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.

Questions? Text “Student Fellow” to (407) 307-2634

The Academy has created a new student community designed to provide support for the Student Fellowship program via text messaging. Text us any questions you may have (your message will only be seen by Academy staff) and we will respond via text.

This will be the main and fastest method of communication regarding the Student Fellowship program, so please be sure to opt-in ASAP so you don’t miss any updates!

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  • You must be a current OD student (graduation date 2022 or later)
  • You must be registered for Academy 2021 Boston to participate
  • You must not have previously earned Student Fellowship.
  • Residents, PhD students, and graduate students are not eligible to participate

Student Fellowship program progress will be managed entirely by the student using the online Student Fellowship submission portal. You will need to log in with your Academy member credentials and complete all fields as directed. Review the portal carefully as some requirements have multiple components required in order to receive credit. 



Each requirement below must be completed as specified below. No substitutions unless otherwise noted. All items must be noted and logged in the Student Fellowship portal by Friday, December 10

1. Attend six hours of any general 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 two of any poster (POS) or paper (P) sessions of your choosing for a minimum of one hour each. 
  • Residents Day paper and poster sessions offered on Saturday, November 6 will count toward this requirement
3. Attend one of the following special sessions

  • SE-01 - Ezell Fellows Present - Wednesday, November 3 from 8 to 10 AM 
  • SE-02 - Plenary Session: A Conversation on Racial Bias and its Impact on Healthcare - Wednesday, November 3 from 10 AM to Noon
  • SE-07 - Monroe Hirsch Research Symposium: Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Clinical Practice - Thursday, November 4 from 10 AM to Noon
  • SE-08 - Joint AAO/AAOphth Symposium on Glaucoma - Friday, November 5 from 10 AM to Noon

4. Attend one Section or SIG Symposium (SS- courses)

5. Attend the Student and Resident Awards Lunch - Thursday, November 4 from Noon to 1 PM

6. Attend one hour of the Residency and Graduate Program Fair - Friday, November 5 from Noon to 2 PM

7. Attend one hour of the exhibit hall (exhibit hours noted below)

  • Wednesday, November 3 from 5:00 to 7:30 PM
  • Thursday, November 4 from 9:30 AM to 6:30 PM
  • Friday, November 5 from 9:30 AM to 3 PM


Frequently Asked Questions

Q. I can't attend Academy 2021 Boston. Can I complete Student Fellowship virtually?
A.The Academy will be holding a virtual "Best of Academy 2021 Boston" meeting in December 2021 (date and education schedule TBA). Students interested in Student Fellowship may begin working Requirement #1 of 6 CE hours during this meeting and complete the outstanding requirements during Academy 2022 San Diego.

Please note, you MUST be enrolled as an OD student the time of the San Diego meeting to complete the Student Fellowship program at that time.

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 the mobile app or on the Education Grid, 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 2022 San Diego (provided you will still be an OD student at the time of the 2022 meeting).  

Q. Will I receive one hour of CE for attending half of a two hour lecture?
A. CE credit will not be awarded if you do not attend the full session. There is no partial credit for attending one hour of a two hour lecture and this will not count toward Student Fellowship.

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 San Diego 2022. This code must be used for the San Diego meeting and cannot be transferred or deferred. You will receive an email with your complimentary registration code shortly before Academy 2022 San Diego registration opens. 

Q. When will my new Student Fellow certificate and pin arrive?
A.Your certificate and pin will be mailed to your Faculty Liaison in January 2022. 

Q. I attended the Thursday Poster session for two hours. Does this satisfy requirement 2?
 A. No. You must attend two separate scientific paper or poster sessions for one hour each to complete this requirement.