Delta Omega is the national honorary society for graduate studies in public health. The society was founded in 1924, when only a few graduate schools of public health existed in the United States, and now has more than 80 active chapters at accredited schools providing advanced public health degrees.
In 1984, the Pitt Public Health Omicron Chapter of Delta Omega was established. New members are inducted each year from three groups: students who are candidates for a graduate degree in public health, faculty members at the school of public health, and alumni actively engaged in public health work. Election from all three groups is based on outstanding performance—scholarship in students, teaching and research in faculty members, and community service in alumni.
Election to membership in Delta Omega is intended, not only to recognize merit, but also, to encourage further excellence in, and devotion to, public health work.
Since Delta Omega’s establishment in 1924, the meaning and scope of public health has broadened tremendously. While it is still concerned with problems of environmental sanitation and communicable disease control, public health action has come to embrace all aspects of health and disease in populations. These include the planning, organization, and support of health promotion, disease prevention, and medical care. Basic to modern public health are the social sciences as well as the natural sciences—both in the United States and internationally.