ACS & YOU
Get to Know the
American Chemical Society
As an undergraduate you are probably familiar with ACS student chapters, but you may not know much about or understand the Society as a whole. To help you to
make the most of your membership, we’ve included short
descriptions of the places and activities within ACS that will
be most useful to you, now and throughout your chemistry
As a member of ACS, you belong to a Congressionally chartered, independent membership organization that represents more than 164,000
professionals. Your fellow members include professionals at all degree
levels and in all fields of chemistry and sciences that involve chemistry.
The Society publishes numerous scientific journals and databases,
convenes major research conferences, and provides educational,
science policy, and career programs in chemistry. ACS also plays a
leadership role in educating and communicating with policy makers and the general public about the importance of chemistry in
our lives. This includes identifying new solutions, improving public
health, protecting the environment, and contributing to the economy. To learn more about ACS’s vision, mission, and core values,
go to www.acs.org/strategicplan.
ACS members play a key role in the Society by volunteering their
time and effort to enable the Society to provide the services to members and the public at large.
There are many ways to get involved at the local, regional, and
national levels, whether you are a student, just starting out in your
career, or a seasoned professional.
ACS Board of
The ACS Board of Directors and Officers is composed of the President,
the President-Elect, the
immediate Past President, District Directors
elected from each of
six geographic Districts,
and a non-voting Executive Director. The board is
responsible for administering
the funds, affairs, and property
of the Society. You may contact
the board to share your ideas and
concerns at email@example.com or at
ACS has 187 local sections throughout the United States. As an ACS
student member, you are also automatically a member of the local
section in the geographic area where your educational institution is
located. Local sections provide you with a home base, helping you and
your fellow chemists stay active and involved in your community. As
an active member in your local section, you can connect with other
chemists and participate in community outreach and other efforts to
educate your community about chemistry. Find out more about your
local section at www.acs.org/localsections.
The ACS president is recognized as a spokesperson
for the chemical profession. Elected by ACS members,
each ACS president serves a three-year presidential succession,
first as President-Elect of the Society, then as President, and
finally as Immediate Past President. Each ACS President also
develops his or her own set of goals with corresponding tasks and
events while serving as the Society’s primary spokesperson and
representative. The current ACS President is Marinda Li Wu. Learn
more at www.acs.org/acspresidents.
Each technical division is field-specific, and provides you with a ready-made forum for networking and scientific collaboration within your
specialty area. ACS division membership provides a unique way for you
to make the ACS your society and for tailoring programs and activities to meet your particular professional concerns. There are currently
32 different technical divisions, and the first year of membership in
an ACS division is free. You can find a list of divisions, as well as other
details, at www.acs.org/divisions.
The Council is composed of Society officers and voting Councilors
elected by local sections and divisions. Members include the ACS
Board of Directors and Officers, District Directors, Directors-at-Large, and the Executive Director. The Council meets at each ACS
national meeting to approve changes to the society’s bylaws. In
addition to performing duties laid out in the Constitution and
Bylaws of the ACS, the Council acts as an advisory body in matters related to the general management of the Society.
ACS committees are responsible for governance and oversight of
the Society’s programs, products, and services. Currently, there
are more than 40 committees, including the Younger Chemists,
Professional Training, Community Activities, and Chemical Safety
committees. Learn more at www.acs.org/committees.
inChemistry • www.acs.org/undergrad