About Ritmos Latinos

Ritmos Latinos is an organization at the University of Arizona that promotes Latin music and dance to U of A students and Tucson salsa enthusiasts. This website will be utilized to promote and expose any dance and music-related activities that are happening at the U of A or in the community. Since its beginning, Ritmos Latinos has provided the Tucson community with a way for students to understand Latin music and dance through the various classes offered. In particular, Ritmos Latinos teaches Rueda de Casino which is a form of Cuban style salsa dancing (learn more about Rueda de Casino). This DailyWildcat article features Ritmos Latinos from our students’ perspective. Watch some of our fabulous members sharing their Ritmos experiences here in this short video. We hope that you enjoy this website and that you decide to become part of our wonderful community.

Ritmos Latinos Officers

Active Date: January 2023

  • University Advisor: Isamu Matsuyama
  • President: Robert Edward Melikyan
  • Vice President: Kaden Anderson
  • Treasurer: Marissa Conn
  • Membership Coordinator: Mithun Paul
  • Event Coordinator: Samarrah Stephan
  • Outreach Coordinator: Kristina Mihajlovic
  • Technical Support: Mike Siakotos
  • Webmasters: Gerardo Armendariz

Constitution for Ritmos Latinos at the University of Arizona


The name of this organization shall be Ritmos Latinos. Ritmos Latinos shall be recognized as a student organization by the Associated Students of the University of Arizona (ASUA).

ARTICLE 2: Purpose

The purpose of this organization shall be:

  1. To promote interest in Latin music and dance at the University of Arizona and within the Tucson community.
  2. To promote Rueda de Casino, a specific Latin dance which originated in Havana, Cuba.
  3. To provide fellowship among students, faculty, staff, and the Tucson community.

ARTICLE 3: Membership

Membership in the organization for one semester shall be granted to all who pay the membership dues at the beginning of the semester, and to those who volunteer to help with club activities in that semester. Members shall be classified into two categories:

  1. Student Members: Any current students, faculty, and staff at the University of Arizona or Pima Community College shall be classified as Student Members.
  2. Community Members: Any Members that do not fall under the category of Student Members shall be classified as Community Members.

ARTICLE 4: Executive Committee

The executive committee shall consist of a President, Treasurer, Membership Coordinator, Event Coordinator, Faculty Advisor, Instructor Coordinator and a Community Liaison. The organization must identify at least a President, Treasurer, and Faculty/Staff Advisor every term. Important club decisions shall be made by a two-thirds vote within the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 5: Officers

Offices open to Student Members only shall include the President, Treasurer, Membership Coordinator, and Event Coordinator. The position of Community Liaison shall be held preferably by a Community Member. The President and Treasurer shall have at least one semester of leadership or volunteer experience with the club before taking office. Officers shall be elected by the Members at the End of the Semester party every Fall semester with the exception of the Instructor Coordinator who is appointed by the instructors each semester before the End of the Semester party for the following semester. Instructor Coordinator nominees must have at least two semesters of teaching experience within the club, with at least one Beginner and one I1 class.

The President shall:

  • Act as the spokesperson for the organization
  • Develop a comprehensive schedule for the semester
  • Provide directions to the activities of all other Officers
  • Ensure that the duties and obligations of all other Officers are being completed
  • Enforce the Constitution and bylaws of the organization
  • Approve significant organization expenditures
  • Attend ASUA meetings as required

The Treasurer shall:

  • Prepare an annual budget for the organization
  • Maintain a record of all financial transactions
  • Report on income and expenditures every semester
  • Maintain the bank account of the organization
  • Collect membership dues at the start of each semester
  • Reimburse other Officers for authorized expenses
  • Attend ASUA meetings as required

The Membership Coordinator shall:

  • Manage the membership registration process in the first three weeks of the semester
  • Enlist Volunteers to aide in the registration process
  • Serve as a liaison between the Executive Committee, Instructors, and Members
  • Manage RSVPs and registrations for the End of Semester parties
  • Perform other duties as directed by the President

The Event Coordinator shall:

  • Organize and coordinate the End of Semester parties
  • Organize and coordinate participation at events on campus or in the Tucson community
  • Promote outreach in the Tucson community
  • Perform other duties as directed by the President

The Community Liaison shall:

  • Represent the Community Members in Executive Committee meetings
  • Serve as a liaison between the Community Members and the Executive Committee
  • Provide suggestions towards the working of the organization on behalf of the community

The Instructor Coordinator shall:

  • Serve as a liaison between Instructors and Membership Coordinator
  • Work with the Instructors to develop syllabi and schedule for the classes
  • Conduct instructor feedback surveys in the middle and at the end of the semester
  • Convey the results and feedback from the surveys to the instructors.

ARTICLE 6: Officer Elections

Officers (with the exception of the Instructor Coordinator) shall be elected at the end of the Fall semester and serve a term of one year. The term of office for all Officers shall begin on January 1st and end on December 31st.

Nominees for the offices of President, Treasurer, Membership Coordinator, and Event Coordinator shall be Student Members. Nominees for Community Liaison shall preferably be Community Members. Nominees for President and Treasurer shall have at least one semester of leadership or volunteer experience with the organization before holding office.

The President shall announce Officer elections during the Fall semester. The announcement shall include deadlines to submit candidacies for officer positions. The candidates shall be announced before the Fall End of Semester party.

Elections shall be conducted in-person by secret ballot at the start of the Fall End of Semester party. Officers shall be elected by majority of the Members present at the End of Semester party. Results shall be announced on the same day.

If a position remains open after elections (except President or Treasurer) or any officer is removed from the office, the elected Officers shall decide on dividing the required tasks of the open positions amongst themselves or appoint somebody on a temporary basis until next elections.

ARTICLE 7: Removal from office

Any officer may be removed from office for failure to perform his/her duties by a two-thirds vote of the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 8: Faculty/Staff Advisor

There shall be one full-time University of Arizona faculty or staff member who shall serve as an Advisor to the organization. The Advisor shall be selected by the Executive Committee.

The Faculty/Staff Advisor shall:

  • Attend all general and Executive Committee meetings
  • Call meetings of the Executive Committee when necessary
  • Ensure that the organization follows University policies
  • Approve significant organization expenditures
  • Review financial records at the end of each semester.
  • Inform the group of infractions of their bylaws, codes, and standing rules
  • Mediate interpersonal conflicts that arise within the organization
  • Represent the organization in any conflicts with members of the University faculty/staff
  • Facilitate an orderly transition of responsibilities between old and new Officers

ARTICLE 9: Instructors

Instructors for Rueda de Casino classes shall be Volunteers. They shall have taken classes at least up to the Intermediate 2 level. In addition to this, Instructors shall have undergone student-instructor mentoring for at least one semester and/or have the approval of the President.

At the beginning of every semester, the Membership Coordinator shall place a call for Instructors to past and interested Members. An Instructor meeting shall be held no later than 3 weeks before the scheduled start of the Rueda de Casino classes. The Instructor meeting shall be attended by at least two Officers from the Executive Committee.

The Instructor Meeting shall include the following:

  • Selection of the Instructors for the upcoming classes*
  • Discussion of the weekly schedule of classes*
  • Development of syllabi for each of the classes
  • Discussion of potential student-instructors

*Instructors and the schedule shall be finalized based on interest, availability, level, and history of instruction in a democratic manner. In case of disputes, preferences shall be given to Instructors who have not taught in the past two semesters.

ARTICLE 10: General Meeting

The organization shall have at least one General Meeting per semester. The general meeting shall be presided by the Executive Committee. All current Members shall be invited to attend.

The General Meeting shall include the following:

  • Information and updates on the organization
  • Treasurer’s report from previous semester
  • Calendar of events, including community/outreach events, and End of Semester party
  • Discussion of any issues within the organization
  • Election information in the Fall semester

ARTICLE 11: Rueda de Casino Classes

Classes shall be held every week and for at least 12 weeks in the Spring and Fall semesters, and for at least 8 weeks in the Summer semester.

Classes shall start no sooner than 1 week and no later than 4 weeks from the start of the semester. The End of the Semester party shall be held before Final exams end.

The number of classes held every semester shall be determined by the interest and availability of instructors. At least one beginner level and one Intermediate level class shall be held every semester.

The first class of the semester shall be free-to-try for everyone. The organization shall not accept new members after the 2nd week of classes.

Instructors are free to organize additional practices and students are welcome to attend, but these are not mandatory for participation in the performance. However, instructors may require attendance to a reasonable number of regularly scheduled classes as a prerequisite to perform. Let’s keep it fun!

The decision to hold Summer classes shall be made by the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 12: Funding

Dues shall be charged for membership during the first two weeks of the Rueda de Casino classes. The amount of dues for each year/semester shall be determined at the General Meeting. Student Members shall pay discounted organization dues. Membership for the organization lasts one semester and ends at the End of Semester party.

ARTICLE 13: Constitutional Amendments

Amendments to this Constitution shall be adopted by a two-thirds vote within the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 14: Statement of Non-discrimination

This organization shall not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or genetic information in any of its policies, procedures, and practices. This policy will include, but is not limited to recruiting, membership, organization activities, or opportunity to hold office.

ARTICLE 15: Not-for-profit Statement

This is a not-for-profit organization.

ARTICLE 16: Statement of Financial Responsibility

A specific member or members designated by this organization shall be responsible for payment in full of all debts accumulated by the organization not covered by funds on deposit.

ARTICLE 17: Statement of Non-hazing

This organization will not conspire to engage in hazing, participate in hazing, or commit any act that causes or is likely to cause bodily danger, physical harm or personal degradation, or disgrace resulting in physical or mental harm to any fellow student or person attending the institution.

ARTICLE 18: Statement of Compliance with Campus Regulations

This organization shall comply with all University and campus policies and regulations, in addition to all local, state, and federal laws.

Latest Revision Date: January 10, 2018