Assembly Program/Department Representatives

The Assembly is the main legislative body of GPSG. The Assembly meets regularly to discuss GPSG business, voice concerns, and listen to presentations from University administrators. It is made up of representatives from every department and program across Duke University. One representative is given to each department, and additional representatives are granted per each additional 100 students enrolled in the program. (For example, a program with 99 students receives one representative. A program with 100 students receives 2 representative seats.) Representatives are appointed by each department or program individually.

Representatives are appointed in August. Contact the GPSG Clerk for questions about Assembly representation


The Assembly program/departmental members meet roughly once a month. All meetings are advertised in the GPSG Newsletter and all graduate and professional students are welcome to attend Assembly meetings.

See Meeting Schedule


Meeting Minutes Archive 

The GPSG Assembly Clerk takes minutes at every meeting, and these are circulated to representatives prior to the next meeting for approval.

Meeting Minute Archive


Submit to the Assembly Meeting Agenda

If you wish to propose legislation in the form of a resolution or bylaw amendment, discuss an important issue, or provide information relevant to Duke University graduate and professional students, contact the Speaker of the Secretariat.

Representative Duties

Assembly representatives serve the students of their programs as the Graduate and Professional Student Government legislators. They are responsible for bringing the special concerns of their constituents to the Assembly meetings and leaving the Assembly meetings with new information for their constituents.

What must you do as an Assembly representative?

  • You must attend the Assembly meetings! If your attendance is low, you will lose the privilege of participating in important votes such as the Young Trustee and Executive Committee elections. See the Assembly Rep Handbook for rules governing absence.
  • Communicate with your constituents. Assembly representatives should send out a summary of each meeting to the students they serve. For a helpful guide to structuring your meeting summaries, take a look at past Assembly meeting minutes.
  • Be informed and communicative. Materials are often sent out before an important item is presented at the Assembly – read them! Further, you should elicit the opinions of the students you serve to guide your votes.

What can you do as an Assembly representative?

  • Introduce legislation. Assembly representatives are in control of the governance of GPSG. As such, representatives can propose legislation in the form of bylaw changes or resolutions at the Assembly meetings. To present legislation at the Assembly meetings, contact the Speaker of the Secretariat.
  • Request items to discuss. All GPSG members can request time on the Assembly meeting agenda, and Assembly representatives are no exception! If there is an important topic you think the Assembly should address, contact the Speaker of the Secretariat.

How are Assembly meetings conducted?

Assembly meetings are relatively large. To promote order and allow minority opinions to be heard, we conduct each meeting using Robert’s Rules of Order. At the first fall Assembly meeting, then again at the first spring Assembly meeting, a brief lesson in Robert’s Rules of Order is provided.

Missed the tutorials or need a refresher?

View the Robert’s Rules of Order flow chart and the examples below.

Robert’s Rules Flowchart (PDF)  Download

Examples of Robert’s Rules Download


Resolutions are written legislation that is brought to motion by a member of the Assembly. The main purpose of a resolution is to call a group to action or make a statement of support. They are a written record of the important issues and concerns of the greater graduate and professional student populations and can be shared with administrators.

Creating a resolution

The GPSG Rules Committee strongly suggests using UN Resolution Guidelines. This helps to ensure that all the resolutions have a similar format and are easy to read.

Approving a resolution

A resolution must be submitted no less than three days before the Assembly meeting during which the resolution will be motioned on. A member of the Assembly must motion to discuss and ultimately vote on the resolution. This requires the Assembly to have reached quorum.

View Past Resolutions

For any questions regarding these statements or if you have an issue you would like publicly supported/discussed by GPSG, please contact our current Vice President for Advocacy.