Article III: Governance of the National Society
Section 1: The Board of Directors
Section 2: Duties of the Board of Directors
Section 3: The Treasurer
Section 4: Finance Committee
Section 5: Executive Secretary
Tau Alpha Pi National Honor Society
Tau Alpha Pi of ASEE, Inc. is organized exclusively for charitable, scientific and educational purposes, more specifically to provide recognition for a high standard of scholarship among students in engineering technology programs: to promote and encourage scholastic achievement by offering membership to outstanding students; and to engender certain desirable qualities of personality, intellect, and character among its members. The American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE) is the membership Society for engineering and engineering technology education.
The name of this Society shall be Tau Alpha Pi of ASEE, Inc. and the organization shall be designated as a National Honor Society for students in Engineering Technology programs, hereafter known as the National Society or the Society.
There will be an official motto, colors, insignia, emblem and key as specified in the by-laws.
The National Society shall consist of a Board of Directors and various Affiliate Chapters of the Society.
The Board of Directors shall consist of twelve individuals. The Board of Directors shall be responsible for all matters of governance and policy for the Society.
Affiliate Chapters of the National Society consist of local organizations established according to the process specified by Article V herein. Affiliate Chapters shall be designated by the state name and a Greek letter, the letter signifying the order of affiliation of the chapter in the state.
- Eight of the twelve members of the Board of Directors shall be elected from the four Tau Alpha Pi Zones, defined to be the ASEE zones, two from each Zone, by the Affiliate Chapter. The remaining four board members shall be the elected ASEE President, the Tau Alpha Pi Treasurer, the elected ASEE Chair of the Engineering Technology Council and the Executive Secretary (ex-officio, without vote). The Executive Secretary of the National Society shall be the ASEE Executive Director. The Tau Alpha Pi Treasurer shall be the elected ASEE Vice President of Finance.
- The term of office of the Zone elected Board Members shall be two years.
- Nominations of an individual to Board membership representing a Zone may be made by any Affiliate Chapter in that Zone according to the provisions of that Affiliate Chapter’s by-laws.
- A Chapter nomination of an individual to represent a Zone on the Board of Directors shall be submitted to the Executive Secretary by Affiliate Chapter Chairs two months in advance of the scheduled election date. Each nomination must vouch that the nominee is willing to serve, and include a brief biographical summary of the nominee.
- The Executive Secretary shall notify each Affiliate Chapter of the impending election at least one month before the date for closing nominations, and supply each Affiliate Chapter with biographical data on each nominee at least one month prior to the election.
- Each Zone shall elect one Board member each year by a plurality vote of official representatives, one per Affiliate Chapter, represented at the Tau Alpha Pi Annual Meeting. Official representatives of each Affiliate Chapter must present certification of their designation signed by their Affiliate Chapter Chair. For a Zone election to be final, a majority of the Zone’s Affiliate Chapters must be represented. In the event that fewer than a majority of Chapters in a Zone are represented, the ballot will be distributed to each of the Affiliate Chapter Chairs in that Zone, and the winner shall be the candidate receiving a plurality of the ballots returned. In such cases, electronic ballots are authorized.
- Board members-elect shall take office on January 1 after their election.
- A Zone elected board member may serve for a maximum of two successive terms.
- Each year, the Board of Directors shall elect the Society President from its members.
- The Board of Directors may appoint a Director to complete the term of any Zone elected Director vacancy which may occur or, at its discretion, may leave the vacancy unfilled until the next regular election. At the first regular election after such a vacancy occurs, candidates for this vacancy as well as the regular annual Zone position will be nominated and elected.
- The Board of Directors shall have jurisdiction over all the affairs of the Society, subject to the provisions of the Society’s Constitution and By-laws, but shall not interfere with the autonomy of the individual Affiliate Chapters, except as specified by the Society’s constitution and By-laws.
- The Board of Directors shall have oversight of all publications of the Society.
- The Board of Directors may levy assessments on Affiliate Chapters for purposes of the Society’s support.
- The Board of Directors, by means of an annual budget, shall authorize the collection of fees, assessments and other monies and the disbursement of funds for the Society.
- The Board of Directors shall interpret the Constitution and By-laws of the National Society and shall serve as an advisory body to any Affiliate Chapter requesting aid.
- The Board of Directors may amend the Constitution of the National Society by a three-fourths majority vote, after concurrence by a three-fourths majority vote of the Affiliate Chapters.
- The President of the Society shall preside at all meetings of the Society and the Board of Directors, and shall perform the other duties implied by the office.
- Board members shall receive no compensation, and travel expenses to and from meetings shall be paid for by the individual or that individual’s institution or Affiliate Chapter. The Finance Committee shall have the authority to approve exceptions to this provision.
- The Tau Alpha Pi Treasurer shall provide oversight of the finances of the Society, review the audited financial statements, make a financial report at each meeting of the Board of Directors and at the Tau Alpha Pi annual meeting, and present the annual budget to Board members.
- The Finance Committee shall be comprised of the Tau Alpha Pi President, the elected chair of the ASEE Engineering Technology Council, the elected ASEE President, the Tau Alpha Pi Executive Secretary and the Tau Alpha Pi Treasurer.
- The Finance Committee must approve by majority vote any measure that substantially impacts the finances of the Society before that measure is submitted to the full Board for approval.
- The Finance Committee shall meet at each Tau Alpha Pi annual meeting and at such other times as the Treasurer may designate. The Finance Committee may also conduct its business by mail or electronic means.
- The Tau Alpha Pi Executive Secretary shall have no vote on the Board of Directors but shall have a vote on the Finance Committee.
- The Executive Secretary shall keep the official copies of the Constitution and By-laws and other documents of the Society; shall take and keep the minutes of the Board of Directors; conduct the correspondence of the National Society; and shall compile, submit to the Board of Directors for approval, and distribute all official publications of the Society including a Society annual report.
- The Executive Secretary shall issue charters, membership certificates, and other relevant materials upon approval of the Board of Directors and shall issue such documents and periodicals as provided for in the Constitution and By-laws or as deemed necessary by the Executive Secretary and/or the Board of Directors.
- The Executive Secretary shall keep the financial records of the Society, have the authority to sign contracts and hire or contract the necessary services to carry out the functions of the Society.
- The Executive Secretary shall collect all monies, administer all funds, and act as sole disbursing agent for the Society, under authority granted by this Constitution and the Board of Directors.
- The Executive Secretary shall keep the ritual and other elements of secrecy of the Society.
A Director who wishes to resign from the Tau Alpha Pi Board of Directors shall submit their resignation in writing to the Executive Director along with the effective date of the resignation. The resignation shall take effect as of the specified resignation date.
- Zone elected Directors may be impeached, but only for behavior and/or actions detrimental to the ideals and purposes of the Society for behavior and/or actions which will reflect discredit on the Society.
- Impeachment proceedings for a Zone elected Director may be begun only by the Board of Directors or by an Affiliate Chapter of that Director’s Zone.
- Impeachment and removal of a Zone elected Director from office requires both a three-quarters vote of the members of the Board of Directors excluding the Director considered for impeachment and a three-quarters vote of the Affiliate Chapter Chairs of the Zone represented by that Director.
- Only academic institutions having one or more Bachelor or Associate Degree Programs accredited by the Technology Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology are eligible to have Affiliate Chapters, within the United States. The Board of Directors may establish equivalent standards for Affiliate Chapters at institutions located outside of the United States.
- Candidate Affiliate Chapters shall formally petition the Board of Directors for a charter. This petition must be accompanied by the by-laws of the local group, a check or money order for the charter fee and the initiation fees of the charter members. The petition should be signed by a minimum of five candidate charter members.
- The Board shall inspect all documentation submitted by each candidate Affiliate Chapter to confirm that both the school and the prospective Affiliate Chapter meet the Society’s standards of curricula and scholarship. The method of inspection shall be left to the discretion of the Board. Having completed this inspection and concluding that a charter should be issued the Board shall authorize the Executive Secretary to issue a charter to the petitioning chapter. The Executive Secretary shall then send a charter to the new Affiliate Chapter, along with membership certificates for the charter members and other paraphernalia.
- The Board of Directors by majority vote may disestablish an Affiliate Chapter if the chapter becomes inactive or if for any reason the Board deems disestablishment advisable for the good of the Society.
Each Affiliate Chapter shall be responsible for its own internal governance, and shall write its own local by-laws, which must be consistent with the Society’s Constitution and By-laws. The Affiliate Chapter By-laws shall be approved by the Board of Directors prior to authorization of that chapter’s petition for a charter and upon any subsequent amendment. The internal affairs of the Affiliate Chapter shall be entirely governed by the Affiliate Chapter by-laws and the Society Constitution and By-laws.
Each Affiliate Chapter shall select a Chapter Chair by a process specified in their by-laws.
- Membership in the Society is extended to those individuals who meet Society standards, are elected as candidate members by the Affiliate Chapter, are approved by the Executive Secretary or the Board of Directors. Membership occurs when the nominee accepts the nomination, pays the initiation fee and is initiated by the Affiliate Chapter. Initial active membership shall be for a period of two years. Members may remain active after that period by remitting dues as specified by the By-laws of the Society.
- To be eligible for membership in Tau Alpha Pi, a student must be regularly enrolled in their Affiliate Chapter institution and must have satisfied the specific minimum requirements for membership as set forth in the by-laws of the Affiliate Chapter to which he/she is being elected.
- The scholastic requirements and standards for membership in Tau Alpha Pi shall be set by each Affiliate Chapter such that each prospective member is academically in the upper twenty five percent of their class.
- Each prospective member must have maintained the required academic standards for a period equivalent to two consecutive school terms (quarters or semesters)for two year programs, and at least three semesters or five quarters for four year programs.
- Candidate members shall be elected by the Affiliate Chapters with due consideration given to the purpose of Tau Alpha Pi; namely, to provide recognition for the highest standard of scholastic achievement and the most outstanding scholastic accomplishments. Each candidate must have acceptable character and demonstrate marked ability. There shall be no discrimination in race, creed, gender or national origin.
- A chapter my elect only one honorary member every year.
- The honorary member must have made significant contributions to the chapter in question as determined by a majority vote of the officers of the chapter.
- To be elected an honorary member, the nominee must have been involved with the chapter or the Engineering Technology community in advising or other capacity for at least one-year before being elected an honorary member.
- Honorary members will not have a vote in society affairs.
- Honorary members will not pay dues unless they want to receive any publications that the society may produce.
- Honorary members will not go through the initiation of the society.
- Honorary members will not nominated by the chapter and approved by the Board.
No less than one month before the scheduled initiation date, the chapter chair shall forward to the Executive Secretary the names, dates of initiation, scholastic biographical data of the candidate members, on a form provided by the Executive Secretary, along with funds covering initiation fees for candidate members. After validating the submission, the Executive Secretary will supply membership certificates and other official paraphernalia for the candidate members in order that this material will be available for the Chapter’s initiation ceremony. If the Executive Secretary declines the submission for membership for any candidate, the chair of that candidate’s Affiliate Chapter may appeal the declination to the Board of Directors whose decision shall be final.
Affiliate Chapters shall hold meetings as provided in their local constitution and by-laws, but at least once per school year.
The Tau Alpha Pi Annual Meeting will be held at the ASEE Annual Conference. Each Affiliate Chapter is encouraged to have participants at this meeting, including an individual designated as that Chapter’s official representative.
The Board of Directors shall meet in person at the Tau Alpha Pi annual meeting and at other meetings called by the President or Executive Secretary or, at its discretion, may conduct business by mail or electronic means.
A National Convention of the Tau Alpha Pi membership may be called by the Board of Directors, provided announcement of the date, time, and place is made at least two months in advance of the scheduled Convention.
Section 1. Scope of the By-Laws
The By-laws of the National Society shall fix the fee for initiation into the National Society, and the charter fee for the installation of new Chapters, and shall govern all other relevant matters, such as assessments, awards, rituals, publications, and candidate member election by Affiliate Chapters.
Section 2. Amendment of the By-Laws
The By-laws of the National Society may be amended by a majority vote by the Board of Directors at any time.
BY-LAWS OF TAU ALPHA PI
BY-LAWS OF TAU ALPHA PI
The Charter fee for installation of a new Affiliate Chapter shall be one-hundred dollars ($100.00).
The initiation fee for an individual member shall be thirty-five dollars ($35.00).
The Board of Directors may bestow awards and other honors on Affiliate Chapters or individuals if the chapters or individuals have performed outstanding service for Engineering Technology, their schools, Affiliate Chapters, or the National Society.
The motto and other ritual of Tau Alpha Pi shall be kept by the Executive Secretary and shall not be made public, but shall be handed down traditionally along with other elements of secrecy. When a new Affiliate Chapter is approved, if it is not feasible to send an installing officer for charter ceremonies, registered mail shall be used for transmitting the ritual and other instructions.
A newsletter and/or internet web site shall be provided to Affiliate Chapters and members for the purpose of keeping them informed on affairs of the Society.
All conventions and meetings of the Society shall be governed by Robert’s Rules of Order.
The colors of the Society shall be green and gold.
The official emblem of the Society shall consist of a pair of spread dividers over a gear, resting on a shield, with the motto on a ribbon unrolled over the center of the shield; the shield shall be green, the gear shall be gold, the dividers and ribbon shall be white. Green and gold plumes shall surround the design.
The key and medallion of the Society shall be patterned after the official emblem.
Other insignia of the Society, such as letterheads, felt emblems for wear on clothing, pennants and jewelry may be authorized by the National Board of Directors.
Each Affiliate Chapter by the process specified in their constitution will annually designate their Membership Selection Committee. This Committee will elect candidate members from the pool of students eligible under Article VII, Section I of the constitution based on the student’s academic record, character and contribution to their institution and community.