Duke DCSSA Constitution

Translated by Fang Liu

The Constitution of DCSSA was born in Term 1998~1999. It was then modified by the DCSSA Term 1999~2000 on Sept. 9, 1999, which is also the current version. What you see below is the Chinese version of the Constitution (draft 1999~2000). It also has a Chinese version.

To further specify how to abide to the DCSSA Constitution, DCSSA Oversight Committee unanimously approved the decision of establishing a Resolution to the Constitution, which explains detailed specifics when applying the Constitution. The first draft of the Resolution was born on June 21, 2000.


Duke Chinese Student and Scholar Association (DCSSA), a non-profit organization consisting of Chinese students, scholars, staff and faculty at Duke University, is established with the mission of mutual help and service.

The purpose of DCSSA is to serve and consolidate its Duke Chinese community as well as those interested in Chinese culture, promote the exchange among its members, Duke community and Duke alumni.

CSSA adopts Democracy as the ultimate principle for its operation.


Section 1. Criteria for Membership

DCSSA is open to any duly registered student, scholar, researcher, professor and staff in good academic standing at Duke University (including all the departments and schools, medical center and its affiliates). All members enjoy the rights and undertake the obligations of this organization.

Section 2. Rights and Obligations

All members enjoy equal rights of voting and being voted. They are entitled to oversee and question the work of Executive Committee and Oversight Committee. They are entitled to participate in all the activities initiated by this organization and shall make their due contributions to this organization.


Section 1. CSSA Member meeting

a) CSSA Member meeting is the ultimate power structure. The president of CSSA shall serve as the presiding officer over the conference, and notify members the venue and time at least 15 days prior to the scheduled conference. The Oversight Committee is also entitled to organize member meeting. The conference can be an e-conference, or held in convenient time and venue.

b) All members are entitled to oversee the President and assemble the conference, as specified in Section 2 of Article III.

Section 2. President and Executive Committee

a) The president, who has the full responsibility for its work, administers CSSA Executive Committee. The president shall be elected according to Section 2 of Article III. The term of the president is one year, extending from May 1 the current year to April 30 of the next year. The president can be reelected.

b) The Oversight Committee shall oversee the president.

c) The Executive Committee is the standing administration of CSSA, consisting of no less than five members (including the president). Members of the Executive Committee shall be appointed by and report to the president. They shall be filed by the Oversight Committee. The president is entitled to replace the members.

d) The president shall notify the replacement of Executive Committee members to the Oversight Committee and its members within 24 hours and submit a detailed written report within 48 hours to explain the reasons.

e) The president shall appoint new members if the Executive Committee has less than five members.

f) Proceeding from the principle of this organization, the president and the Executive Committee shall be responsible for the routine work of CSSA and organizing entertainment, sports and academic activities.

g) The president shall take responsibility to organize people to welcome incoming Chinese students.

h) The president contacts individuals and organizations on behalf of CSSA outside of Duke University and reports to the Oversight Committee about major issues.

i) The president shall not participate in any political activities in the name of CSSA without the acceptance of Member meeting.

j) The president shall not take the position of Treasurer concurrently.

k) The president shall publicize work report and financial report every December and within 30 days after his or her term.

l) The president shall appoint an acting president in his or her absence or incapacity.

Section 3. Oversight Committee

a) Over August 23, 2004 and legislature, is responsible for overseeing the president and the Executive Committee, and for drafting, amending the Constitution of CSSA and overseeing its implementation.

b) The Oversight Committee is entitled to interpret the Constitution.

c) The Oversight Committee members shall not be the members of Executive Committee concurrently.

d) The Oversight Committee shall consist of three members and exercise the rule of majority vote. The members shall be elected along with the presidential election. The term is one year, extending from May 1 the current year to April 30 the next year. The members can be reelected.

e) The Oversight Committee shall be kept informed of the work of the president and the Executive Committee and request a report from the president. The president shall report to the Committee in 7 days upon notice.

f) The Oversight Committee is entitled to assemble Member meeting. It shall notify the CSSA members 15 days before the conference and submit a motion.

g) The Oversight Committee shall not interfere with the routine work of the president.

h) The Oversight Committee shall act in the place of the president and the Executive Committee if the Member meeting impeaches the president.

i) 15% or over 15% of members (no less than 30 members) can request convening a Member meeting. The Oversight Committee shall assemble Member meeting in 30 days after the request. It shall notify the CSSA members and issue the agenda 15 days prior to the scheduled conference.


Section 1. CSSA election follows the principle of democracy and openness. The operation process shall be transparent.

Section 2. Election Procedures

a) The election shall be held between January 1 and April 15 each year. The Oversight Committee shall organize the election. The presidential candidates shall not participate in the election organization. The Oversight Committee shall notify the schedule at least 30 days prior to the election, and issue the candidate list, statements and profiles 7 days prior to the election.

b) The Oversight Committee shall notify as many CSSA members as possible the election schedule in a reasonable and feasible manner.

c) The Oversight Committee shall adopt a feasible way for voting (including e-voting).

d) The candidates shall submit to the Oversight Committee their written statements two weeks prior to the election.

Section 3. The president shall be duly elected if he or she gets the greatest number of votes. If there are over two candidates with the same votes, the second round of election shall be held in 7 days.

Section 4. The election for the members of the Oversight Committee shall be held simultaneously with the presidential election. The three candidates with the greatest number of votes shall be elected. If the members of the Oversight Committee cannot be elected due to the same votes for more than one candidate, the second round of election shall be held within 7 days.


Section 1. The election shall adopt secret ballots. The host of the election shall not publicize the content of ballot without the permission of voter.

Section 2. The Member meeting shall vote and two-thirds of the votes is required for:

a) Amendment to the Constitution.

b) Impeachment of the president or members of the Oversight Committee.

If there is no specific requirement, other activities shall be approved by a simple majority vote under the condition that no less than 15 percent of CSSA members shall vote.

Section 3. CSSA members can trust others to vote for him or her. He or she shall submit a written trust statement to the Oversight Committee. Members can vote abstention. The abstentions shall be counted as valid votes.

Section 4. The Constitution shall be ratified by the approval of two-thirds of the votes (Under the premise that no less than 15 percent of CSSA members shall vote.)


Section 1. The CSSA president can be impeached for the following reasons:

a) The breach of his public duties.

b) Any convicted crimes, misrepresentation of financial situations, severe interference with democratic process in election, and other activities which would make his position a serious negative impact on CSSA.

Section 2. The members of the Oversight Committee can be impeached for the following reasons:

a) Failure to take the responsibility of oversight to impeach the president whose activities lead to impeachment according to the Constitution.

b) Serious bleach and abuse of power in the process of election.

c) Other serious corruptive activities.


Section 1. This organization shall adopt the principle of openness and transparency for its financial system.

Section 2. It shall have a treasurer, who shall be nominated by the president and approved by the Oversight Committee. The treasurer shall report directly to the president and shall prepare expenditure reports and budgetary reviews upon the request of the Oversight Committee. The treasurer shall guarantee sound financial statements. Members of this organization are entitled to ask for the disclosure of financial statements.

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