Alpha Omega Alpha, commonly referred to as AOhmA, can be thought of as the "Phi Beta Kappa for medical schools". Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) is the only national honor medical society in the world. A group of six medical students established the society at the College of Physicians and Surgeons in Chicago in 1902 with the motto: "Worthy to serve the suffering." For over a century, AOA's mission has remained constant:
It is the duty of members to foster the scientific and philosophical features of the medical profession, to look beyond self to the welfare of the profession and of the public, to cultivate social mindedness, as well as individualistic attitude toward responsibilities, to show respect for colleagues, especially for elders and teachers, to foster research and in all ways to ennoble the profession of medicine and advance it in public opinion. It is equally a duty to avoid that which is unworthy, including the commercial spirit and all practices injurious to the welfare of patients, the public, or the profession.
2013 AOA Inductees
As with all true honors, the honor of AOA membership is accompanied by the responsibility to sustain the vision and goals of the society:
- Professionalism - To hold the conviction that professionalism in medicine is a worthy goal.
- Scholarship - To promote scholarship among medical professionals.
- Leadership - To set an example worth emulating.
- Service - To serve the medical profession and the community.