I have a few favorites that come to mind. Often in the technology and engineering arena you find associations that are looking to push the boundaries. Two examples are
IEEE (with their numerous societies) and the
American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Both of these groups are pushing forward and having a global impact.
SMEI (Sales & Marketing Executives International, Inc.) is always looking for ways to push boundaries. They have experimented with different membership models and just recently launched SMEI-U. They are also very internationally minded. One example is their new educational partnership with
Ton Duc Thang University (TDTU) in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Several unique features of the program include - all students get a Business English class first, free membership in SMEI’s SocialLink - the exclusive online networking site for SMEI members where they can get mentorship and by the 3rd year of their 4-year program they are enrolled in the Certified Marketing Professional Course.
Many of the CPA societies are really making great strides in redefining their educational programs. While Elizabeth Weaver Engel, MA, CAE and I were writing our white paper – “The Association Role in the New Education Paradigm” we got the chance to interview staff from the Ohio Society of CPAs and the Maryland Association of CPAs. They are doing exciting work in their efforts to take a much more comprehensive look at what skills are missing in their members' workplace and retooling their programs to meet those needs.
Also, groups like the San Diego County Bar Association and the
Young Lawyer's Division of the American Bar Association are killing it and I think there are great things in the future for them both. :D