Student Fellowship Program
The Academy offers the Student Fellowship program to encourage students to fully experience the annual meeting, stimulate increased participation in the meeting’s events, promote future involvement in the Academy, and persuade students to become Fellows upon graduation.
The program also is a great opportunity for students to acquire new knowledge and exposure to the latest advancements in technology through lectures, workshops, posters, and more. It is designed to serve as a guide for students as they develop their skills as optometric or vision science professionals.
Eligibility for Academy 2023 New Orleans
To be eligible to attend this year’s Academy you must:
- Be a current OD student (graduation date 2024 or later)
- Register for Academy 2023 New Orleans
- Be a current student member of the Academy
- Residents, PhD students, and graduate students are not eligible to participate
Your Student Fellowship program progress will be managed entirely through the online Student Fellowship submission portal. Log in with your Academy member credentials and complete all fields as directed.
The Student Fellowship program closes Wednesday, November 8, at 5:00 pm ET.
- Attend six hours of any general CE lectures of your choosing. This includes courses in the following topic areas: TD (AS), CL, FV, GL, GO, GR, EJ, IS, LP, LV, NO, PB, PH, PM, PO, TD (PS), RS, SD, SP
- Attend two of any poster (POS) or paper (P) sessions of your choosing for a minimum of one-hour each. Residents Program paper and poster sessions also count toward this requirement
*Please note: Poster session attendance must be completed during live presentations from authors to receive credit. Live poster presentation sessions will be held:
- Thursday, October 12 from 4:30 to 6:30 PM in Exhibit Hall D
- Friday, October 13 from 1:00 to 3:00 PM in Exhibit Hall D
- Attend one of the following special sessions:
• SE-03 AAO/OGS Symposium – Wednesday, October 11 from 8:00 to 10:00 AM – Rm 252-254
• SE-04 Plenary Session – Wednesday, October 11 from 10:00 AM to Noon – LaNouvelle Orleans Ballroom BC
• SE-11 Monroe Hirsch Research Symposium – Thursday, October 12 from 10:00 AM to Noon – Rm 252-254
• SE-08 Joint AAO/AAOphth Symposium – Thursday, October 12 from 1:30 to 3:30 PM – Rm 252-254
• SE-13 Awards Ceremony and Prentice/Fry Lectures – Friday, October 13 from 8:00 – 10:00 AM – Ballroom C
- Attend one Section or SIG Symposium (SS- courses on the Education Grid)**
- Attend the Student and Resident Awards Lunch on Thursday, October 12 from Noon to 1:00 PM – Exhibit Hall F**
- Attend one hour of the Residency and Graduate Program Fair on Friday, October 13 from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM – Exhibit Hall F**
- Visit the exhibit hall for one hour. The exhibit hall is open during these hours:
- Wednesday, October 11: 5:00 to 7:00 PM
- Thursday, October 12: 10:00 AM to 6:30 PM
- Friday, October 13: 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM (Final Day)
All items must be completed as specified and logged in the Student Fellowship portal by Wednesday, November 8 at 5:00 pm ET. Some requirements will have additional questions to complete within the portal so please read through carefully. Results will be emailed to all participants in December 2023, with certificates distributed to your school in late January 2024.
** Requirement may be substituted for one of the volunteer substitution opportunities found here.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. How is my attendance tracked?
A. Your attendee badge is scanned with RFID technology when you attend the sessions listed above. 2-3 weeks post-meeting you will receive a digital CE certificate showing all education completed. Academy staff will also have access to event scan data to verify attendance for the non-education requirements.
Q. I missed a required session. Are there any additional substitutes?
A. There are no additional substitutions for the Student Fellowship requirements unless otherwise noted. Certain requirements with a ** may be substituted for volunteering in specific activities. Please see here for available opportunities, available on a first-come, first-served basis. Please note, that you have two consecutive years to complete the Student Fellowship program and may complete the remaining requirements at Academy 2024 Indianapolis (provided you will still be an OD student 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 three to five digit code associated with a session in the Academy.23 app or on the Education Grid, i.e., CL-01, POS-01, P-02, etc.
Q. Will I receive one hour of CE for attending half of a two-hour lecture for requirement 1?
A. No. CE credit will not be awarded if you do not attend the full session. The only sessions that offer partial credit are paper and poster sessions (requirement 2), which can be earned in 15-minute increments.
Q. I attended the Thursday Poster session for two hours. Does this satisfy Requirement 2?
A. No. You must attend two different scientific paper or poster sessions for one hour each to complete this requirement.
Q. I do not see the Student and Resident Lunch on my CE Certificate. How do I have this added?
A. The CE certificate will only display CE sessions. The Student and Resident Awards Lunch, Residency and Graduate Program Fair, and Exhibit Hall activities will not appear on this certificate as they are non-CE sessions. We will review your attendance records during our review process. Be sure to complete the associated questions in the Student Fellowship portal for each of these requirements.
Q. When will my Student Fellow certificate and pin arrive?
A. Your certificate and pin will be mailed to your Faculty Liaison in January 2024 to distribute. Complimentary Student Registration codes for Academy 2024 Indianapolis will be emailed in Spring 2024.
Q. I earned my Student Fellowship last year. Can I complete the program again?
A. While you are welcome to attend the sessions noted on this requirement list for your own enrichment, the Student Fellow status may only be achieved once.
There are three opportunities to substitute one Student Fellowship requirement (choose between Requirements 4, 5, or 6 on the requirement list) in exchange for volunteering with the Academy. Please see below for instructions to sign up for these opportunities. Please note, that these are available on a first-come, first-served basis. Note: While you may volunteer for multiple activities, only ONE substitution (A, B, or C below) may be used for Student Fellowship.
A) Fellows Doing Research (FDR) SIG Booth Project
Each year Academy’s Fellows Doing Research Special Interest Group (FDR SIG) conducts a research study in the exhibit hall. This year, the DESSRT Team will be evaluating the relationship between daily average smartphone screentime, working distance and digital eye strain severity. We are looking for volunteers to help us perform this study at the booth.
B) Education Room Monitors
The Lectures and Workshops Committee is looking for volunteers to serve as room monitors. As a room monitor, you will be stationed to monitor a designated lecture room. Your duties will include introducing speakers, monitoring CE attendance, and assisting the committee in other various tasks as needed. As compensation for your services, you will receive $12.50 per hour of work. Please note – 8 hours is the maximum hours you can sign up for, so $100 is the maximum compensation you can receive. If you have any questions, please contact EwaK@aaoptom.org.
Notes: A minimum of a 2-hour shift must be completed in full to earn the substitution credit for Student Fellowship. Your shift must be completed as listed on the sign-up form (no credit will be awarded if you sign up for a 4-hour shift and leave after only 2 hours).
Serving as a room monitor, regardless of the shift length, may only be counted for one Student Fellowship substitution. However, you are permitted to scan in/out for the sessions you monitor and receive CE credit for those sessions (i.e. if you are a room monitor for CL-01, you may scan in and out, and that session may be counted on your CE certificate for Requirement #1 – general CE attendance).
C) Admittance Exam Room Monitors
The Admittance Committee is in need of several students on Thursday, October 12 to help direct Candidates for Fellowship at the Hilton Riverside Hotel to and from their oral examination rooms. You will be stationed at a specific spot in the hotel and provide assistance to those looking for their room, finding a nearby restroom, and other directional guidance.
Sign up here: https://signup.com/go/HRiTxoN
Student Fellowship Text Messaging
The Academy supports and informs our student community via text messaging, which is our primary means of quickly communicating with students. Student Fellows can text any questions they may have and receive a response from a member of the Academy’s staff. Your texts will be seen only by a staff member. Send us your questions – text “Student Fellow” to (407) 307-2634.
Be sure to opt in ASAP, so you don’t miss any updates.