SAAO New Chapter Information

Each osteopathic medical school accredited by the American Osteopathic Association's Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA), or pending accreditation, may organize a chapter of the Student American Academy of Osteopathy (SAAO).

Six or more students may organize an SAAO chapter. Students organizing a new chapter should elect five students to serve as SAAO chapter officers (president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, and national representative). All chapter officers must be SAAO members. Students should also select a faculty adviser for the chapter of the SAAO. The faculty adviser must be a member of the AAO, and he or she must be willing to attend meetings of the AAO Student Academies Committee, which is composed of the faculty advisers of each SAAO chapter and chaired by the adviser to the SAAO Executive Council (EC).  

Approval must be obtained from the following entities to establish an SAAO chapter: 

  1. The COCA-accredited osteopathic medical school, or the osteopathic medical school pending accreditation, at which the chapter of the SAAO will be established
  2. The AAO Student Academics Committee
  3. The AAO Board of Trustees
  4. The AAO Membership Committee


After the new SAAO chapter is established, the chapter president or national representative should contact the SAAO EC national coordinator ([email protected]) to obtain the most recent SAAO Chapter Notebook and SAAO Bylaws. Please confirm with the SAAO EC national coordinator that it is the most recent SAAO Chapter Notebook. SAAO chapter officers should read the SAAO Chapter Notebook and provide the following information to the SAAO EC national coordinator: 

  1. Confirmation of approval from the COCA-accredited osteopathic medical school, or pending accreditation, the AAO Student Academics Committee, the AAO Board of Trustees, and the AAO Membership Committee
  2. SAAO chapter officer list, including the following information for each SAAO chapter officer: name, position/office, address (street address, city, state, zip code), phone number and email
  3. The completed Terms of Agreement Form, which can be found in the SAAO Chapter Notebook

The SAAO EC national coordinator will create an SAAO chapter email account for the newly established SAAO chapter. This email account will be the primary means by which the SAAO EC will communicate with SAAO chapter leadership. Please ensure that the SAAO chapter President and National Representative have access to the email account, and that the login information is passed down to new SAAO chapter officers. 


Newly established SAAO chapters will be recognized and welcomed at the SAAO Board of Governors' meetings at the AAO Convocation. Two SAAO chapter officers are required to attend all SAAO Board of Governors' meetings at the AAO Convocation. It is highly recommended that the SAAO president and national representative attend. The SAAO Board of Governors' meetings serve as the SAAO’s annual business meeting, and they are also when elections are held for the SAAO EC.