The Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health was founded in 1924 at Johns Hopkins University within the School of Hygiene and Public Health (now known as the Bloomberg School of Public Health) by two graduate students, Dr. Edgar Erskine Hume and Dr. Claude W. Mitchell. At the time, public health as a profession was still in its infancy and, prior to the establishment of university-based education in public health, entrance into the field had been largely through practical experience and political favor. To promote the graduate study of the field, Dr. Hume and Dr. Mitchell organized this honorary society in order to recognize outstanding achievement in the new field. Over 80 years later, Delta Omega has expanded to more than
100 chapters throughout the world and has more than
20,000 members from top echelons of graduate schools and programs of public health, as well as the public health community.
The society still honors the ideals that initially formed its foundation, even as the meaning and scope of public health has broadened tremendously. Membership in Delta Omega reflects the dedication of an individual to increasing the quality of the field, as well as to the protection and advancement of the health of all people. To learn more about the history and founding of the Delta Omega Honorary Society in Public Health, click here.
As each chapter varies in size, specialties, and setting, the society is a chapter-based one so that members and the chapter's community can have a tailored experience. Each chapter conducts the principal Delta Omega activities and manages the induction of new members, more information on these opportunities are viewable here.
The Delta Omega National Office -- based in Washington, DC -- supports and maintain the ever-growing network of Delta Omega chapters. To help connect our chapters and members, the national office oversees an annual APHA Student Poster Session, Innovative Curriculum Award for faculty, National Day of Service, and an annual meeting and reception. More information on these activities can be found on our Events and Competitions page.