Candidate and Electee Information

Updated for Fall 2017

The Fall 2017 Candidate Handbook can be found here.

Candidates and Electees

There are two stages to joining Tau Beta Pi. First, students that are academically eligible to join Tau Beta Pi are called candidates. After the first two chapter meetings, candidates who have completed a few initial requirements are elected by the current members, and are called electees. Prior to becoming a member, electees must complete the membership requirements.

The following information is broken down into what needs to be done as a candidate in order to be elected and what needs to be done as an electee to become a member.

Candidate Eligibility Information

Candidates are students that are academically eligible to join Tau Beta Pi, but have not yet been elected by the Chapter. Candidates must meet the following requirements:
  • Most majors offered by the Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering are accepted courses of study, however, Digital Arts & Sciences, Nuclear and Radiological Sciences, and Undecided - Engineering are not eligible majors.
  • Only upperclassmen (juniors, seniors, and graduate students) are eligible to join Tau Beta Pi.
    • Juniors are those undergraduate students who have completed at least two years (but less than three years) of an eligible engineering degree.
    • Seniors are those undergraduate students who have completed at least three years of an eligible engineering degree.
    • Transfer students are not eligible until they have completed one year at the University of Florida; once they have completed one year, they will be considered seniors.
    • Graduate students must have completed at least 50% of coursework and research to be eligible. Contact the Graduate Coordinator, Shannon Brown, with questions.
The GPA requirements will change from semester to semester.
  • Juniors: Top 1/8th of their class (Started in Summer 2014, Fall 2014 or Spring 2015)
  • Seniors: Top 1/5th of their class (Started in or before Spring 2014, transferred in or before Summer 2015)
  • Graduate: Top 1/5th of their class (Classification of 7EG, 8EG, or 9EG)
  • Distance Learning/EDGE Students are eligible to join, please contact the VP of Electees for more information on the process.

Membership Process

Membership Requirements

In order for our chapter members to get to know you better, we require you to complete or participate in the following activities. These may be completed before or after election, but must be completed prior to initiation. It is strongly recommended that you participate in social or service activities prior to election, so that chapter members know you are interested in joining.
  • Attend at least 3 out of the 4 general body meetings
    • Note that only initiated members will attend the Members Only Meeting and Candidate Election Meeting.
  • Attend at least two socials
  • Complete 6 hours of community service with Tau Beta Pi
    • Attend one GatorTRAX session (counts for 3 of the 6 hours). Any additional session attended will also count towards the service hour requirement.

The following requirements must be complete prior to election.

  • Complete informal interview
    • Complete short online Application and Interview Form prior to the interview
    • Sign up for an interview here
    • Candidates that do not interview prior to Meeting 3 will not be eligible for election
    • Interviews are informal, non-technical, and must be completed by a member of the interview committee during Office Hours: President Maddie Sciullo, Vice President Jessica Matthews, VPs of Electees Madeline Fuchs and Shreedevi Kumar, Corresponding Secretary Justin Cohen, and the Graduate Coordinator Shannon Brown. Graduate students should be interviewed by Shannon Brown.
  • Graduate students only:
    • The Graduate, Alumnus, and Eminent Engineer Qualification Form is due by Wednesday, September 27 by 5 PM. The form and instructions can be found on the Instructions page. Undergraduates do NOT fill out this form.
    • Accompanying the form must be a signed letter from your primary academic advisor stating that you are in the top 1/5 of your class and have completed at least 50% of your coursework and research. Sample letters can also be found on the instructions page. For non-thesis Master's students not writing a thesis, you are still required to turn in a letter, stating that you are not required to do research and are 50% of the way done with coursework.

The following requirements must be complete after election for electees to be eligible for initiation.

  • Attend the Electee Only social
  • Fill out Catalog Card - link will be sent out from National Headquarters after Meeting 3
  • Pay one-time $100 dues by Meeting 4
    • Dues are non-refundable, and may be paid via cash or check and made out to "Tau Beta Pi"
  • Attend Initiation!

Election Process

To uphold the Association's character standards, candidates must be evaluated and elected by the active members of the Chapter to become members. To evaluate character of candidates, the active members will consider the following points:

  • Attendance at all Chapter meetings prior to election
  • Answers to the interview questions
  • If the candidate has completed some service hours and/or attended a social
    • Keep in mind, if the active members don't know who you are, they can't evaluate your character
  • If the candidate has any "red flags."
    • Red flags include, but are not limited to, being arrested, cheating, behavioral misconduct, and breaking commitments with the Chapter. Please contact us ASAP if you have any questions about red flags.

As listed above, prior to election, candidates are required to complete the following paperwork:

  • Graduate students only: complete eligibility paperwork
  • Complete short online application and interview form prior to informal interview

Once a candidate has been elected, he or she is an electee and must complete his or her remaining requirements prior to initiation.

Electees are not required to polish their bent, but instructions can be found here if they choose to. The meaning of Bent is explained at Initiation, but you can read about its origins in the following passage which is an excerpt from the Tau Beta Pi Information Book.

    The official badge of the Association is a watch key in the form of the bent of a trestle. The word key describes the insignia of many organizations. It comes from the fact that it was first designed, in the late eighteenth century, to include a pocketwatch winding feature, hence key. The bottom stem, added to the basic insignia, had a tapered square hole fitting the common sizes of watch-winding shafts. The top stem and ring were added so that the key could be worn as a pendant from a chain, rather than as a pin or badge, thus easily used to wind watches. When the "stem-winder" watch was introduced in the late nineteenth century, it replaced the key-winder. But the insignia key remained, although with a vestigial hole now round for manufacturing ease and economy.

Contact the VP of Electees with questions about the electee requirements.


Make-Up for Missed Events

If you cannot complete one of the electee requirements or cannot make a meeting due to an exam, class, or emergency, we are happy to work with you to accommodate your situation. For any missed event, you must notify the VP of Electees within 24 hours prior to the start of the event (or as soon as possible for emergencies). Additionally, you must make up the missed event before initiation.

  • More than 1 meeting: 2 additional hours community service for each meeting missed
  • Cannot attend any socials: 2 additional hours of community service for each required social
  • Cannot attend Electee Only social: 2 additional hours of community service
  • GatorTRAX Session: 2 additional hours community service
  • If you are unable to complete all service hours through Tau Beta Pi, up to half may be completed through another organization. You must contact the VP of Electees prior to election for approval.

Distinguished Electees and Electee Awards

Only distinguished electees are eligible for Best Electee. To be a distinguished electee, you must complete the following additional requirements:

  • Attend at least one Engineering Futures session
  • Complete three additional service hours
  • Attend any additional social

The "Best Electee" is chosen by the VP of Electees. The winner must have completed the additional requirements for distinguished electee status and is not required to attend the banquet.

The "Best Bent" is awarded to an electee who chooses to polish their bent. (Note that electees are not required to polish their bents.) Officers present at the banquet will vote on this award, the Best Electee is not excluded from consideration, and the winner must attend the banquet.

Initiation

To become a member of Tau Beta Pi, an electee MUST attend initiation. There are no exceptions. Initiation will start promptly at 6:00PM on Friday, November 17, 2017. Any late electees will not be initiated so be there early. Dress is business formal, meaning no jeans, sneakers, mini-skirts, polos, or t-shirts. Be sure to bring your bent with you, whether you choose to polish it or not.

If you are unable to attend our chapter's initiation ceremony, please contact the VP of Electees or President ASAP. You may be eligible to attend another Florida chapter's ceremony or be postponed to the following semester if you complete the requirements this semester.

There will be a dinner banquet following initiation where awards are distributed. Learn more about the banquet and awards on the Banquet page.