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 In Touch Spring Fall 2015

Alumni Council Position Descriptions

Want to join the Mohawk College Alumni Council?

The primary responsibilities/duties of a Mohawk College Alumni Association Council (MCAAC) Director Member is:

Interested in joining? Please email us today!

See full position descriptions below:


1. General Responsibilities

The Chair of the Mohawk College Alumni Association Council (MCAAC) upholds the MCAAC Mission, Vision and Values, Advisory Guidelines, Belief Statement, Terms of Reference and Charter.
The Chair of the MAAC is responsible for facilitating highly effective Council performance.
The Chair is not an executive of MCAAC in the sense that the Chair is not responsible for the operational management. In discharging his/her responsibility, the Chair:
a) provides leadership to the Council on specific issues;
b) is responsive to the ongoing needs of Council;
c) in accordance with the direction of the Council, acts as the spokesperson for the Council;
d) at the request of the Council and/or the Director, Alumni Relations, acts as an intermediary between the Council and the Director;
e) at the request of the Council and/or the Director, provide supports to the Director;
f) in collaboration with the Director, Alumni Relations, acts as a spokesperson for the MCAAC; and
g) performs all other responsibilities and commitments outlined in the MCAA Council Director Position Description.
In the absence of the Chair, the Vice Chair acts as Interim Chair.
2. Specific Responsibilities of the Chair
The Chair sets a high standard for Council conduct by modeling, articulating and enforcing standards of conduct and performance found in MCAAC Advisory Guidelines, Terms of Reference, Belief Statement, and Charter.
Without limiting the general responsibilities of the Chair described in Section 1 above, the Chair:
a. Pre-Council Meeting Mechanics

i. Schedules the number and timing of Council and Committee meetings each year so as to enable the Council to deal on a timely basis with all matters for which the Council is responsible and with which the Council as a whole chooses or is obliged to deal;

ii. Polls Council Members at least 10 days in advance of each meeting and seek their input as to possible agenda items;

iii. After consulting with the Director and the Executive Committee, establishes the agenda for each Council meeting with a view to bringing before the Council (i) matters with which the Council wishes or is obliged to deal, (ii) matters in respect of which management requires or wants Council input or feedback;

iv. Uses his/her best efforts to provide or to cause to be provided to the Council, within a reasonable timeframe in advance of each meeting (e.g. 7 days), all reasonably required and available information relating to each matter to be dealt with by the Council at that meeting; and

v. Where, in the Chair’s opinion, the subject matter and expected duration of a meeting or the particular circumstances of a member of the Council would so warrant, encourages a Member to participate in the meeting by means of telephone, teleconference, videoconference or other methodology by which Members participating in the meeting are able to speak to and be heard by each other;

b. Conduct of Council Meetings
i. Acts as the Chair of each Council meeting;
ii. Facilitates and mediates Council decisions;
iii. Facilitates and optimizes the constructive involvement and participation of all Members;
iv. Keeps the Mission, Vision, Values, Strategic Priorities, Belief Statement and identified strategic priorities/initiatives of the MCAAC foremost and uses them as a template/screen for all agendas and work plans;
v. Conducts the business of each meeting in a manner which will result in the meeting’s agenda being completed and dealt with effectively;
vi. Proposes the termination of discussion on any matter at a meeting when he/she is of the opinion that (i) the matter has been thoroughly discussed and that no new points of view or information are being presented; or (ii) the matter falls outside the scope of the agreed upon mandate of the Council.
vii. Attempts to achieve a consensus of Members on any matter discussed at a meeting in respect of which (i) the Council’s decision, views or counsel has been requested or is required, and (ii) Members express conflicting positions, views or counsel and consensus is not available, the Chair will be guided by Robert’s Rules of Order;
viii. Ensures that all Members who wish to address a matter at a meeting are afforded a reasonable opportunity to do so;
ix. Uses all reasonable effort to promote and support the Council’s Guidelines and Charter;
x. In any case where a Member has an interest or potential conflict in respect of a matter to be discussed at a meeting, attempts to arrange for the conflicted Member to excuse himself/herself from all or a portion of the discussion of that matter if the Chair is of the opinion that the discussion of that matter would probably be enhanced by the absence of the conflicted Member; and
xi. Calls special meetings of the Council when necessary.
c. Council Composition and Education
In co-operation with rest of the Council, the Chair:
i. assists in the identification of appropriate candidates to be considered for appointment to the Council;
ii. communicates on behalf of the Council with all proposed nominees for appointment to MCAAC to ensure that they are aware of the accountabilities stated in Council Guidelines, Position Descriptions and Terms of Reference prior to their official appointment;

iii. arranges for management of MCAAC to provide newly elected members with a comprehensive orientation and education program with respect to MCAAC and its businesses;
iv. designs and implements processes for evaluating the performances of the Council and individual Members;
v. uses reasonable effort to cause the Council to be made aware on a timely basis of changes in best practices respecting the responsibilities of Council;
vi. seeks feedback on his/her performance as Chair; and
vii. Makes recommendations regarding the continuing education of Members.
d. Miscellaneous Matters
i. At the request of any member, meets or is available for discussion with that Member between meetings of the Council;
ii. Acts as Chair at all general and annual meetings of MCAAC;
iii. Coaches and mentor any identified successor Chair;
iv. Represents the Council at industry events, conferences, association meetings or other designated events;
v. Communicates with any member as required regarding their performance as a Council Member (attendance, participation, conflict of interest, etc.)
vi. Performs other functions as the Council may specify from time to time.


  1. The Vice Chair upholds the Mohawk College Alumni Association Council (MCAAC) Advisory Guidelines, Belief Statement, Terms of Reference and Charter.
  2. The Vice Chair performs the responsibilities and duties of the MCAAC Chair in the Chair’s absence (see Chair’s Position Description).
  3. The Vice Chair is responsible for helping to resolve any disputes (if called upon) which an individual member may have with another member, including the Chair. 
  4. The Vice Chair Acts as Chair of the Nominating Committee 
  5. The Vice Chair serves on the Executive Committee 
  6. The Vice Chair:
    a. Reports to the Council Chair;
    b. Works closely with the Chair and Director, Alumni Relations;
    c. Participates closely with the Chair to develop and implement member transition plans;
    d. Carries out special assignments as requested by the Chair; and
    e. Performs all other responsibilities and commitments outlined in the MCAA Council Director Position Description.



1. Position Description
The primary responsibilities duties of a Mohawk College Alumni Association Council (MCAAC) Director Member is (i) to contribute consistently and meaningfully to the effective performance of the Council; and (ii) to constructively engage with the Director, Alumni Relations to improve the performance of MCAAC and Alumni Relations.
In discharging his/her responsibilities, a Director Member:
a. Upholds the MCAAC Mission Vision and Values, Advisory Guidelines, Belief Statement, Terms of Reference and Charter;
b. Acts honestly and in good faith with a view to the best interests of MCAAC;
c. Exercises the care, diligence and skill that a reasonably prudent person would exercise in comparable circumstances;
d. Respects and adheres to Council confidentiality;
e. Demonstrates commitment to the strategy of MCAAC;
2. Specific Responsibilities of a Director Member
Without limiting the generality of the primary duty of a Director Member as described in Section 1 above, a Director Member:
a. Qualifications and Preparedness
i. Prepares for meetings and reads in advance all of the materials provided to Members; including Advisory Guidelines, Belief Statement, Terms of Reference, Charter, Governance Principles, Position Descriptions and Nomination Process.
ii. Develops and maintains the ability to read and understand a set of financial statements that present a breadth and level of complexity of accounting issues that are generally comparable to the breadth and complexity of the issues that can reasonably be expected to be raised by MCAAC’s financial statements;
iii. Develops and maintains the ability to understand and appreciate the financial implications of strategies, tactics and transactions proposed by management of MCAAC;
iv. Develops and maintains a reasonable knowledge of the function and activities of the Alumni Relations Department;
v. Understands and respects the differences between the Council’s advisory role and the College/Foundation employee role of the Alumni Relations Department.
vi. Understands and contributes to the evaluation of, choices made, and achievement of MCAAC’s priorities and strategies.
b. Values and Commitment
i. Is demonstrably committed to the success, strategy, and values, of MCAAC;
ii. Is demonstrably committed to honesty and integrity in the conduct of MCAAC’s affairs; and
iii. Accepts accountability, jointly with the rest of the Council, for the performance of the Council.

3. Responsibilities

a. Makes available his/her knowledge and experience for the benefit of MCAAC;
b. Consistently uses his/her best efforts in discharging his/her duties as a Director Member of the Council;
c. Consistently contributes to the evaluation of Council decisions and proposed actions in the context of the MCAAC’s strategy;
d. Provides feedback to the Alumni Relations Department management’s recommendations and proposals when requested;
e. Demonstrates and encourages innovative thinking;
f. Considers an appointment to a committee or working group, when asked;
g. Understands and accepts that the Council speaks with one voice and that no one individual member speaks for the Council unless specifically designated to do so. Refer all media/staff questions related to MCAAC to the Manager or his/her designate.
h. Helps identify, recruit and mentor new Council members;
i. Gets to know other Council members and members of Management; and
j. Participates in a self-evaluation of the Council and individual members.

4. Style

a. Applies a collaborative approach to decision-making by the Council;
b. Is economical with his/her words and the time of the Council;
c. Encourages open and candid discussion of the real issues at meetings of the Council;
d. Listens to and respects the views of other Council Members and members of Management;
e. Is prepared to express honest disagreement with the views of management and other members;
f. Questions and probes Alumni Relations staff and Council decisions in a positive and constructive manner;
g. Is willing to accept and support decisions reached by Council consensus;
h. Attempts to reconcile and integrate various points of view;
i. Directs any concerns about individual members to the Chair for resolution.

5. Time Commitment

a. Attends at least 2/3 or 66 percent the meetings of the regularly scheduled Council meetings per year);
b. Participates in committee and/or ad hoc working groups as needed and appropriate;
c. Attends a minimum of two MCAA Events annually, one of which will be the Alumni of Distinction Awards Dinner; and
d. Makes all reasonable effort to attend the MCAAC Annual Retreat.

6. Member Termination and Resignation 

A Director Member whose annual evaluation shows that he or she has not satisfactorily carried out his/her Commitment as specified in Sections 2 through 5 of this guideline shall be deemed to be in breech of responsibilities and will be considered for disqualification from continuing to serve as a Member. This will only occur following a discussion with the Director Member and the Chair.