Apr. 09 2019

Honorary Society Debuts at Columbia Mailman

Thirty Columbia Mailman School master’s students recently joined the ranks of the Delta Omega Honorary Society in recognition of their excellence in public health scholarship.

Founded by two graduate students in 1924, Delta Omega today counts 100 chapters and over 20,000 members throughout the United States, all who commit to protecting and advancing the health of all people.

It was another graduate student, Samuel Carter, who brought Delta Omega to Columbia Mailman. A year ago, at a global health conference, he struck up a conversation with James Cobey, the current leader of the national honor society, who sold him on the merits of opening a new chapter. Carter, who will soon earn an MPH in epidemiology, then worked with faculty and administration to make it happen.

Says Carter, “By establishing a Delta Omega chapter here at Mailman, I hope we are creating opportunities for our members to connect with chapters at other schools across the country. I also believe it will increase our ties with the APHA [American Public Health Association], and continue to build Mailmans national reputation as one of the countrys leading schools of public health.”

An induction ceremony on March 28 welcomed the new Delta Omega members, all of whom are within the top 10 percent of their graduating class. James Cobey was the keynote speaker.

Currently, the chapter is comprised of MPH and MHA students and may expand to include DrPH students in the future. Carter and six classmates on the executive student board plan member events and will work to identify distinguished faculty and alumni moving forward.

Membership has its privileges. Delta Omega members have the opportunity to attend society-wide annual meetings and poster sessions to enhance leadership and research skills and prep them for successful careers in public health. Members also strive to give back. On April 8, the honorary society chapter hosted a virtual food drive for the Columbia Pantry with donations accepted via smartphone. 

“I think this society is an excellent way to bring together passionate, hard-working people who can rely on one another for years to come,” says Delta Omega Member Noah Kreski, a master’s student in Epidemiology. “Many of the people inducted were familiar faces who I’ve admired for a while now. I look forward to seeing what they'll do in the future.”