For questions about the Student Fellowship program please contact Kayla Ritten at

The Academy offers the Student Fellowship program to encourage students to experience the entire meeting, hoping that it will stimulate improved integration of all of the opportunities offered at the meeting, encourage future involvement, and persuade students to become Fellows upon graduation.

The Student Fellowship program is a great opportunity for students to engage in cutting edge knowledge and technology through lectures, workshops, posters and much more! The program is geared to guide students to develop their skills as an optometric or vision science professional.

Student Fellowship Requirements

You must be a current OD student with a graduation date of 2022 or later and a Student Member of the Academy to participate. Residents, PhD students and graduate students are not eligible to participate. You are not eligible to participate if you have completed the Student Fellowship program in the past.  You must be registered for Academy 2021 Boston. 

Student Fellowship program progress will be managed entirely by the student using our new online submission portal. You will need to log in with your Academy member credentials and complete all fields as directed.

 2021 Student Fellowship Requirements will be updated and posted late Summer 2021. You can take a look at the 2020 requirements below to get an idea of how the program is structured. 

1. Attend 6 hours of any CE lectures of your choosing 

  • This includes any courses in the following topic areas: AS, BV, CL, GL, GO, LP, LV, JP, NO, OP, PH, PM, PO, PS, RS, SD, SP. 
2. Attend 2 of any poster (POS) or paper (P) sessions of your choosing (See Scientific Tracks on the Education schedule offered the first week of the meeting)^

  • Residents Day paper and poster sessions offered on Saturday, October 10 will count toward this requirement
3. Attend 1 of the following special sessions**

  • SE-02 Plenary Session: A New Look at Some Old Medical Guidelines - Wednesday, October 7 from 11 AM to 1 PM EST
  • SE-06 ASCO/NOA/AAO Joint Symposium on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion - Thursday, October 8 from 1 to 3 PM EST
  • SE-04 Monroe Hirsch Research Symposium: 2020 - The Future is Upon Us - Thursday, October 8 from 9 to 11 PM EST
  • SE-01 Ezell Fellows Present: 2020 - Advances in Clinical Imaging - Wednesday, October 14 from 5 to 7 PM EST
  • SE-08: Joint AAO/AAOphth Symposium: Update on the Assessment and Treatment of Age-Related Macular Degeneration - Monday, October 19 from 9 to 11 PM EST
4. Attend 1 Section or SIG Symposium** - See SS courses in Event Pilot.

5. Attend the Residency and Graduate Program Fair - Saturday, October 17, 4 to 7 PM** ^

6. Attend 1 hour of the exhibit hall - Access the exhibit hall 24 hours a day through Event Pilot. ^

**You may substitute the LDR-01 Fundamentals of Leadership: Part 1 Defining Leadership on Wednesday, October 7 from 1 to 4 PM for ONE of either requirement 3, 4 or 5.
Please note: LDR-01 is a paid addition to your registration and will cost $10 for students. You must register and pay prior to Thursday, September 24 to be admitted to the session. 

^Poster sessions, Residency and Graduate Program Fair, and Exhibit hall attendance will not show up on your CE Certificate after the meeting because these are No CE sessions. To get credit for these requirements be sure to answer all associated questions in the Student Fellowship portal.



Frequently Asked Questions

Q. The portal asks for the course ID of sessions attended. Where can I find this?
A. The course ID is the 3-5 digit code associated with a session in Event Pilot, i.e. AS-01, POS-01, P-02, etc.

Q. I want to participate in the Student Fellowship program but I am not a student member. How can I sign up?

A. Submit your application on our Student Membership page. There is a $30 membership fee that will cover your entire OD education as well as a year of residency. Please allow 1-2 business days for your application to be processed. 

Q. I missed a required session. Are there any additional substitutes?
A. There are no additional substitutions for any of the Student Fellowship requirements other than what is noted on the requirement list. Please note, you have 2 consecutive years to complete the Student Fellowship program. You can finish the remaining requirements next year at Academy 2021 Boston (provided you will still be an OD student at the time of the 2021 meeting).  

Q. I read that completing Student Fellowship will grant you complimentary registration for the next meeting. Where do I get my code?
A. All new Student Fellows will receive complimentary registration for the next Academy meeting in Boston 2021. This code must be used for the Boston meeting and cannot be transferred or deferred. You will receive an email with your complimentary registration code shortly before Academy 2021 Boston registration opens. 

Q. When will my new Student Fellow certificate and pin arrive?
A. Your certificate and pin will be mailed to your Faculty Student Liaison to distribute in January 2021.