The Royal Microscopical Society is pretty great. It is at heart, a professional society but is very inclusive and welcoming to any who would apply for membership. As an amateur, my membership with the RMS provides me with more than just a window into the world of professional microscopy. Apart from the tangible benefits such as membership in the European Microscopical Society and discounted access to microscopy related publications, it gives me the knowledge and satisfaction that I belong to a group that contributes materially to the advancement of microscopy and it’s enduring popularity. For more information on this excellent organization consult the RMS website.
There are of course a number of other clubs and societies centered around various areas of microscopy, but for me the RMS is the most compatible with my interests and desires. Although I make no use of the microscope in my professional life, I enjoy knowing that my membership dues help to support the continued growth and development of the scientists and students who do. Continuing research in broad areas facilitated and disseminated through the efforts of the RMS and its members contributes to the success of microscopists everywhere; from children peering for the first time at marvels in a drop of water with a dime-store light microscope, to the teams of researchers making the latest discoveries in integrated structural biology with a transmission electron microscope.