telephone or audio/visual conference calling. Any costs associated with such attendance shall be borne by the participating member, however, the President may waive this limit if in their discretion a valid reason exists for such waiver.
A member of the board will be required to participate in 3 out of probable 4 official board meetings per year. If a member is unable to attend, proper
notification, preferably in writing, must be given to one of the Officers prior to the meeting’s start.
Any unexcused absence from a Board Meeting will result in the following:
- First offense: a call from the Officers reminding the member of position with verbal warning;
- Second offense: formal written letter of warning with suggested outcome;
- Third offense: dismissal from the Board as a voting member.
- Are appointed for a term of three (3) years, beginning September 1 of the year of their nomination to the Board of Directors.
- May serve no more than three (3) consecutive terms without at least a two (2) year absence from the Alumni Association Board of Directors.
The Alumni Association Board of Directors, by majority vote, may award the title of Director Emeritus upon current or former Association Board members in recognition of outstanding service and/or in the interest of ensuring the legacy of the University is promoted within the Association. Upon expiration of their current term, a Director Emeritus shall continue to represent the interests of the Association. Directors Emeritus shall be invited to all meetings and participate in Board deliberations but are not granted voting privileges. Directors Emeritus shall retain their title for life or until voluntary resignation. Members must have served at least eight (8) total years before being eligible for emeritus status.
ARTICLE VI – MEETINGS
A minimum of four (4) meetings of the Alumni Association Board of Directors hall be held during each calendar year. The President shall call regularly
scheduled meetings during the fall, winter, spring, and summer seasons. Other meetings may be scheduled as necessary in accordance with Section B. The date, time, and location of all meetings shall be specified by communication to the members at least two (2) weeks prior to the meeting
Special meetings may be called by the President, or the Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving at the request of the President. The date, time, and location of all meetings shall be specified by communication to the members at least two (2) weeks prior to the meeting.
In lieu of a special meeting, the President, or the Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving at the request of the President, may submit a statement of matters to the members of the Alumni Association Board of Directors for a vote via electronic, regular mail or teleconference.
A quorum shall consist of at least fifty-one percent (51%) of voting Board Members.
ARTICLE VII – APPOINTMENTS AND ELECTIONS
The Board Development Committee shall be responsible for soliciting nominations for members and officers of the Alumni Association Board of Directors whose terms are expiring or whenever a vacancy occurs, and shall be responsible for the preparation of a report, which includes its slate of nominated members and/or officers to the Alumni Association Board of Directors. The Board Development Committee shall seek to ensure the composition of the Alumni Association Board is adequately representative of the various demographics and characteristics of the entire Association, including but not limited to class year, race, gender, skill set, geographic region, campus representation, and degree/major field(s) of study. In seeking nominees, the Board Development Committee may be assisted in their efforts with input by other members of the Board of Directors, university staff, and other members of the Association.
The Board Development Committee, via a personal interview, shall be responsible for ensuring all potential nominees have a comprehensive understanding of the purpose and function(s) of the Alumni Association and the Board of Directors, including specific responsibilities and expectations outlined in these bylaws. Particular attention should be given to expectations of attendance, participation, and philanthropy. The interview will include the Committee Chair and at least one member of the Executive Committee; additional members may be invited to participate.
Nominees must be members of the Association and shall submit an application and background information as specified by the Committee. All nominations should be communicated to the Alumni Association Board at least two weeks prior to the meeting in which the nominated slate is to be voted upon. The number of members elected should be sufficient to meet the requirements of Article V, Section A-l.
This section applies if the Alumni Association Board’s voting membership is at or below eighteen (18) or an officer vacancy occurs. Members who are elected to fill a vacancy that occurs prior to the end of the former member or officer’s regular term shall serve only until the end of that former member or officer’s regular term at which time the member may submit his or her candidacy for re-election pursuant to Section A of this Article. Time served in filling a vacant position is not considered in the calculation of term limits outlined in Article V, Section D.
The term of office for Officers of the Association shall be two (2) years. An officer may serve no more than two (2) consecutive terms in the same position. Election of Officers for the Association shall take place at the summer meeting. Upon election, an officer’s term shall commence on September 1.
ARTICLE VIII – ANNUAL MEETING
An annual meeting of the Association may be held at Homecoming and shall be
open to all alumni.
ARTICLE IX – FINANCES AND FISCAL YEAR
Neither dues nor subscription charges shall be assessed upon the Alumni by the
The fiscal year of the Association shall coincide with that of the University, beginning June 1 and ending May 31.
Regular operation of the Association’s activities, programs, and events is financed through the Alumni Relations Office as part of the University’s annual
budgeting process. For each fiscal year, the Alumni Association Board of Directors may submit to the University, through the Director of Alumni Relations
and Annual Giving, proposals and/or budget requests for the operation of the Association.
All funds received from any revenue producing products, services, and affinity programs endorsed by the University or the Association will be directly applied to the Office of Alumni Relations for sole use by the Association.
The financial records of the Association are public information and shall be made available to the membership, board members, and the public as necessary.
The Executive Committee, acting in the sole discretion of a majority of its members, shall have the authority to expend up to $1,000 between regular
meetings of the Alumni Board of Directors. Any such expenditure must be reported to the full Alumni Association Board of Directors at the next regular
meeting. The expenditure of amounts greater than $1,000 shall require majority approval of the full Board. Purchase requests raised by the Alumni Board of Directors shall be submitted to the Department of University Advancement for review. With approval, the Department of University Advancement budget will cover the purchases needed.
The Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving shall be responsible for a quarterly report on the status of the Mercyhurst University Annual Fund, as well as a financial report on each alumni event held by the Association.
ARTICLE X – STANDING COMMITTEES
The standing committees of the Alumni Board of Directors shall be as follows: Executive Committee, Nominating Committee, and Board Development
The Alumni Board President, the Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, and the Assistant Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving shall be exofficio members of all committees.
The Executive Committee shall consist of all officers of the Alumni Board and, for one year following the expiration of their term, the immediately preceding President of the Alumni Board.
The Board Development Committee shall adhere to Article VII, Section A, for selection of members-at-large. The President shall appoint a Chairman of the Board Development Committee and the Committee shall consist of at least three (3) additional members.
- When nominating members-at-large, the committee should consider the various demographics and characteristics of the entire Association, including but not limited to class year, race, gender, skill set, geographic region, campus representation, and degree / major field(s) of study.
- The slate of nominees for officer positions shall be brought before the Board at the summer meeting. Officers shall be elected from current members of the Alumni Board of Directors.
The Nominating Committee shall consist of no less than three (3) board members and shall be overseen by the Vice President of the Board to assist with
the selection of the annual Alumni Awards.
Members will assist the Director of Alumni Relations in nominating and selecting prospective alumni for annual awards. Alumni to be awarded will be selected based on strict criteria and guidelines.
Special Committees may be appointed by the President as necessary, and/or upon recommendation by current board members, with the approval of the Board. All current Board members shall be engaged in active projects toward the university mission to be regulated by the Advancement department.
Committee membership is not limited to members of the Alumni Association Board. Committees may, at the discretion of their respective chairpersons,
extend participation rights to other members of the Association or other affiliates of Mercyhurst University with the approval of the Executive Board.
ARTICLE XI – PARLIAMENTARY PROCEDURE
The Secretary shall serve as Parliamentarian; the Parliamentarian shall interpret all questions of parliamentary law. Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall govern the organization in all manners of procedure not specifically covered by the bylaws.
ARTICLE XII- AMENDMENT OF BY-LAWS
These bylaws may be amended at any regular meeting of the Alumni Association Board of Directors by a quorum vote (as defined in Article VI, Section D) of the Alumni Association Board, provided that the notice of the proposed changes be communicated to each member at least two (2) weeks prior to the meeting designated for voting on such amendments.
Revised and approved by a quorum vote of the MU National Alumni Association Board of Directors – June 11, 2022.