"Be worthy to serve the suffering."

-William W. Root, MD - Founder, 1902


Alpha Omega Alpha, founded in 1902, is the national medical honor society. Its mission is:

Alpha Omega Alpha — dedicated to the belief that in the profession of medicine we will improve care for all by:

  • recognizing high educational achievement;
  • honoring gifted teaching;
  • encouraging the development of leaders in academia and the community;
  • supporting the ideals of humanism; and
  • promoting service to others.

Election to Alpha Omega Alpha is an honor signifying a lasting commitment to professionalism, leadership, scholarship, research, and community service. A lifelong honor, membership in the society confers recognition for a physician’s dedication to the profession and art of healing.

More than 4,000 students, residents/fellows, faculty, and alumni are elected each year. Since its founding in 1902, nearly 200,000 members have been elected to the society.

Alpha Omega Alpha supports 13 fellowships, grants, programs, and awards for medical students and physicians at its 135 Chapters, and publishes a quarterly peer-reviewed, medical humanities journal The Pharos which contains articles on nontechnical medical subjects, including history, ethics, national issues, personal essays, and poetry.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Statement

Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society (AΩA) is committed to improving diversity, equity, and inclusion based on evidence that inclusion of talented individuals from different backgrounds benefits patient care, population health, education, research, and scientific discovery. 

AΩA will continue to work to overcome bias – implicit/unconscious bias – as well as discrimination at all levels throughout the organization. 

AΩA values a diverse, fair, and equitable work and learning environment for all. It supports the medical profession in its work to achieve a welcoming, diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment in teaching, learning, caring for patients, and collaboration. 

AΩA advocates for diversity in all of its forms – identity, cultural, geographic, experiential, race, ethnicity, gender, age, economic and social status, physical abilities, aptitude, and religious beliefs, political beliefs, and other ideologies. 

AΩA is committed to working with its members, Chapters, medical schools, residency programs, and health organizations to improve diversity, equity and inclusion within the organization and throughout the medical profession.

No candidate shall be denied election to AΩA because of ageracecolor, ethnicity, national origin, sex, pregnancy status, gender, identity or expression, sexual orientation, language, physical or mental disability, marital, civil union or domestic partnership status, veteran status, socioeconomic status, religious or political beliefs, or any other characteristic protected by the laws of a state, province, territory, or nation. 

AΩA supports and promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion among its Officers and Board and in its programs and awards including: race, ethnicity, gender, geography, academia, community, organizations, institutions, specialties and professional activities. 

Based on AΩA’s core principles of professionalism, leadership, education, scholarship, and service, the primary criteria for fellowships, grants, and awards will be distinction, excellence, and achievement(s). 

This statement applies to membership in the society, as well as all programs, awards, personnel, and all other AΩA functions. 

Ethics Statement

The Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society Ethics Statement describes our guarantee to support a culture of openness, trust, and honesty in all that we do.

AΩA employees must uphold the highest standards of ethical and professional behavior.

AΩA employees are expected to conduct all organizational-related business dealings and undertakings with the highest standards of ethical conduct.

AΩA employees dedicate themselves to carrying out the mission of the organization and shall:

1. Act in such a manner as to uphold and enhance personal and professional honor, integrity, and the dignity of the organization.

2. Treat with respect and consideration all persons, regardless of age, race, color, ethnicity, national origin, sex, pregnancy status, gender, identity or expression, sexual orientation, language, physical or mental disability, marital, civil union or domestic partnership status, veteran status, socioeconomic status, religious or political beliefs, or any other characteristic protected by the laws of a state, province, territory, or nation.

3. Effectuate AΩA’s mission with respect, concern, courtesy, responsiveness, and in a professional manner.

4. Collaborate with, and support, members, Councilors, co-workers and other professionals in carrying out AΩA’s mission.

5. Serve the best interests of AΩA’s constituency at all times.

6. Conduct organizational and operational duties with positive leadership exemplified by open communication, creativity, dedication, and compassion.

7. Demonstrate the highest standards of personal integrity, truthfulness, honesty, and fortitude in all activities of AΩA.

8. Avoid any interest or activity while at work that is in conflict with the conduct of AΩA’s official duties.

9. Respect and protect privileged information in the course of official duties.

10. Strive for personal and professional excellence, and encourage the professional developments of others.