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Bylaws

LACSI BYLAWS

ARTICLE I. NAME AND MISSION

SECTION 1.

Name: The name of the Institute shall be the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute, whose acronym shall be LACSI.

SECTION 2.

Mission:
The Latin American and Caribbean region has had major social, cultural, political, and economic impact on the United States. This influence has increased exponentially over the last decade, especially in the state of Georgia. Establishing in-depth understandings of the region and its peoples, including those who have come to the United States from those regions and their descendants, has become crucially important in the state, and the challenge will likely grow in coming decades. LACSI’s primary mission is to address this need by promoting research, education, and service and outreach on Latin America, the Caribbean, and US Latinos. In order to achieve this goal, LACSI shall:

  • Coordinate and administer undergraduate and graduate degree programs in support of and in collaboration with the disciplinary and multidisciplinary interests of LACSI’s faculty;
  • Support and carry out research, education, and service and outreach activities related to LACSI’s mission;
  • Sponsor and provide, within its budgetary limitations, small grants for students and faculty;

ARTICLE II. MEMBERSHIP

LACSI shall consist of the Director, Associate Director, Curriculum Coordinator, Student Advisor/Administrative Associate, Core members, Affiliated members, and Associated members.

SECTION 1:

Core members:
Core faculty comprise tenured, tenure-track, and other faculty whose teaching, research, or service connect in a direct and on-going basis to LACSI’s programs. The Associate Director and Curriculum Coordinator are core members.

SECTION 2:

Affiliated members:
Affiliated members comprise those faculty or other members of the university community who wish to affiliate with LACSI because their teaching, research, or service connect occasionally with LACSI’s programs or who are involved with the administrative, academic, outreach, and other components of LACS.

Membership criteria:
A form will be distributed to persons known to have an interest in LACSI and will be available upon request from LACSI staff and on-line at the LACSI website. Persons interested in applying for one of the categories listed above will be asked to explain the nature of their proposed association with LACSI. Members of the LACSI staff in consultation when necessary with the Executive Committee will review the applications to decide membership based on stated interest and qualifications.

Voting eligibility:

Voting eligible faculty includes all LACSI core members and, in addition, all affiliated members who served in LACSI’s standing committees during the last five years prior to the vote.

ARTICLE III. ADMINISTRATIVE STRUCTURE

The administrative structure of LACSI shall consist of a Director, an Associate Director, a Curriculum Committee (headed by a Curriculum Coordinator), an Office Manager, an Executive Committee, and an Advisory Board.

SECTION 1.

Director:

The Dean of the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences shall appoint the Director upon the recommendation by vote of the Executive Committee. The Director shall serve at the discretion of the Dean, as approved by the Board of Regents. The recommended tenure shall be three years with a possibility for renewal.

The duties of the Director of LACSI shall be to:

  • Act as chief administrative officer for LACSI;
  • Actively pursue and direct grant opportunities;
  • Serve as presiding officer of the Institute’s internal administrative meetings unless another person who has been elected as chair presides at those meetings; Provide the LACSI committees with information on the Institute’s activities, annual calendar, annual progress reports, and of the use of funds allocated for LACSI-sponsored programs;
  • Appoint Standing Committee members and Committee chairs;
  • Coordinate and promote Latin American and Caribbean scholarship at the University of Georgia;
  • Inform faculty, students, and the university community of LACS affairs;
  • Prepare, in collaboration with the Associate Director and Administrative Associate, the LACSI budget and annual report for submission to the Dean of the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences;
  • Represent LACSI at internal and external functions, such as in search committees for faculty positions that may contribute to or affect the overall effectiveness of the Institute;
  • Serve as a liaison with funding agencies and LACS programs at other institutions;
  • Consult with the Dean and Department Heads regarding course offerings, exchange and joint research projects, and study abroad programs;
  • Work closely with the Associate Director, Curriculum Coordinator, and Student Advisor on matters of advising students desiring to earn an undergraduate degree in LACS;
  • In consultation with the Associate Director, Curriculum Coordinator, and Student Advisor, advise students interested in enrolling in LACS-focused and related courses.

Review and Removal of the Director:

Review and removal of the Director shall be made by the Dean in accordance with the policies and procedures of the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences.

The Director shall be reviewed every three years. Except in instances where the incumbent declines to be a candidate for re-appointment, the review shall begin in the Fall Semester of the third year, during which the Dean of Arts and Sciences shall give at least fifteen (15) business days notice of a voting eligible faculty meeting at which the Dean of Arts and Sciences, or his/her designate, shall preside.

The procedure for the review shall be presented to the core faculty by the Dean of Arts and Sciences or the presiding representative.

The Director shall be absent during the open discussion by the faculty assessing the Institute’s leadership needs. A casting of secret ballots to offer or decline support for the Director’s renewal shall follow the discussion.

The voting eligible faculty of LACSI may request that the Dean of Arts and Sciences remove the Director before the expiration of his/ her term. To initiate the process, at least 20% of the voting eligible faculty must convene a faculty meeting to discuss the Director’s performance. At this meeting, reasons for removal of the Director must be specified. Upon a majority vote of no confidence in the Director, the voting eligible faculty will write to the Dean and request that s/he remove the Director no sooner than fifteen (15) days after receipt of the request.

SECTION 2.

Associate Director:

In consultation with The Dean of the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and the Executive Committee, the Director shall appoint the Associate Director.

The duties of the Associate Director of LACSI shall be to:

  • Develop LACSI programmatic activities in coordination with the Director;
  • Oversee the organization and maintenance of the LACSI webpage and LACSI listserv;
  • Develop and submit grant proposals that support LACSI’s mission;
  • In consultation with the Director, develop and oversee LACSI public service and outreach activities;
  • In coordination with the Director, promote LACS scholarship at the University of Georgia and inform faculty, students, and the university community of LACS affairs;
  • Serve as immediate supervisor of student workers carrying out LACSI projects;
  • Handle routine inquiries about the Institute from units within the University System of Georgia and from outside the system;
  • Represent LACSI at internal and external functions that contribute to or affect the overall effectiveness of the Institute;
  • Handle routine inquiries about the Institute from individuals and from units within the University System of Georgia and from outside the system.

SECTION 3.

Curriculum Coordinator:

In consultation with the Dean of the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences and the Executive Committee, the Director of LACSI shall appoint the Curriculum Coordinator.

The duties of the Curriculum Coordinator of LACSI shall be to:

  • Chair the Curriculum Committee and implement changes recommended by that committee;
  • Serve as coordinator of all other curricular activities related to the BA degree in LACS, including the recruitment of UGA Latin Americanist faculty to serve as instructors for the capstone seminar required of all majors;
  • Assist the Director in promoting LACS scholarship at the University of Georgia;
  • Inform faculty, students, and the university community of the LACS undergraduate major;
  • Promote LACS-related study abroad programs as possible and appropriate;
  • Consult with LACSI faculty regarding course offerings, exchange and joint research projects;
  • Assist the Associate Director in handling routine inquiries about the LACS major from units within the University System of Georgia and from outside the system;
  • Assist the Director, Associate Director, Administrative Associate/Student advisor in counseling students interested in pursuing the LACS major and LACS studies abroad programs.

SECTION 4.

Administrative support staff:

In consultation with the Associate Director, the Administrative Associate/Student Advisor, and the Curriculum Coordinator, the Director shall appoint the administrative support staff that includes full- and part-time employees and student workers.

SECTION 5.

The Advisory Board:

The Dean of the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences appoints members of the Advisory Board in consultation with the LACSI Director. The Board shall consist of ten members, each of whom will serve a three-year staggered term with the possibility of renewal. The Board will elect its Chair each year. He or she will schedule meetings as needed and upon request of the members or the Director. Board members will ideally be drawn from a wide range of colleges and schools, reflecting the multidisciplinary composition of UGA Latin Americanist academic community. At least four different colleges or schools must be represented on the Advisory Board. The Board will include five ex-oficio members: the Bibliographer for Latin America and Iberia of the UGA Libraries, a director of a UGA study abroad program in Latin America or the Caribbean, and three non-University members from the greater community. The Director, Associate Director, and Curriculum Coordinator will normally attend Board meetings but the Chair may choose to schedule meetings that staff members do not attend.

The duties of the LACSI Advisory Board shall be to:

  • Meet at least once each academic semester to review activities of the Institute and provide support to the LACSI administrative staff in developing the yearly calendar of activities;
  • Provide counsel to the Director on matters relating to the development of LACSI research, teaching, and outreach programs;
  • Evaluate the distribution of grant money and select recipients of awards.

SECTION 6.

The Executive Committee:

The Executive Committee shall consist of at least twelve members: four elected from the list of core members; two members elected from the list of affiliated members; all budgeted faculty with 50% or more of a joint appointment; two selected by the Dean on recommendation of the Executive Committee to achieve the maximum of interdisciplinary and other forms of balance on the committee; the Curriculum Coordinator; the Associate Director; and the Director, who will serve as chair and will be a voting member of the committee. The elected and appointed members of the Executive Committee will serve three-year staggered terms with the possibility of renewal, if reelected or reappointed. The three-year cycle of staggered rotation for elected and appointed members will follow a 3-3-0 pattern (two consecutive years of rotation, followed by one year of no rotation). All core and affiliate members will be eligible to vote for representatives in their category of membership.

The duties of the LACSI Executive Committee shall be to:

  • Vote on hiring decisions, upon recommendation of appropriate search committees;
  • Advise the Director on matters of budget and personnel;
  • Establish committees as needed;
  • Serve as an appeals committee for grades or other matters;
  • Make decisions about LACS program and curriculum development upon recommendation of the Curriculum Committee.

Other Committees:

  • The Curriculum Committee will be appointed by the Director in consultation with the Associate Director, the Curriculum Coordinator, and the Executive Committee. The Curriculum committee will propose changes to the curriculum, propose new programs, monitor and review existing programs, and take general responsibility for managing the curriculum. It will comprise three core members, one affiliated member, the Associate Director, the Curriculum Coordinator, and the LACSI Advisor, all of whom will be voting members.
  • The search committee for joint faculty positions and for the search for the position of Director will be appointed by the Dean upon recommendation from the Director and the Advisory Board and Executive Committees. That committee will screen candidates, select finalists, conduct interviews, and host on-campus finalists. The Search Committee’s recommendations will be brought to the Executive Committee, which will vote on the acceptability of the candidates and express preferences. The results of the Executive Committee’s deliberations will be conveyed to the Dean.
  • The Ethnobotanical Garden Committee will provide guidance to LACSI concerning the research, teaching, and service mission of the garden and will provide advice regarding relevant budgetary decisions.

ARTICLE VI. AMENDMENTS TO THE BYLAWS

Changes to LACSI By-laws must be approved by the Executive Committee and finalized by a majority vote of the voting faculty by electronic ballot.

These bylaws were approved by the Executive Committee on March 16, 2016, and by a vote of the Core Faculty on March 30, 2016.

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