Senate of the Urbana-Champaign Campus

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Senate Election Rules for the Student Electorate

As amended through December 10, 2018
Downloadable version of the Election Rules for the Student Electorate


  1. Delgation of Power
  2. Apportionment and Voting Units
  3. Eligibility
  4. General Election Provisions
  5. Conducting Elections
  6. Certification of Election Results
  7. Grievances and Appeals
  8. Resignations and Vacancies

1. Delegation of Power

1.1 The Senate Committee on Elections and Credentials (EC) may delegate to the college, Campus Student Election Commission (CSEC), or Senate Clerk various duties by way of the Election Rules.

1.2 Restriction of Power. All activities of the EC and college committees or CSEC shall conform to the relevant provisions of the Constitution and Bylaws adopted by the Senate. The Urbana-Champaign Senate has ultimate jurisdiction in the election of its senators.

1.3 Resolution of Conflicts. Any conflicts concerning election rules and procedures which may arise whenever the CSEC is authorized to conduct student Senate elections shall be resolved by joint consultation between the CSEC and the EC.

2. Apportionment and Voting Units

2.1 The EC, in consultation with the Senate Clerk and upon approval of the full Senate, will determine the number of student senators to be apportioned to each college voting unit based on the most recent tenth-day enrollment figures of college membership. The total number of student senators shall be as close to fifty as possible.

2.2 Prior to determining the apportionment plan or amendments thereto, the EC shall seek the advice of the current student senators of the Urbana-Champaign Senate.

2.3 Voting Units. Student voting units shall be determined in the following manner:

a. Structure. The EC, with appropriate consultation, shall create voting units by dividing each college into some number of voting units (greater than or equal to one), and for each voting unit, some number (greater than or equal to one) of the senators apportioned to the college shall be assigned to be elected by that unit. Any senators apportioned to the college but not assigned to any unit shall be elected from the college at large. The following is a list of examples of how a college might be organized into voting units. A college might be:

i. Treated as a single unit with all of its senators elected from the college at large;

ii. Divided into as many voting units as senators to be elected;

iii. Divided into some units that elect one senator and some that elect more than one;

iv. Divided into units that each elects more than one senator; or

v. Divided into units that elect some senators apportioned to the college and with other senators elected from the college at large.

b. Size Limitation. Not more than five senators may be elected from one voting unit unless that voting unit elects all its senators at-large.

c. Departments Remain Intact. Each voting unit must be made up of one or more full departments. Departments may not be split.

d. Related Subject-Matter Guideline. Each voting unit should consist of departments in areas of related subject matter.

e. Equal Size College Voting Units. Each single-senator voting unit within a college should have a student population substantially equal to other single-senator voting units. When multiple senator voting units are used, the ratio of population to senators should be substantially equal for all voting units.

2.4 Once the apportionment plan and voting unit structure are determined, they shall remain in effect until otherwise determined by the EC and approved by the full Senate. The apportionment plan and voting unit structure shall be reviewed annually by the EC.

2.5 Absentees Counted. Members of the student electorate absent from campus will be included in the statistics used to apportion seats.

3. Eligibility

3.1 Written Nomination Statement. A student wishing to be a candidate must submit a nomination statement. The nomination statement must be submitted according to the instructions provided by the body conducting the elections.

3.2 Information Session. Completion of an information session informing candidates of the nomination and election process, and of the associated responsibilities as a senator is required.

3.3 Certification of Eligibility. The appropriate dean must certify the student’s eligibility for candidacy and voting unit.

3.4 At the time of nomination and election, a student candidate must have a 2.5 minimum cumulative institutional GPA, and be making satisfactory progress toward a degree as certified by their academic dean. "Satisfactory progress" means that the candidate is not on academic probation or drop status, and is fulfilling the requirements of a degree program within the voting unit. No additional or different standard may be employed.

3.5 A student candidate must satisfy the requirements of membership in the student electorate and intend to remain a student in residence during their expected term of office as stated in the Constitution Article IV – Student Representation.

4. General Election Provisions

4.1 Current Membership in a Voting Unit. No person may be a candidate for a seat in a voting unit if not enrolled in that voting unit at the time of submission of the nomination statement.

4.2 Single-Seat Limitation. No person can be a candidate for more than one Senate seat.

5. Conducting Elections

5.1 Duration of Elections. The elections shall be held on two consecutive weekdays.

5.2 Time of Elections. Elections for the Colleges of Law, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine shall be conducted by those colleges at such times as shall be specified by the EC. The election of all other student senators shall be held at such times as shall be specified by the EC unless the Senate authorizes the Campus Student Elections Commission (CSEC) established by the Illinois Student Government Constitution to conduct the election of student senators concurrently with the other student elections the CSEC conducts. Such authorization, which does not extend to the Colleges of Law, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine, must be given by the Senate no later than the last regularly scheduled meeting of the spring semester for the following year's elections. Once given, this authorization will remain in force unless it is rescinded by the Senate; such action must take place no later than the last regularly scheduled meeting of the spring semester to be effective for the following year's elections. If the CSEC is authorized to conduct student Senate elections and agrees to do so, the election shall be held in the week containing the first Monday in March. If this week contains a general campus holiday, the election shall be held in the preceding week. If the preceding week also contains a general University holiday, the election shall be held in the week containing the second Monday in March.

5.3 Senate Approval of Changes in CSEC Election Calendar. If for any reason CSEC-conducted Senate elections cannot be held in accordance with the above schedule, the CSEC will notify the Senate no later than September 30 prior to the scheduled election, at which time the Senate shall determine whether to authorize the CSEC to proceed with the conduct of said election or to delegate the responsibility to the college elections committees.

5.4 Ties. Ties shall be resolved by a coin flip or drawing of lots by the body conducting the election.

5.5 Notification of Winners. The body conducting the elections is responsible for notifying the winning candidates as soon as possible after the certification of election results.

6. Certification of Election Results

6.1 Certification by the Body Conducting the Election

a. College Committee. If the elections have been conducted by the college elections committees, the results shall be submitted to the appropriate college committee. The college committee, after reviewing the results for accuracy, shall submit the results to the EC through the Senate Clerk. The college committee shall arrange for the preservation of all election materials for that academic year.

b. CSEC. If the elections have been conducted by the CSEC, the CSEC, after reviewing the results for accuracy, shall certify and submit the results to the EC through the Senate Clerk. The CSEC shall arrange for the preservation of all election materials for that academic year.

6.2 Certification by Senate Committee. The EC shall certify election results to the Senate at the organizational meeting of the newly elected Senate. These results shall be entered in the minutes of that meeting. The EC may delay certification of candidates whose elections are in doubt until a resolution is determined.

7. Grievances and Appeals

7.1 For any election conducted by the CSEC, students may file complaints in accordance with procedures specified in the CSEC election guidelines as published.

7.2 Any aggrieved person may appeal a decision of a college committee to the EC, and actions and decisions of the EC may be appealed to the Senate through the Senate Clerk.

8. Resignations and Vacancies

8.1 If no one is elected to a Senate seat from a voting unit during the general election, then the college in which that voting unit resides shall have the option of electing an eligible member of the student electorate to that seat in the fall. Election procedures shall be developed by each college elections and credentials committee and shall be subject to approval by the EC.

8.2 Vacancies. A vacant student Senate seat may be filled by appointment by the Illinois Student Government. In selecting the replacement for a student senator, priority should be given, in descending order, to:

a. The first runner-up (if any) in the appropriate voting unit.

b. The successive runners-up (if any) in the appropriate voting unit.

c. Candidate(s) selected in a search conducted by the Illinois Student Government’s Standing Committee on Internal Affairs in consultation with the Clerk of the Senate. In the case of graduate student vacancies, the Committee on Internal Affairs must seek the advice and consent of the Subcommittee on Graduate and Professional Student Affairs or of the EC, when the former has not been constituted.

8.3 Disqualification from Electorate. If a senator fails to satisfy the requirements for membership in the electorate during their term of office, the EC shall determine whether the senator may remain seated.

8.4 Change of Voting Unit. If a senator changes voting units after the election, the senator will continue to represent the original voting unit unless the EC determines otherwise.