• The Caribbean Students Organization

    Midwestern State University - Wichita Falls, TX

CSO History

Dr. Randy Glean officially launched the Caribbean Recruitment program in the spring of 1993. After the experimental admission of four students from Grenada, Dr. Jesse Rogers established a platform to allow him to recruit more students. Visits to Antigua, Dominica, Grenada, and St. Vincent in the summer of 1993, yielded eight students in fall 1993 and an additional six in spring 1994.

In January 1994, the Caribbean Students Organization was formed (CSO) by the 18 students enrolled at that time. The program was predicated on the simple proposition that these excellent students would be given the opportunity to pay in-state tuition provided they maintained a pre-determined academic level. This was accomplished by the provision of competitive waivers and partial tuition scholarships. In addition, the current students agreed to provide basic adjustment services and assistance to students who arrived in the ensuing semesters. With the combination of these factors, the stage was set for the growth of the program. In the late spring of 1995, a change in state law threatened to derail the entire competitive waiver option and almost put an end to the program.

In response, Dr. Glean established partnerships with various organizations and governments and secured funding and a structured platform that allowed the program to continue. As of January 2009, almost 1000 students have been recruited, and almost 250 Caribbean Students are currently registered through this program. This has led to a stellar enhancement of the university's reputation as an international entity, and over 40 countries are currently represented among its student population.

CSO has been instrumental in creating an international housing program at Colony Park, and in leading the charge for the internationalization of the campus. Students from Africa, India, Sri Lanka and Nepal have all benefited from the CSO initiative and many other universities have begun to emulate the MSU model for developing a first rate international program. After 15 years of growth, Caribbean Students continue to graduate at an unprecedented 95% rate on time, with more than 60% achieving honors and over 70% going on to earn advanced degrees.

Executives 2014-2015

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DONNA-LISA NELSON President

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LANCE HENRY 1ST Vice President

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MICHELLE GONSALVES BARREIRO 2ND Vice President
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IMAN MENDES SECRETARY 1

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RHEA SPENCER SECRETARY 2

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FOSTINA CHARLERY TREASURER 1

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YASHANA PETERS TREASURER 2

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MARK FREEMANTLE HISTORIAN

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SUPRENA POLEON SENATOR

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YVONNE ALBERT PUBLIC RELATIONS OFFICER

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ALICIA GAY PARLIAMENTARIAN

Constitution

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE CARIBBEAN STUDENTS ORGANIZATION JANUARY 17, 1994

The CARIBBEAN STUDENTS ORGANIZATION is hereby established on January 17, 1994, on the day of recognition of the birth of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with the following purposes:

  1. to foster a closer understanding between persons of Caribbean and American cultures.
  2. to facilitate the transition of new students from the Caribbean.
  3. to bring about a cultural and academic exchange between persons of Caribbean and African-American backgrounds.
  4. to promote academic excellence among members.
  5. to provide a social outlet for members.
  6. to assist in the recruitment of prospective students from the Caribean.
  7. to create Caribbean cultural, social, political and historical awareness.
  8. to engage in activities geared towards positive campus citizenship.
  9. to interact with the Wichita Falls community for cultural exchange.
  10. to assist in academic tutelage in the campus and Wichita Falls communities.

We hold these purposes to be consistent with the spirit of our origins and foundations both as an organization and a people. We aspire towards complete fulfillment of these fundamental principles with the diligent and enthusiastic participation of all our members.

Preamble to the constitution

In recognition of the principles of cohesiveness, excellence, service to our fellow man, and the spirit of world community, Caribbean unity and solidarity among people with a common purpose, we hereby establish this constitution for the Caribbean Students Organization.

CONSTITUTION OF THE CARIBBEAN STUDENTS ORGANIZATION OF MIDWESTERN STATE UNIVERSITY

Article I NAME The organization shall be named CARIBBEAN STUDENTS ORGANIZATION, and shall hereinafter be referred to as CSO, which shall also be the official acronym.

Article II MEMBERS Membership shall be open to all students of Midwestern State University, full or part-time, faculty, or staff member, with an interest in the Caribbean, Caribbean culture, or Caribbean affairs.

Article III HONORARY MEMBERS The executive may nominate two persons per year as Honorary Members, who shall enjoy the benefits of regular members, but shall not be subject to dues or attendance requirements and shall retain that status for no more than one year after appointment. Honorary membership may be renewed indefinitely. Said nominations will be subject to ratification in the same manner as all executive decisions.

Article IV ACTIVE MEMBER An active member must:

  1. be in good financial standing
  2. actively participate in organization activities
  3. not miss more than two consecutive meetings without executive permission

Good standing will be reviewed by the executive. Absences are subjected to review by the executive.

Article V OFFICERS The CSO shall elect a president, 1st vice-president, 2nd vice-president, secretary, assistant secretary, treasurer, assistant treasurer, public relations officer (P.R.O.), parliamentarian and historian.

Article VI STANDING COMMITTEES The president shall appoint a minimum of eight (8) members to the following standing committees: Cultural Awareness, Fund-raising, Newsletter, Personal/Professional development, Sports and Games, Web Team, Housing Committee, and Social Activity.

Article VII AD HOC COMMITTEES The president shall appoint members to ad hoc committees. Such committees shall be created for specific purposes and dissolved upon the completion of the specific tasks. The president shall require Ad Hoc committees to produce progress reports to the general body as deemed necessary and may dissolve and replace such committees for due cause.

Article VIII STUDENT AFFAIRS COMMITTEE The student affairs committee shall include only those students who have entered MSU from the Caribbean. Others may be added to this committee upon assent of 3/4 of the total number of members otherwise eligible to be on the committee.

Article IX MEETINGS The CSO shall meet at least once per month at a place to be designated and a time to be established at the previous meeting. The STUDENT AFFAIRS COMMITTEE shall meet at such times convened by the executive. The EXECUTIVE shall meet between general CSO meetings and whenever else deemed necessary.

Article X ADVISERS The CSO shall nominate an adviser(s) who must be faculty or staff members of MSU. Adviser(s) shall be nominated by a simple majority vote of a quorum.

Article XI EXECUTIVE The executive shall be comprised of all elected officers, an adviser(s) and all past presidents. However, voting privileges shall be limited to elected officers and the immediate past president.

Article XII QUORUM For the purpose of a general meeting a quorum shall be 50% of all active members. For the purpose of elections a quorum shall be 2/3 of all active members. For the purpose of a student affairs committee meeting a quorum shall be 3/4 of all active members.

For the purpose of an executive meeting a quorum shall be seven (7) voting members.

Article XIII ELIGIBILITY FOR OFFICES Section A: The president must: be a student in good academic standing; be a member of the student affairs committee; be at least a sophomore; be an active member; not be eligible for graduation prior to May of the year in which his/her term shall expire. have been a student at MSU for at least one calendar year prior to elections.

Section B: The 1st vice-president must: meet all of the requirements for president except item (6).

Section C: The 2nd vice-president must: meet all of the requirements for 1st vice-president except item (2)

Section D: The secretary and assistant secretary must: meet all of the requirements noted for the 2nd vice-president except items (3) and (5).

Section E: The treasurer and assistant treasurer must: meet all of the requirements noted for the 2nd vice-president except items (3) and (5).

Section F: The P.R.O., parliamentarian and historian must: meet all of the requirements for 2nd vice-president except items (3) and (5). However, the historian must meet item (2).

Section G: No person shall be eligible for office during his/her first semester of enrollment at MSU.

Article XIV FUNCTION OF OFFICERS Section A: The president shall: appoint all committees; preside at executive, general and student affairs committee meetings; represent or designate a representative of CSO for school or other functions; appoint an elections officer; appoint student senate representatives; appoint replacement officers in case of resignation or removal of an incumbent.

Section B: The 1st vice-president shall: assume the duties of president at meetings in the absence of the president; accede to the presidency upon removal or resignation of the president; serve as ex-officio on all standing committees.

Section C: The 2nd vice-president shall: preside over a meeting in the absence of the president and 1st vice-president; serve as ex-officio on all ad hoc committees.

Section D:

The secretary shall: record minutes; handle correspondence to and from CSO; maintain a list of members active and inactive; keep attendance. The secretary shall function at general and executive meetings, but not at student affairs committee meetings.

Section E: The assistant secretary shall: assist the secretary in the performance of his/her duties as stated above.

Section F: The treasurer shall: keep records of all financial matters; collect all dues and fines; be aware of all financial transactions; be a signatory to the checking account; be accountable to the CSO for all funds handled; prepare a monthly financial statement.

Section G: The assistant treasurer shall: assist the treasurer in the performance of his/her duties as stated above, be a member of the fund-raising committee.

Section H: The public relations officer (P.R.O.) shall: promote the CSO on campus, in the local community, and throughout the Caribbean; publicize all CSO events; liaise with other organizations when designated to do so by the executive; chair the newsletter committee.

Section I: The parliamentarian shall: keep order in meetings; determine the constitutionality of procedures and proceedings; advise the chair on proper procedures when called upon to do so.

Section J: The historian shall: function as the secretary of the student affairs committee; keep confidential all recorded proceedings and correspondence relevant only to the student affairs committee; keep all records of achievement of members, the group, significant events, scrapbook, photos and memorabilia.

Article XV FUNCTION OF STANDING COMMITTEES All committees must submit proposals which upon executive approval, shall be presented to the general body.

Section A: The Cultural Awareness Committee shall: plan and organize necessary events to highlight Caribbean culture and promote cultural awareness and Caribbean unity among members.

Section B: The Fund-raising Committee shall: plan and organize such activities for the purpose of raising funds for CSO's projects.'

Section C: The Newsletter Committee shall: assist in the promotion of CSO events on campus and in the community, gather and organize material, and produce newsletters periodically.

Section D: The personal/professional Development Committee shall: seek out people and organizations in the Wichita Falls community for the purpose of the personal development of individuals and the CSO.

Section E: The Social Activity Committee shall: plan and organize social activities; initiate activities; coordinate CSO participation in activities.

Section F: The Sports and Games Committee shall: plan and organize sporting activities; initiate activities; coordinate CSO participation in intramural activities.

Section G: The Web Team shall coordinate all electronic resources, maintain a web page, maintain an active mailing list, and keep the executive abreast of technological advances pertinent to the organization's mission.

Section H: The Housing Committee shall coordinate apartment housing for the organization; shall determine eligibility for housing benefits; shall coordinate with the adviser on housing preparations for new students; shall make necessary efforts to assist members in formulating households.

Article XVI EXECUTIVE MEETINGS All executive decisions must be passed by a simple majority of a quorum. All decisions passed by the executive shall be implemented only after it is ratified by a majority of a quorum of the general body at the ensuing meeting.

Article XVII GENERAL MEETINGS Section A: The parliamentarian shall call the meeting to order, and request a member for prayer. The chair shall submit an agenda in an ordered priority. Minutes must contain: an attendance record; list of main points discussed; motions; summary of financial report; other items deemed necessary by the secretary. Treasurer's report must contain: previous balance of: administrative funds charity funds operations funds; financial activities since last report in each account; current balance; membership dues owing and paid; financial report on specific activities, if any.

Section B: Parliamentary order must be maintained unless the chair dissolves the meeting into a committee of the whole house for a specific discussion. Thereafter, parliamentary order must be restored.

A motion is carried by a majority vote. The chair may limit discussion and call an issue to a vote. Meetings shall not exceed a reasonable time limit. The meeting shall end with a prayer by a member requested by the chair.

Article XVIII FINANCIAL The executive shall: determine membership dues; set time limits and method of payment; devise sanctions for non-payment. All processes established and changed must be ratified by the general body. Social events of CSO must be paid through administrative funds. Stationery supplies and administrative cost must be paid through administrative funds. Operations funds are funds given to CSO for the purpose of recruiting or settlement of incoming students by either the students or another source. Rent, household supplies and advance fees must be paid from either operations or administrative

funds. Charity funds are funds collected at fund-raising events. Other than capital investments and reimbursements clearly noted, charity funds must only be used for the funding of charitable events. A checking account shall be established with the president, 1st vice-president, and treasurer as signatories. Two persons must sign all checks. All expenditures must be approved by the executive.

Article XIX PURPOSE OF STUDENT AFFAIRS COMMITTEE Section A: The student affairs committee provides an outlet for students to freely discuss any Concerns, settle disputes, and interact in a socially uninhibited manner.

Section B: All discussions at this meeting must be completely confidential and restricted only to members of the committee. Advisers need not be present at student affairs committee meetings. Honorary members are not eligible to become student affairs committee members. Decisions made at student affairs committee meetings are still subject to constitutional procedures for implementation of decisions.

Article XX STUDENT AFFAIRS COMMITTEE MEETINGS Section A: Upon presentation of a written petition signed by at least twenty (20) percent of committee members, the president shall convene a meeting of the student affairs committee within one week of receipt of such a petition. The time and place will be designated as convenient to invoke a quorum.

Section B: Only the president, 1 st vice-president, or treasurer may preside at student affairs committee meetings.

Section C: The historian shall keep separate records of student affairs committee meetings. Such records shall be confidential and limited to only committee members.

Article XXI DISCIPLINE AND DISCIPLINARY MEASURES Section A: Respect and dignity of all members being essential components of our charter, verbal, physical, sexual or mental abuse, religious, or racial discrimination by or among members will not be tolerated. The executive shall discipline a member for violations of the spirit of confidentiality of committee discussions, or other protocol of the organization. Such sanction may be subject to the rules and protocols governing Midwestern State University organizations.

Section B: A violation will be deemed to have occurred when a simple majority of the members in a meeting have so determined.

Section C: An officer may be removed from office upon impeachment by a 2/3 vote of the general body—which shall also include a majority vote of the total number of executive members. Grounds for impeachment and removal shall be limited to gross misconduct, abuse of office, or academic ineligibility.

Article XXII CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS

Amendments to this constitution must be submitted in writing to the executive who will present the amendment to the general body. The amendment will be subject to review and debate by the general body. The general body will then vote and by a 2/3 majority of eligible members establish the amendment.

Article XXIII BY-LAWS By-laws may be proposed by the same method as constitutional amendments, however a simple majority shall establish a by-law. However, no by-law shall be in conflict with the constitution. Once established, by-laws shall be dated and signed by the president and secretary and attached to the constitution.

Article XXIV MISCELLANEOUS Section A: Amendments and By-laws shall be Numbered. Section B: An officer and committee members must resign by submitting a letter of resignation stating reasons to the executive. Section C: The chair shall cast the deciding vote in all deadlocks. However, the chair does retain an original vote. Section D: No individual, who is not an active member in accordance with Article IV, shall vote or stand for any office.

Article XXV RATIFICATION OF THIS CONSTITUTION Section A: The constitution, if ratified, will be in force as of January 17, 1994,which date shall be determined as the official launching date of CSO, when a simple majority of a quorum shall vote to ratify.

Section B: No business shall be conducted in an unconstitutional manner except in time of extreme emergency, and only with the consent of the president and or current adviser(s). Such business and the nature of the emergency must be made known to the general body at the next scheduled meeting.

Section C: The rules contained herein shall not be construed to affect the tenure of current officers or nullify current operating procedures and decisions. All constitutional rules, however, must be applied henceforth with regards to any business or elections.

The original Constitution submitted respectfully to the CSO by a founding member of the organization, January 11, 1994.