Article I. Name
Section 1. The name of this organization shall be the Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community.
Article II. Purpose
Section 1. The purpose of this organization shall be:
To unite students at Duke University who share a common passion for politics, philosophy, and economics in an immersive living and learning community.
To foster a vibrant intellectual space where the political, philosophical, and economic issues of today may be discussed and debated among all students.
To expand general student interest and knowledge of political, philosophical, and economic principles and their manifestation in the world today.
Article III. Membership
Section 1. All undergraduate students at Duke University are eligible for membership.
Section 2. The total number of individuals that can be official members of the Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community will be determined each year by the space allocated to the group by HDRL.
Section 3. All current first-year students, sophomores, and juniors will be eligible to apply for membership in the Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community for the following academic year.
Section 4. The application will be distributed to all eligible undergraduates no later than February 1 of each year.
Section 5. All current members of the Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community will have a “right of return” as a member the following year, provided they do not lose such a privilege, as outlined in Article III Section 6 and Article III Section 7.
Section 6. All members are expected to attend at least three (3) academic events per semester. Any member that does not achieve this minimum quota will lose their right of return for the following year.
Section 7. In rare circumstances, the Executive Board has the ability to reject the right of return privilege by a two-thirds vote or more. The party whose right of return is in question shall have the opportunity to attend the Executive Board meeting where such a decision is made and speak on their behalf before the vote is taken.
Section 8. Membership and right of return policies will be subject to approval by HDRL.
Article IV. Non-Discrimination
Section 1. The Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community shall not discriminate on the basis of political ideology, race, color, national and ethnic origin, disability, sexual orientation or preference, gender, or age in its membership, activities, and projects. The Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community shall not tolerate harassment of any kind.
Article V. Executive Board
Section 1. The Executive Board of the Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community will consist of a President, Vice President of External Affairs, Vice President of Internal Affairs, Treasurer, Social Chair(s), House Course Instructor(s), and Social Media Coordinator.
Section 2. The responsibilities of each member of the Executive Board are as follows:
The President is responsible for promoting intellectual climate at Duke by coordinating the executive board weekly.
They are expected to oversee and plan the following (at minimum):
– House Course every Fall
– House trip to D.C. or other city every semester
– Lectures series of 4 lectures per semester
– Other Campus Programming (open dinners, debates, media watch parties, etc.)
– Social activities (non-academic)
The President will be the campus point person and representative for the program. They will work closely with DSG, Dr. Gillespie, the faculty director, the Office of Undergraduate Education and other groups to conduct surveys and create a report after the first year with recommendations on whether to expand the program. They will help teach the House Course.
They will also be a point person for recruitment purposes and will work on campus outreach and programming. The President must coordinate with other campus groups (such as DPU, DPR, Duke Democrats, Duke Republicans, FOCUS, Duke Debate, etc.) and departments (Sanford, SSRI, Political Science, etc.) on collaborative events with the aim of spreading intellectual discourse at Duke and publicizing the house. In addition, the President shall serve as an ex-officio member of any committee that is created within the organization.
Vice President of External Affairs
The Vice President of Externals has two main responsibilities. First is organizing the lecture series by identifying potential speakers, contacting them, and arranging their visits to campus. They are responsible for marketing these events been hosted by the house. Second, they must organize a per-semester house trip (for example to D.C.) and the trip schedule.
Vice President of Internal Affairs
The Vice President of Internals has a range of responsibilities related to the house and internal programming. They will work with the VP of Externals on planning the house lectures series by organizing the logistics inside the house (food, furniture, etc.). The VP of Internals will focus on linking the house course material to programming (such as dinners, debates, documentary screenings, etc.).
The Treasurer is required to work on allocation of the budget between the various activities. They will work with the Office of Undergraduate Education and Dr. Gillespie on securing funding for the following year and helping each section (lecture series, house trips, campus programming, social activities, house course materials) develop a budget.
The Social Chair(s) is responsible for organizing all social activities. These are related less to the academic component of the living-learning community. Responsibilities include planning weekly social events such as group dinners, movie nights, outings, and social gatherings. The Social Chair is also responsible for further recruitment to the house by helping the VP of Externals publicize the events being planned by the house.
House Course Instructor(s)
The House Course Instructor(s) is responsible for teaching the house course for the incoming members of the house. They are chiefly responsible for designing the curriculum, arranging professors to come speak, assigning homework. It will take place every Fall and be co-taught with the President.
Social Media Coordinator
The social media coordinator is responsible for developing social media pages for the organization. They will help publicize LLC events to the Duke community.
Section 3. The Executive Board shall hold, at a minimum, one meeting every two weeks.
Article VI. Advisor
Section 1. A full-time faculty or staff member of Duke University shall be selected by the executive board and serve as an advisor to the organization. The advisor shall be an ex-officio member of the organization and all of its committees.
Article VII. Removal of Officers
Section 1. Officers may be removed with a two-thirds (⅔) vote of the general body. The officer in question must be notified of the vote of removal at least one (1) week in advance and shall have the opportunity to speak before the general body prior to the vote.
Article VIII. Meetings
Section 1. Regular meetings of the Visions of Freedom Living and Learning Community shall be held at least monthly during the Fall and Spring academic semesters and at the discretion of the President at other times at an on-campus venue. Quorum shall consist of at least three (3) members of the executive board and 50% of the general body.
Section 2. Meetings and voting shall be governed by a modified Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised, tenth edition.
Article IX. Committees
Section 1. Committees of the organization shall be created from time-to-time by the executive board in order to organize and distribute the workload of the organization. Committees shall be governed by the Constitution and shall not have authority over the executive board or the general body.
Article X. Election of Officers
Section 1. Elections must be openly publicized for at least two (2) weeks and open to the membership of the organization.
Section 2. The President, Vice President of External Affairs, Vice President of Internal Affairs, Treasurer, and Social Chair for the following year will be elected before the end of every academic year in April. If no candidate for any particular race receives a majority, the candidate with the least number of votes shall be eliminated from the race, and the body shall vote on the remaining candidates again. This process should be repeated until a candidate receives a simple majority of the votes.
Section 3. Only living learning community members for the following year are eligible to participate in the elections, including run for executive positions, nominate members for executive positions, and vote in the elections. After the elections are held, there will be a written application process to be House Course Instructor and Social Media Coordinator. The President will select one or two instructors and a Social Media Coordinator based on the applications submitted.
Article XI. Amendments to the Constitution
Section 1. Amendments to this constitution may be presented by any current member of the Visions of Freedom Living Learning Community.
Section 2. Proposed amendments should be presented to the Executive Board at one of its official meetings, and must have have the signatures of no less than twenty-five percent of the total members.
Section 3. Following the submission of an amendment proposal with all necessary signatures, the Executive Board shall coordinate vote by all members of the Living Learning Community, where a two-thirds (⅔) majority in favor shall result in the passage and adoption of the amendment.
Finalized: 4 September 2016
By: James Ferencsik T’17, Cullen Tyndall T’19, Dr. Michael Gillespie
Ratified: 5 September 2016 by Executive Board: James Ferencsik T’17, William Tong T’19, Cullen Tyndall T’19, David Wohlever T’19, Kat Zhao T’19, Weiyao Wang T’19, Peter Hase T’19