Wells Chapter Xi of New York


Article I. Organization

  1. The members of Phi Beta Kappa who are officially connected with Wells College shall be responsible for the conduct of the business of this Chapter. These shall be designated as active members.
  2. The officers of this chapter shall be a President, a Vice-President, a Secretary, and a Treasurer, and they shall perform the duties usually incumbent upon such officers.
  3. These officers shall be elected by ballot at the third regular meeting of each college year. They shall assume office immediately upon election and continue in office one year or until their successors shall have been elected.
  4. There shall be three standing committees: the Committee on Honorary Membership, the Committee on Alumnae Membership, and the Committee on Members-in-Course. These committees shall be appointed by the President.
  5. Other committees, whether standing or special, may be named by the President.

Article II. Meetings

  1. Three regular meetings shall be held each year; the first as early as possible in the second semester for the election of new members; the second as soon as arrangements can be made to initiate the new members; the third before the close of the college year for the election of officers. In addition, there shall be at least one meeting in the college year open to the public. The exact date shall be fixed by the President.
  2. Special meetings shall be called by the President whenever he/she shall deem it necessary. The President must call a special meeting at the written request of five members.
  3. A quorum shall consist of one-half of all active members for ordinary meetings; or two-thirds of all active members for the election of new members.

Article III. Members

  1. The organization may elect the following classes of members: Honorary, Alumnae, and Members-in-Course.
    1. Honorary Members

      Members of the Faculty, or other persons of distinguished attainments may be elected to honorary membership in the chapter. Such members are to be those whose efforts in the promotion of educational, literary, social, or scientific progress are widely recognized. The number of persons elected to honorary membership shall be limited to one in any one year, and election shall be made only after the Committee on Honorary Membership has submitted complete records of the candidates recommended. Provided, moreover, that no graduate of an institution having a chapter of Phi Beta Kappa shall be elected to honorary membership unless the consent of that chapter has been obtained.

    2. Alumnae Members

      Alumnae members of the chapter shall be elected from among the graduates of the College of ten or more years' standing who have distinguished themselves in art, literature, science, scholarship, or public service. Election of alumnae members shall normally take place only every third year. The maximum number elected in any triennium shall be three. In recommending candidates for alumnae membership, the Committee on Alumnae Membership shall submit full information concerning the record and attainments of each candidate.

    3. Members-in-Course
      1. Those students shall be eligible for membership in the chapter who are of senior standing and who, at the end of their senior year, shall have completed at least two years' work at Wells College.
      2. A list of all seniors included in the highest twenty percent of the class shall be submitted by the Committee on Members-in-Course to the active members of the Chapter for consideration and election. It shall be the policy to elect about ten percent of the graduating class. In no case shall more than fifteen percent of a class be elected to membership.
      3. Members-in-Course shall be elected primarily on the basis of academic rank; consideration shall be given to good moral character, cultural qualities, broad interest in things intellectual, and activity in college affairs. Heads of departments shall be consulted in regard to all candidates.
      4. At each election, candidates shall be voted on in the order of their standing.
  2. All voting on candidates shall be by ballot. The affirmative vote of four-fifths of those present shall be necessary for election.
  3. No discussion of the proceedings of the meeting at which members are elected is permitted, and secrecy is enjoined upon all members present.

Article IV. Initiation

  1. All initiations shall ordinarily occur at the second regular meeting in each year.
  2. The President shall conduct the ceremony using the Ritual provided by the United Chapters.

Article V. Fees and Keys

  1. On or before the date of their initiation, all persons elected to membership in the Chapter shall pay the required fee.
  2. Annual dues shall be paid by the active members of the chapter.
  3. Orders for Phi Beta Kappa keys shall not be issued to any person until after initiation as a member. Exception may be made where members are inevitably prevented from appearing for initiation for a considerable time.
  4. The Secretary shall report promptly to the Secretary of the United Chapters the names of all persons initiated into the Chapter, and shall forward to the Treasurer of the United Chapters the required fee for each new member.

Article VI. Amendments

  1. By a four-fifths vote of those present at any regular or special meeting of the chapter, these by-laws may be amended. Notice of the proposed amendment must, however, have been sent to all active members of the Chapter at least ten days before the said meeting. All changes are subject to the approval of the Senate in accordance with Article VI of the Constitution.