Professional Associations of Public Health

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Joining a professional association is a great way to:

  • Stay up to date
  • Make connections with other public health professionals
  • Learn about new jobs and opportunities
  • Get personal and professional support in your career

About Professional Associations of Public Health

There are many local, state, national and international professional associations established to support public health professionals in all specialty areas and serving all different populations. Some of these organizations have a broad or comprehensive public health focus, like the American Public Health Association (APHA), while others have been created to serve specialty areas, such as the Society of Public Health Educators (SOPHE). In addition, some of the large, national level associations have corresponding state chapters. For example the Minnesota Public Health Association (MPHA) is a state-level chapter of the APHA.

Professional AssociationsNearly all of these professional associations require that you pay an annual fee in order to become a member. Some offer discounted rates to students and new professionals.

Professional associations often host an annual conference and hold regular meetings. These events are held not only to accomplish the work required to manage the association (e.g., voting on by-laws, choosing board members, etc) but are also designed to provide their members with an opportunity to network with colleagues, while advancing their professional education by attending presentations on important public health topics.

Many national and international associations also produce their own peer-reviewed publications or journals. The American Journal of Public Health is an example of a peer reviewed publication produced by the American Public Health Association. Some associations allow non-members to subscribe to their publication, while others include a subscription to the journal with a membership.

National Associations

This is not a comprehensive list. Inclusion on this list does not imply endorsement by the Minnesota Department of Health.

  • American Public Health Association (APHA)
    APHA is one of the oldest and largest public health professional organizations. APHA claims over 50,000 members, from over 50 occupations of public health from throughout the world. There are 24 discipline-based sections and seven special primary interest groups you can join.
  • American Association for Health Education (AAHE)
    The AAHE serves health educators and other health professionals by developing standards, resources, and services regarding health education. In addition, they develop national research priorities for health education and promotion; facilitate communication among members of the profession; and provide technical assistance in the creation of public health policy.
  • Society for Public Health Education (SOPHE)
    SOPHE is an independent, international professional association promoting healthy behaviors, healthy communities, and healthy environments through its membership. SOPHE has local chapters and provides leadership through a code of ethics, standard for professional preparation, research, and practice; professional development; and public outreach.

Minnesota Associations

This is not a comprehensive list. Inclusion on this list does not imply endorsement by the Minnesota Department of Health.

  • Minnesota Public Health Association (MPHA)
    MPHA is an affiliate of the American Public Health Association. MPHA is an interdisciplinary association that provides its members with continued education, networking, and other professional growth opportunities. MPHA has a strong policy and advocacy focus, involving members in monitoring, developing and promoting healthy public policy throughout Minnesota. Members have opportunities through leadership development and can join committees that focus on policy, communications, conference and other educational planning activities.
  • Minnesota Environmental Health Association (MEHA)
    MEHA is a professional association for environmental health practitioners in Minnesota aimed at promoting a standard of excellence for the profession. MEHA has over 300 members statewide and offers continued education especially focused on certification and registration of sanitarian/environmental health specialists. MEHA offers opportunities for professional networking and continues to promote the science of environmental health.