SOPHE Chapters Region II
The Arkansas SOPHE Chapter is rebuilding with a focus on providing college students opportunities to actively engage with health professionals.
Currently, Arkansas SOPHE is planning its annual conference. The conference will be hosted by students on the campus of the University of Central Arkansas. All the schools in Arkansas are invited to participate and present during the student case competitions.
While the chapter focuses on professionals; they know that students ultimately benefit the most from networking and chapter membership.
“It is our responsibility to empower each other by magnifying the work our community contributes to igniting change and innovation in our ever-changing world.”
Arkansas SOPHE serves as the conduit for Arkansas organizations and public health professionals. The chapter is the liaison for professionals to obtain CEs at events which is a win-win for partnering organization and the chapter. It’s a great way to increase membership. It will also offer an opportunity to have more membership perks for joining Arkansas SOPHE.
“Leaders may come and go; but infrastructure and succession planning will continue to move the association in the right direction. It is imperative to have a plan in place to direct new leadership while influencing the current membership that Arkansas SOPHE is a valuable resource. There will always be motivated professionals that are interested in moving the needle and being a resource for health professionals.”
The Delta SOPHE Chapter has three times as many students as professional members. Several members are taking the lead to move the Jackson State University School of Public Health toward accreditation by the Council on Education for Public Health. It will be the first accredited school of public health in Mississippi among historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs).
“Communicate frequently. Keep everybody informed of chapter activities.”
The Florida SOPHE Chapter members are almost all national SOPHE members. They are active with local coalitions and co-sponsoring conferences with a focus on building and maintaining members.
“Help build sustainability in leadership to avoid volunteer burnout.”
The Georgia SOPHE Chapter is impacting the field of tobacco related policy by partnering with and promoting organizations across the state advocating for smoke-free environments.
This chapter is unique with an advisory board that provides insight into funding strategies and membership recruitment. The chapter is actively identifying ways to engage all levels of health education professionals to diversify membership (students, working professional, CHES/MCHES, retired professionals, and related professions).
The Illinois SOPHE Chapter partners with the Illinois Public Health Association. One of the many benefits of this partnership is extending the reach of chapter CE events.
The chapter is proud of its impact with the next generation of health education specialists — an anonymous donor enabled the chapter to provide three student scholarships.
“Be patient. Volunteer led boards are often challenged with limited capabilities. Be open minded and flexible in setting goals.”
“Be clear about responsibilities and roles, develop a team mentality and have fun! “
The Midwest SOPHE Chapter is new. During its first year, the chapter developed a partnership with the Kansas City Missouri Public Health Department, who is co-sponsoring their fall chapter meeting.
Currently, the chapter is focused on increasing membership and providing valuable opportunities for CEUs to improve the capacity of health education specialists.
Advice from a new chapter,
“Develop a partnership with your local public health department —they can advocate for the chapter, help build membership, and often secure meeting space
The North Carolina SOPHE Chapter is unique – it has more student members than practicing professionals. The chapter holds an annual meeting with speakers, breakout sessions and networking opportunities. They plan to regularly offer CHES credit webinars.
“Connections with colleges/universities is key. We’re working to establish and maintain those connections to infuse our chapter with youthful ideas and energy!”