Alumni Advisory Council Guidelines

Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council Terms Of Reference

Article 1 - Name and Interpretation

1.1 Name:

The name of the group shall be the Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council. (MCAAC).

1.2 Definitions

  • “College” refers to Mohawk College of Applied Arts and Technology.
  • “Association” refers to the Mohawk College Alumni Association (MCAA).
  • “Council” refers to the Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council (MCAAC).
  • “Member” refers to Council member.
  • “Alumni” includes alumnus and alumna.
  • “Alumni Relations” refers to the Alumni Relations Department of Mohawk College.
  • “MSA” refers to the Mohawk Students’ Association.
  • “MCACES” refers to the Mohawk College Association of Continuing Education Students.
  • “Foundation” refers to the Mohawk College Foundation.
  • “College Resource” refers to a Mohawk College employee who is a resource to the Council.

Article 2 - Relationship of the Alumni Advisory Council to the Mohawk College Alumni Association

The Mohawk College Alumni Association (MCAA) is a membership based organization. Individuals become members when they graduate from a full or part time program at Mohawk College.

The Council acts in an advisory capacity to the Alumni Relations Department and the college. The purpose of the Council is to act as a group of ambassadors and to provide advice and support to the College, the Alumni Relations Department and key college staff. The Council exists to provide insight and recommendations to ensure the primary focus of activities of the Alumni Relations Department is directed to fully engaging Mohawk Alumni within the college, the Association and the Council.
The Alumni Relations Department receives its operating budget from the Mohawk College Alumni Ancillary Fee, approved by the MSA, from Mohawk College, and from activities and programs that generate revenue. The annual budget is approved by Mohawk College.

The Alumni Advisory Council will be guided by the College’s Vision, Mission and Values and will establish goals and strategies from time to time to advance these priorities.

Article 3 - Mission of the Alumni Association

The Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council works collaboratively with the Alumni Relations Department to fulfill the overarching mission of the college. The MCAAC does this through being:

  1. Ambassadors for Mohawk College:
    • MCAAC members are expected to get involved by promoting events, engaging and recruiting alumni, mentoring young alumni, participating in events, and sharing expertise with support from the College.
  2. Advisors for the Alumni Relations department and the College :
    • MCAAC members are called upon to be a collective voice representing members of the Alumni Association, sharing perspectives, experiences and insights as both a council and Association member.
    • advise and recommend, to the College and/or the Foundation, on matters such as award recipients, strategy, programs, events, projects, partnerships, opportunities, and use of restricted funds.
    • to provide feedback on events, programs, services and other activities
  3. Decision-makers for the affairs of the Council:
    • working to develop, monitor and execute an annual work plan
    • contributing items to meeting agendas,
    • approving meeting minutes,
    • ensuring that MCAAC engages in self-evaluation by assessing its own performance against agreed-upon terms of reference,
    • ensuring that MCAAC’s work is documented accurately,
    • providing input into the recruitment of new members based on college strategic priorities,
    • ensuring that new members receive orientation, training and mentor support
    • providing input and participating in the MCAAC Annual Retreat

Article 4 - Membership and Terms of Office of the Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council

The Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council consists of graduates of Mohawk College who are members of the Mohawk College Alumni Association.


4.1 Council Members: Any person who has successfully completed a Full Time post-secondary diploma or certificate program from Mohawk College or its predecessor institutions. Any person who has successfully completed through Part Time or Continuing Education a postsecondary or graduate certificate or diploma program, apprenticeship program or collaborative degree program from Mohawk College or its predecessor institutions, and pays the membership fee.

  • The Members of the Council shall be appointed by the Alumni Advisory Council at the Annual Meeting or by majority vote at one of its meetings, where notice has been duly served.
  • The term for Members shall be two years. Members can serve three consecutive two year terms for a total of six years maximum. Where required provisions may be made for Chair-elect, Chair and Past Chair to a maximum of 12 years.
  • Any Council Member who has completed six consecutive years of service must wait a period of two years before they can be considered for an additional appointment to the Council.

 

4.2 Vice- Chair: A Council member who has completed one, two year term is eligible for running for the Vice Chair position. This position is elected by the Council. The term for the Vice-Chair is two years. The incumbent may not be a “College Resource”.

4.3 Chair: An individual who has completed a two year term as Vice-Chair is eligible for the Chair position. The term for the Chair is two years. The incumbent may not be a “College Resource”.

4.4 Past Chair: An individual who has completed a two year term as Chair will serve as Past Chair. The term for the Past Chair is two years.

4.5 Vacancies: Vacancies on the Council may be filled at any time as required by the Council from Regular Members of the Association. New Council members shall be nominated by the Nominating Committee consisting of the Chair, Vice Chair and Director Alumni Relations and are presented to, and voted on, by the Council.

4.6 Honourary Members: An individual who is an outstanding supporter or has contributed greatly to the Mohawk College Alumni Association will be recognized with an Honorary Membership.

Honorary Members are non-voting. Please see Appendix A

Article 5 - Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council

5.1 Association Governance: The Council shall act in an advisory role regarding the affairs of the Association.

5.2 Composition: The Council shall consist of a total of 10 to 15 members of which a minimum of 2/3 should be external community members and not employees of the college. The Council’s intention is to be diversified and shall seek to have representation from the various schools, programs and years of graduation from Mohawk College and efforts will be made to ensure the Council represents the diversity of Mohawk Alumni.

  • There shall, additionally, be representation from:
    • The Mohawk Students’ Association (President and/or Past President Executive or designate).
    • The Mohawk College Association of Continuing Education Students Advisory Council,
    • The Mohawk College Foundation
    • The Director, Alumni Relations
    • Chief Marketing Officer
    • Vice President Student and Alumni Services (or their designate).

 

These are ex-officio, non- voting members of the Council. These positions shall be deemed as “College Resources”.

  • Any member of the Association may attend meetings of the Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council, except for in-camera sessions unless so invited by the Council.
  • Guests may be permitted at a meeting of the Council at the invitation of any member of the Council or the Director, Alumni Relations.

 

5.3 Quorum: Fifty percent (50%), plus one of filled memberships of the Council shall constitute a quorum and must include one of the Chair; or the Vice-Chair. This represents the minimum council voice for discussions and when decisions are necessary.

5.4 Meetings of the Council: The Council will meet at dates, times and places as agreed upon by the Council and the college. Additional meetings as required may be held at the call of the Chair or quorum of the Council. Notice of every meeting shall be delivered to all Council members. The Council shall meet quarterly throughout the year, at a minimum.

Council is open to utilizing available technologies to facilitate the inclusion of Members living at a distance from the Hamilton area.

5.5 Task Forces: The Council shall establish ad-hoc taskforces as it deems necessary to carry out the affairs of the Council and Association.

Examples - Nominating Task Force
The Nominating Task Force will recruit potential new Council Members to the Alumni Advisory Council. Potential Members will be presented to the Council for review and approval. This task force is made up of the Chair, Vice Chair and Director Alumni Relations.

Article 6 - Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council Roles

6.1 Annual Meeting: The primary responsibilities of a Mohawk College Alumni Association Council (MCAAC) 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 Council Member:

  • Upholds the College Vision, Mission and Values and Advisory Council Terms of Reference;
  • Acts honestly and in good faith with a view to the best interests of MCAAC and the college;
  • Respects and adheres to Council confidentiality;
  • Demonstrates commitment to the strategy of the Alumni Relations department, and MCAAC;

 

Specific Responsibilities of a Council Member

Without limiting the generality of the primary duty of a Council Member as described above, a Member:

Qualifications and Preparedness

  • Prepares for meetings and reads in advance all of the materials provided to Members
  • Develops and maintains the ability to understand and appreciate the financial implications of strategies, tactics and transactions proposed by the College or the MCAAC;
  • Develops and maintains a reasonable knowledge of the function and activities of the Alumni Relations Department;
  • Understands and respects the differences between the Council’s advisory role and the College employee role of the Alumni Relations Department;
  • Understands and contributes to the evaluation of, choices made, and achievement of MCAAC’s priorities and strategies.

 

6.2 Vice Chair: The Vice Chair upholds the Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council (MCAAC) Terms of Reference, and the College’s Vision, Mission and Values. The Vice Chair performs the responsibilities and duties of the MCAAC Chair in the Chair’s absence (see Chair’s Responsibilities).

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.

The Vice Chair:

  • Acts as the leader in absence of the Council Chair;
  • Works closely with the Chair and Director, Alumni Relations;
  • Participates closely with the Chair to develop and implement member transition plans;
  • Carries out special assignments as requested by the Chair; and
  • Performs all other responsibilities and commitments outlined in the MCAA Council Member responsibilities.

 

6.3 Chair: The Chair of the Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council (MCAAC) upholds the MCAAC Terms of Reference, and the College’s Vision, Mission, Values and Belief Statement. The Chair of the MCAAC is responsible for facilitating highly effective Council performance.

In discharging his/her responsibility, the Chair:

  • provides leadership to the Council on specific issues;
  • is responsive to the ongoing needs of Council;
  • in accordance with the direction of the Council, acts as the spokesperson for the Council;
  • at the request of the Council and/or the Director, Alumni Relations, acts as an intermediary between the Council and the Director;
  • at the request of the Council and/or the Director, provide supports to the Director;
  • in collaboration with the Director, Alumni Relations, acts as a spokesperson for the MCAAC; and
  • performs all other responsibilities and commitments outlined in the MCAA Council Member responsibilities.

In the absence of the Chair, the Vice Chair acts as Interim Chair.

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 Terms of Reference.
Without limiting the general responsibilities of the Chair described above, the Chair:

Pre-Council Meeting Preparation

  • In collaboration with the College assists in scheduling 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;

 

Conduct of Council Meetings

  • Acts as the Chair of each Council meeting;
  • Facilitates and mediates Council decisions;
  • Facilitates and optimizes the constructive involvement and participation of all Members;
  • Keeps the Vision, Mission, Values and Strategic Priorities of the College and Alumni Relations and identified strategic priorities/initiatives of the MCAAC foremost and uses them as a template/screen for all agendas and work plans;
  • Conducts the business of each meeting in a manner which will result in the meeting’s agenda being completed and dealt with effectively;
  • 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.
  • 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;
  • Ensures that all Members who wish to address a matter at a meeting are afforded a reasonable opportunity to do so;
  • Uses all reasonable effort to promote and support the Council’s Terms of Reference;
  • In any case where a Member has an interest or potential conflict in respect to 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; if the Chair is of the opinion that the discussion of the matter would probably be enhanced by the absence of the conflicted Member;
  • Calls special meetings of the Council when necessary.

 

Council Composition and Education

In co-operation with the Council Vice-Chair, the Chair:

  • assists in the identification of appropriate candidates to be considered for appointment to the Council;
  • communicates on behalf of the Council with all proposed nominees for appointment to MCAAC to ensure that they are aware of the understand and support the Council Terms of Reference, and the College’s Mission, Vision, and Values prior to their official appointment;
  • arranges for management of MCAAC to provide newly elected members with a comprehensive orientation and education program with respect to MCAAC and its businesses;
  • in collaboration with the College designs and implements processes for evaluating the performances of the Council and individual Members;
  • 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;
  • seeks feedback on his/her performance as Chair; and
  • Makes recommendations regarding the continuing education of Council Members.

 

Miscellaneous Matters

  • At the request of any member, meets or is available for discussion with that Member between meetings of the Council;
  • Acts as Chair at all general and annual meetings of MCAAC;
  • Coaches and mentors any identified successor Chair;
  • Represents the Council at industry events, conferences, association meetings or other designated events;
  • Communicates with any member as required regarding their performance as a Council Member (attendance, participation, conflict of interest, etc.)
  • Performs other functions as the Council may specify from time to time.

 

6.4 Past Chair: The Past Chair upholds the Mohawk College Alumni Advisory Council Terms of Reference, the College’s Vision, Values and Belief Statement.

The Past Chair is responsible for helping to resolve any disputes (if called upon) which an individual Member may have with another Member, including the Chair.

The Past Chair may be called upon to serve as a representative on the Mohawk College Foundation Board of Directors.

The Past Chair:

  • Works closely with the Chair, Vice Chair and Director, Alumni Relations;
  • Participates closely with the Chair to develop and implement Member transition plans;
  • Carries out special assignments as requested by the Chair; and
  • Performs all other responsibilities and commitments as outlined in the MCAA Council Member responsibilities.

Article 7 - Alumni Logo

The use of the official Alumni Association logo (Mohawk College Alumni Association crest) is governed by Mohawk College brand guidelines.
Appendix:

Honourary Members:
Stephen Baldwin
Carolyn Gray
Cal Haddad
Evelyn Holman
Keith McIntyre