If you have ever considered joining an association, I would thoroughly recommend it. An association such as AMCA is a cooperative group, where competition and barriers can be removed. The collection of members is far greater than any one individual. It allows like-minded individuals to connect with peers, share ideas, experiences and learn best industry practices. Professional relationships can be forged, which really is a backbone for promoting growth within in any industry.
An association may hold several events and committees each year allowing for prime learning, networking, and discussion. The majority of associations will also hold an enormous wealth of information including white papers, books, and articles allowing you to expand your knowledge and improve in the area you have chosen to make a career.