Hints for Writing a Constitution

What is a Constitution?

A constitution is a written document that incorporates the organization's mission, principles, and rules.  It also defines the way the organization will be governed.  It ensures fairness and information to its membership.  A constitution should contain statements regarding the enduring aspects of the organization.

Using the Outline of a Sample Constitution

Not all of the sections shown may pertain to your organization, and thus can be eliminated.  Other aspects of your organization may not be covered in the examples provided and you may have to substitute them or add different sections.

Important Items to Remember

  • While you may know how "things go" in your organization right now, you will not always be a part of it.  Create your constitution so future leaders can maintain the dynamic, successful organization you envision.  
  •  Try not to be so vague when writing/revising your constitution that future members of your organization are unable to reference it when issues arise or decisions need to be made (ex: "Other officers will be elected as needed or wanted").
  • Also, try not to be so specific when writing your constitution that your organization is not allowed any flexibility to account for changing membership.  (Ex: "Meetings will be held every Thursday at 9 p.m. in Skutt Student Center 105").
  • Don't make assumptions that your group will not need or use something in the future just because you do not presently.  (Ex: "This organization will not have a budget.")  Leave your group options.

Getting Help

As you begin to develop or revise your constitution, the Student Leadership & Involvement Center strongly encourages you to meet with the Assistant Director, who works with student organizations, to discuss the specific items you would like to have included in your constitution.  Going over this while you are working on it may save you from not having it approved by the Student Leadership & Involvement Center.  Sometimes looking at another group's constitution can be helpful in preparation for writing your own. 

 

If you have any questions, would like to meet with someone to talk about your organization's constitution, or would like to review a sample constitution, please feel free to stop by the Student Leadership & Involvement Center located in Skutt Student Center 120, email clubs@creighton.edu,or call 280-1715.