Frequently Asked Questions: EdAT

What Is EdAT?

The Education Advocacy Trust (EdAT) is a legal entity within the American Psychological Association’s (APA) companion organization, the American Psychological Association Practice Organization (APAPO) — a 501(c)(6) tax status organization. The mission of EdAT is to promote the mutual professional interests of psychologists in advancing education in psychology and psychology’s role in other areas of education through advocacy activities that cannot be conducted legally within the APA, an organization that is tax exempt pursuant to Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. 

Why is the EdAT necessary?

As a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, APA cannot legally engage in any form of political campaign activity — even for candidates who support our initiatives. However, in order to encourage members of Congress to champion the issues on our advocacy agenda, we must increase the visibility and influence of the psychology education and training community. Garnering champions in Congress is critical to efforts to expand on the Education Directorate’s earlier advocacy successes (i.e. Graduate Psychology Education funding through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Health Resources and Services Administration and the inclusion of psychologists in the National Health Service Corps), but it is extremely difficult to develop this level of support without the kind of coordinated effort allowed by a 501(c)(6) structure.

Is the Education Advocacy Trust a Political Action Committee (PAC)?

No. The Education Advocacy Trust is not a political action committee (PAC). APAPO-PAC is the political action committee (PAC) of the American Psychological Association Practice Organization (APAPO). Created in May 2012, APAPO-PAC is dedicated to supporting candidates for the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives who are friends of psychology.

Why Can't My APA Dues Be Used to Support Those Education Advocacy Efforts?

Since APA is a 501(c)(3) organization, it would be illegal for APA dues or funds to be used to support activities related to political campaigns, or to give funds to a 501(c)(6). EdAT must be supported independently of any APA funding. 

How is the Education Advocacy Trust Funded?

EdAT is supported by annual voluntary contributions from psychologists, faculty, researchers and students in the psychology community to a designated fund. 

Why Should I Contribute to EdAT?

Without your support the psychology education and training community’s efforts to build legislative support for quality psychology education, including the allocation of funds to federal grant programs that directly support psychology education, will continue to be hindered. In addition, access to key policymakers in an effort to promote psychology as an essential health profession and a STEM discipline will be limited, as Education Directorate staff cannot fully engage in the political process necessary to advance psychology’s agenda without this legal entity in place. 

Who Oversees the Education Advocacy Trust?

The activities of the Trust are overseen by its trustees, who are the members of APA’s Board of Educational Affairs. EdAT finances are overseen by the APAPO Treasurer.  

What Is the Relationship of the Education Advocacy Trust to APA?

Though EdAT is part of the APA’s companion organization, APAPO, it is staffed by members of APA’s Education Directorate staff. 

What is the Relationship of the Education Advocacy Trust to APAPO?

EdAT is a grantor trust of APAPO. Members of APA’s Board of Educational Affairs (BEA) serve as the administrative oversight group for the Education Advocacy Trust and report to the APAPO/APA Board of Directors. EdAT has a separate source of revenue and a separate bank account from that maintained for the Practice Assessment, and does not engage in activities that compete with APAPO for revenues.