Congratulations on your election to sergeant-at-arms! In this role, you are the primary organizer and overseer of the accountability system within the chapter (the judicial board and all associated processes) and also the one who maintains proper order within chapter meetings. You’ll spend your term ensuring that there is accountability and order within the chapter. Your weekly tasks might include:
- Holding and presiding over weekly judicial board meetings
- Attending and giving a report at weekly committee chair and chapter meetings
- Ensuring that due process takes place in every aspect of judiciary proceedings
- Managing the sergeant-at-arms budget
- Enforcing the judicial policy
- Ensuring that proper parliamentary procedure occurs during chapter meetings
If accountability is the lifeblood of fraternity, you are responsible for the execution. The culture you maintain in your chapter is one of the most important foundational elements of our organization!
Organize the Judicial Board
The judicial board is a group of brothers used to enforce chapter bylaws and uphold members to the high standards of Pi Kappa Alpha. It is a means to hold brothers accountable in an unbiased and fair way. As such, it should be selected carefully.
The same judicial board should not be used for an entire quarter or semester, as this could allow for conflict of interest to arise as well as judicial board members’ decisions to be influenced by other chapter members. The sergeant-at-arms is responsible for appointing the judicial board, with approval from the president, each time an issue arises.
The judicial board should be composed of:
- 5 members plus the sergeant-at-arms serving as an ex-officio (nonvoting) 6th member
- 1 freshman, 1 sophomore, 1 junior, 1 senior, and one other
- All members from different pledge classes
- Members who represent different personalities of the chapter
- Members who do not live together
Set the Budget
When setting the budget for sergeant-at-arms, you must take into consideration all of the possible expenses that may be incurred during your position and then work with the treasurer to allocate the correct amount of the budget to sergeant-at-arms. You can first begin to think of all of the expenses that will be incurred during your tenure.
After reviewing the expenses of sergeant-at-arms, you can determine that a majority of the expenses will be incurred primarily in regard to ritual and regalia as well as supplies for initiation, as you should not need to allocate funds to simply hold judicial board meetings.
The list of expenses may then look something like this:
- Overseeing and maintaining the Ritual and regalia
- New Ritual Books (if necessary)
- Replacement Regalia
- Initiation supplies (unless ordered by the new member education chairman)
- Initiate badges (unless ordered by the secretary)
Once you have determined what the expenses will be, you can then begin to work with the treasurer to ensure the correct amount is allocated to the sergeant-at-arms budget. The best way to go about working with the treasurer is to submit this information with the approximate corresponding amounts into the treasurer on the committee budget request form. This form can be found online at www.pikes.org in the financial documents of the officer resources. It would be beneficial to practice working with this document to make sure you fully understand how it works before developing your sergeant-at-arms budget with the document.
The PIKE Blog and the PIKE Podcast are resources available to you to help manage and support you in this role, as well as your judicial board. Both platforms have resources specific to you, and sharing them is a simple as a few clicks. We can’t wait to see everything you’ll accomplish this year!
Jarrett M. WayDirector of Educational Content & Strategy