Constitution of the Columbia/Barnard Association for Women in Mathematics



The Columbia University Chapter of the Association for Women in Mathematics is a pre-professional society for students and professors whose mission is to encourage womxn and gender minorities to study and to have active careers in the mathematical sciences and to promote equal opportunity for and the equal treatment of womxn and gender minorities in the mathematical sciences. 


Article I. Name of Club


The name of the club shall be the Columbia University Chapter of the Association for Women in Mathematics, hereinafter referred to as the Columbia Association for Women in Mathematics or AWM.


Article II. Membership


Section 1. Eligibility 

Membership shall be granted to any students affiliated with Columbia University who wish to join the organization. The club will not discriminate against individuals based on race, ethnicity, color, sex, or gender (including gender identity and expression), pregnancy, religion, creed, marital status, partnership status, age, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, veteran’s status, academic major, or any other legally protected status. 


Section 2. Code of Conduct 

AWM will ensure that our club is a safe, welcoming, and comfortable space for all members, regardless of personal identity or background as mentioned in Article II Section 1. As members of AWM, we commit to upholding these values of support and respect in interacting with other AWM members and students of the Columbia community. Should a complaint be raised, the board will act as a resource to connect members with options to assist them with your problems including but not limited to confidential (Sexual Violence Response, Counseling and Psychological Services, Student Health Services, Spiritual counseling, etc.) and non-confidential (Public Safety, Student Life advisor, ABC, GBB, etc.) resources. 

Any AWM member who violates the aforementioned code of conduct will be asked by the board to leave the organization and will be asked to refrain from attending future AWM events. 


Section 3. Dues

There will be no Membership dues for joining AWM. 


Section 4. Active Membership

In order to be recognized as a member-in-good-standing of the Association for Women in Mathematics, a member must attend three or more meetings or events per semester and be a student enrolled at Columbia University and its affiliate schools.


Section 5. Rights of Active Members

The rights and privileges to which a member-in-good-standing is entitled are: respect, understanding, and cooperation from leaders and peers; the opportunity to run for a board position; the opportunity to petition ideas and amendment suggestions to the board; and the opportunity to attend all lectures and events sponsored by the Association for Women in Mathematics.


Article III. Governance


The AWM board will consist of four executive members and appointed chairs or co-chairs of the three committees.


Section 1. Executive Board Duties of Office

  • President: Serves as the primary communicator with Barnard/Columbia campus administration and with the national AWM organization. Addresses any concerns from chapter members or community members regarding our organization. Schedules and creates agendas and task lists for meetings, oversees logistics for board meetings and events, ensures that board members are carrying out their assigned tasks and responsibilities, initiates communication with other student organizations for collaborations and with external organizations or speakers for events. Time commitment varies - a minimum of four hours/week. 

  • Vice President: Serves as assistant to the President and assumes the President's responsibilities (see above) when they are unable to be present. Assists the Board with miscellaneous tasks, including, but not limited to, drafting emails, posting on Facebook, setting up and cleaning up events, and more. Time commitment varies - a minimum of two hours/week. 

  • Secretary: Records meeting minutes at weekly board meetings. Organizes paperwork relating to chapter logistics and programs. Maintains regular communications between the chapter board and the general body members, such as weekly newsletters about upcoming events. Time commitment varies - a minimum of three hours/week. 

  • Treasurer: Communicates with the Math Department and with ABC regarding our chapter finances and budget needs. Requests funding for events at least two weeks in advance. Time commitment varies - a minimum of one and a half hours/week. 

Section 2. Committees

  1. Events Chair(s):  Helps brainstorm ideas for events and helps to secure speakers for some events. Manages the AWM list-serv and email account, and maintain consistent social media presence on Facebook. Creates publicity materials to support events, including but not limited to, flyers, posters, memes, and social media posts. Reserves event spaces, organizes and manages events, and executes any emerging administrative work for the group events.

  2. Outreach Chair(s): Helps brainstorm ideas for events and distributes flyers for events. Coordinates with campus and external organizations and parties to host events, including coordination with the other chairs. Helps to secure speakers for some events. Manages any other publicity for events.

  3. Mentoring Chair(s): Facilitates and publicizes the mentorship program in which undergraduate students are paired with women graduate students, post-docs, or faculty. Organizes and manages active study spaces for students including, but not limited to, the weekly help room for Supper & Solve. 


Section 3. Term of Office 

The term of office of each board member will be one year, starting from mid-April at the end of the academic year and ending with elections in early April. If the board needs to take any action over the summer, the board members are those who were elected in the spring. 

If any board member is removed from office during the typical term, then emergency applications and interviews will be held.


Article IV. Meetings


Section 1. Executive Board

The Board will meet on a weekly basis throughout the academic year. If there is an emergency or when an urgent matter needs to be discussed, the President can call an emergency meeting for all members of the Board and committees.


Section 2. Meetings and Events

All weekly AWM board meetings will be open to, but not required of, committee members. Food will always be provided at events. Events will provide an opportunity for members to get to know each other. They are open to any person who wishes to attend, regardless of status of membership.


Article V. Formation of the Board


Section 1. Eligibility 

All active committee members and board members are eligible to run for one or more of the four e-board positions and are eligible to vote, regardless of major/degree or gender. All active committee members are eligible to be appointed to a committee chair or co-chair position. 


Section 2. Elections

All members who plan to exercise their eligibility to run and/or to vote (as detailed in Article V Section 2) must be present for the full duration of the hour-long election period. All candidates may run for up to four of the four e-board positions. All candidates will be given sixty seconds each to deliver an election speech. Voting will be conducted on paper ballots and tallied in person, with results reported in real time. Positions will be filled in descending order: President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. Candidates who are not voted into a position are encouraged to run again for other position(s). For example, a candidate who is not chosen for President is then eligible to run for Vice President, and so on. 


Section 3. Appointments

Within two weeks of being elected, the e-board will appoint willing committee members to assume chair or co-chair responsibilities for each of the three committees. 


Article VI. Amendments


Section 1. Procedure for Amendment 

Should any AWM member desire an amendment to the Constitution, then a formal proposal must be made and submitted to the Board. The formal amendment should indicate which part of the Constitution is to be amended and why. 


Section 2. Ratification

A proposed amendment will be reviewed by the Board. The Board will discuss and revise the Constitution. An amendment will be adopted by a unanimous vote by the Board. The timeline for the ratification process will allow the Board two week to discuss and revise the amendment. At the end of the two-week period, the President will call a meeting of the Board in order to vote to adopt or reject the amendment. Constitution must be amended at least 2 weeks before the elections at the end of the year.  If the date of the submission of the amendment is later than 2 two weeks before the election, the constitution is set and cannot be revised until the new Board meets and discusses additional amendments for the new school year. 


Article VII. Dismissal of Board Members


Section 1: Resignation

The resignation process for all board positions will be the same and as follows: notice must be given to all other members of the AWM board four full weeks prior to their resignation. The resigning board member is responsible for finding and training a suitable and qualified replacement, with the approval of the board. 


Section 2: Removal from the Board

A board member will be prematurely removed from their position if all of the other board members unanimously feel that they are not fulfilling the responsibilities and tasks required by their position, as listed in Article III Sections 1 and 2. 

A board member will be prematurely removed from their position and from AWM if they do not act in accordance with the Code of Conduct, as outlined in Article II Section 2. 

After a board member is removed, then an emergency application and interview process will begin immediately to replace that board member. 


Article VIII. Events and Programs


Section 1: Events

Club events will benefit the Columbia community as a whole. These events will include, but are not limited to, lecture series, industry talks, academic planning panels, study breaks, wellness events, and more. There will be a minimum of five events per semester, including weekly Supper and Solve events. 


Section 2. Approving Expenditures 

Expenditures pertaining to providing food for events, distributing free club merchandise, and other necessary items will be authorized by a majority vote of the board members. 

In the last month of the academic year, the board will use the remaining ABC funds for a community bonding event.


Article X. Affiliation with the national Association for Women in Mathematics


Section 1. Institutional Affiliation

The Barnard and Columbia Chapter of the AWM is affiliated with the national AWM organization. Each year, our chapter will pay for institutional membership, which typically costs between $200 and $325. 


Section 2. Individual Affiliation

Certain categories of institutional membership will include 15 free student AWM memberships. If, in any given year, 15 or fewer club members want to be members of the national institution, memberships will go to all students who wish to be members. If more than 15 club members want to join, the memberships will first be given to the board members and then to active committee members.