Feb 26, 2024  
2012-2013 Graduate Catalog 
    
2012-2013 Graduate Catalog [Not Current Academic Year. Consult with Your Academic Advisor for Your Catalog Year]

Scholarships and Financial Aid: College of Optometry


Colleges  > College of Optometry  > Scholarships and Financial Aid: College of Optometry

 


Before pursuing a degree in Optometry, students must consider a sound financial plan for their educational expenses early in their decision-making process. Financial assistance may or may not meet all of the student’s expenses. Eligible students will be awarded as much financial assistance as possible but not beyond their cost of attendance (budget). All financial aid awards are based on information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) needs analysis form. Students are strongly encouraged to apply on the FAFSA website, in early January each year. Priority application deadline is March 1st. The University of Houston school code is 003652. Financial aid will not be awarded until the Student Aid Report is on file at the University.

The University and the College of Optometry provide a variety of financial assistance programs for eligible students who need financial assistance beyond their resources in order to meet their cost of attendance expenses. For your convenience, a financial aid counselor is available within the College of Optometry. All necessary applications and forms are available at this office. The financial aid office may be reached at (713) 743-2048.

Many of the financial aid programs are funded either by governmental agencies or sponsoring individuals and organizations and therefore may be changed or eliminated at any time. Financial assistance programs available through the College of Optometry at the present time are listed below. All aid programs are subject to the rules and regulations of the U.S. Department of Education, the university’s Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid and the College of Optometry Scholarship and Financial Aid Committee.

For more information on scholarships and financial aid, refer to the General Information section of this catalog. 

Awards and Scholarships

Students interested in applying for any scholarship should contact the chair of the UHCO Scholarship Committee or the UHCO financial aid office at (713) 743-2048. Every scholarship will have different requirements, deadlines and application forms. Current information is also posted in the Scholarship Bulletin Board in the UHCO student lounge. The UHCO Scholarship Committee will meet as necessary to review all scholarship applications. Scholarship information will also be provided by e-mail from the Scholarship Committee and/or the financial aid advisor.

Listed below are the scholarships currently available at the UHCO. Where the award amount varies, award will either be cash, vision care products, plaques or a combination thereof. 

Scholarships Currently Available 

Fourth-Year Students:

Alcon Laboratories Excellence Award
Award given to one student who submits the best case report based on the essay guidelines. UHCO submits only one essay to Alcon. Award is $1,000.

David J. Kerko Low Vision Award
Award given to a student who has demonstrated excellence in vision care as determined by the rehabilitative vision faculty. Award is a set of Corning filters.

COVD Award for Excellence
Awarded to a student who has demonstrated excellence in vision therapy as determined by the pediatric faculty. Award is a plaque.

David J. Kerko Low Vision Award
Award given to a student who has demonstrated excellence in vision care as determined by the rehabilitative vision faculty. Award is a set of Corning filters[R2] .

Dr. Robert Zipper Memorial Leadership Award
Presented during commencement. Award recognizes student involvement and leadership over a four-year period. Award is $500.

Dr. Seymour Galina Grant
This is a national award given in the fall semester by the American Optometric Association (AOSA) to a student who submits the best essay on a given topic. Student must be a member in good standing of AOSA. UHCO submits only one essay for AOSA consideration. Award is $2,500.

Marchon Eyewear Practice Management Award
Presented to one fourth year student who is outstanding clinically and demonstrates excellent dispensing skills in practice management. Award is $500.

Ocular Instruments Award of Excellence
Presented to a student who has demonstrated outstanding performance in the area of ocular disease as determined by the clinic faculty. Award is a certificate redeemable for his/her choice of listed ocular diagnostic lenses valued from $250 to $295.

Dr. Robert Zipper Memorial Leadership Award
Presented during commencement. Award recognizes student involvement and leadership over a four-year period. Award is $500.

Dr. Seymour Galina Grant
This is a national award given in the fall semester by the American Optometric Association (AOSA) to a student who submits the best essay on a given topic. Student must be a member in good standing of AOSA. UHCO submits only one essay for AOSA consideration. Award is $2,500

UHCO Clinical Excellence Award
Determined by a vote of the clinical faculty in the different specialty areas: Cornea and Contact Lens, Pediatrics, Grand Rounds and New Developments Case, Low Vision, Optics, Primary Care, and Neuro-Ophthalmology Service. Award is $500.

Vision Service Plan Award
Awarded to two students who have demonstrated excellence in primary care and are committed to entering the independent practice of optometry. Award is $2,000

Vistakon Acuvue Eye Health Advisor Student Citizenship Scholarship
Awarded to a student who best exemplify ideal eye care standards of practice (a) the importance of eye health; (b) proper contact lens wear and care; (c) community service and volunteerism. Award is $1,000 and a plaque.

Vistakon Award of Excellence in Contact Lens Patient Care
Awarded to a student who has demonstrated knowledge of contact lenses as well as outstanding patient care as indicated by the skillful, considerate, and professional care of those patients entrusted to the student. Award is $1,000.

Vision Service Plan Award
Awarded to two students who have demonstrated excellence in primary care and are committed to entering the independent practice of optometry. Award is $2,000.

William Feinbloom Low Vision Award
Award given to one fourth year student who is outstanding clinically in the area of low vision. Award is a package of low vision equipment. 

Third-Year Students:

AOA Student Leadership Award
Presented to a student who has demonstrated leadership roles and student government involvement. The student must be a member in good standing with the AOSA and AOA. The student must submit an essay on a given topic and one page resume. Award is $1,000.

Avalon Excellence Eyewear Award
Must have excellent optic and dispensary skills. Demonstrated unmet financial aid need. Selection is made by the Optics faculty, Dispensary staff and the Scholarship & Financial Aid Committee. Award: 1 recipient for $1,000.

Bausch & Lomb Contact Lens Clinical Excellence Award
Recipient must have demonstrated exceptional knowledge in contact lens an ocular anatomy. Selection by faculty. Award: 1 plaque.

Mike Hammond, O.D. Memorial Scholarship
Given to a student who excels in his/her academic performance and plans on practicing in the North area of Texas. Award is $500.

Patrick Everett Cummings Memorial Scholarship
Applicant must be a member in good standing with the American Optometric Association (AOA). Must have good academic standing. Must submit a resume’ and UHCO Student Data Sheet along with an essay on a selected topic. Finalist will be selected by the Scholarship & Financial Aid Committee to be submitted to the National Competition. Award: 1 national award given to one optometry school for $3,000.

SOLA Quest Scholarship
Given to a student who has demonstrated the best in ophthalmic optics knowledge and skills, along with superior understanding of the application of appropriate materials for individual patients. Award is $500.

Vision Quest Scholarship
Presented to a student who has demonstrated academic performance in anatomy, ocular disease and pharmacology, excellence in clinical skills, patient skills, and leadership skills. The student must be a Texas resident. Award is $2,000.

Vision Care Outstanding Clinic Award
Awarded to the best third year clinician selected by the clinic faculty. Award is $1,000.

Dr. William E. White/Class of 1969 Exemplary Clinician Award
Presented to two students who have been identified as being the most helpful by the clinical service staff. Award is $1,000. 

Third- or Fourth-Year Students:

American Foundation for Vision Awareness-Texas Chapter Given to a student who submits the best essay on a given topic. Student must be in good academic standing. Award is $1,000. Association of Schools & Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) Student Award in Clinical Ethics.

All ASCO optometry schools are eligible. Applicant must submit a 1,500 word essay on a selected topic. Final selection will be made by ASCO. Award: 1 national award for $1,000 along with a plaque.

Cooper Vision Excellence in Cornea and Contact Lens Award
Recipient will have demonstrated exceptional knowledge in contact lens and ocular anatomy. Selected by faculty. Award: 1 plaque.

Edith Greeman-Glennetta Riley Scholarship
Awarded to a female optometry student who submits the best essay on a given topic. The student must be in good academic standing. Award is $1,000.

FERV “Eye Open” Professional Scholarships
Presented to a student who as demonstrated exceptional involvement with UHCO activities community service. Award is $1,000.

GP Lens Institute Clinical Excellence Award
Awarded to one OPTO IV and one OPTO III student who have been selected by the CL faculty to be outstanding with GP fitting. Award is a GP fitting set and plaque.

Metro Optics Contact Lens Excellence Award
Awarded to one OPTO IV and one OPTO III student who have demonstrated exceptional skills in GP fitting. Award is $500.

Texas State Optical Scholarship
Awarded to a student who submits the best essay on a given topic. The student must be in good academic standing and submit two letters of recommendation. Award is $1,500.

Varilux Student Grant Award
Awarded to a student who submits the best essay on a patient fit with Varilux lenses. Award is $1,000. Second- or Third-Year Students. 

Second-, Third-, or Fourth-Year Students:

Dr. Albert Love Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to a student in good academic standing who has demonstrated strong leadership skills and dedicated to the profession of Optometry. Award is $500.

Beta Sigma Kappa (BSK) Scholarship
Applicants must have a GPA of 3.30 or better. Applications are available from BSK officers or sponsors. Selection made by the BSK committee. Award is $500.

Mr. Dan Penick and Dr. Hugh A. Sticksel Jr. Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to a student who has demonstrated excellent citizenship qualities. The student must be in good academic standing. Award is $1,000.

Dr. Hugh A Sticksel Senior Memorial Scholarship
Awarded to a student who has demonstrated scholarship, high professional and ethical standards, and leadership while at the college of optometry. Award is $500.

Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award
Presented to a student who has been identified by the faculty to be an excellent teaching assistant. Award is $500.

Dr. Troy Fannin Scholarship
Presented to a student who has demonstrated excellence in ophthalmic optics as determined by the optics faculty. Award is $500.

Wal-Mart Optical Division Educational Scholarship
Applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 or better and demonstrate financial need. Award is $1,000. 

First-, Second-, Third-, or Fourth-year Students:

Dr. Berger and Dr. Spitzberg Service Award
Awarded to a student who has demonstrated outstanding participation in vision screenings, community service and volunteer type activities. The student must be in good academic standing. Award is Focometer.

Dr. Michelle Black and Dr. Connie Beaulieu Memorial Scholarship
Given to a female Texas resident who has demonstrated outstanding leadership qualities and exceptional dedication to her peers and the profession. The student must be from the panhandle of Texas and have a minimum GPA of 3.0 or better. Award is $1,000.

National Optometric Student Association Award NOSA)
Student must be in good standing in NOSA. Minimum GPA: 2.5. Submit an essay on a selected topic. Selection will be made by the UHCO Scholarships & Financial Committee. Award: 2 recipients at $375 each.

Optometric Student Association (OSA) Image Award
Presented to a student who has demonstrated outstanding dedication to the profession of optometry as voted on by the OSA committee. The student must be a member in good standing with the OSA. Award is $500.

Seymour R. Marco Foundation Scholarship
Awarded to a student who has demonstrated exceptional involvement with student organizations at the college of optometry. The student must be in good academic standing. Award is $500.

Student Texas Optometric Association Scholarship
Applicants with a high level of service related activities will be considered. The student must be a member in good standing with the STOA and submit an essay on the topic selected. Award is $500.

UHCO Scholarships:
Scholarships are available based on GPA and financial need. Number of recipients and dollar amounts per scholarship are dependent on fund availability. Scholarships are awarded to incoming first year, second-,third-, fourth-year candidates as well. Selections are made by the UHCO scholarship committee.

Incoming UHCO optometry student scholarships:
Scholarships for incoming optometry students are based on the demonstration of excellence in the student’s perspective undergraduate performance, supportive faculty letters of recommendation, community service and extracurricular service and dedication to the profession of optometry. The current prestigious scholarships for incoming students include:

Benedict Scholarship - 10 available per year.

Graduate / Professional Fellowships - availability is based on the University of Houston funding. 

All Optometry Students:

Residents of Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska and North Carolina may be eligible for tuition assistance from their state through a contract. Information may be obtained from the financial aid counselor at the college.

UHCO Scholarships Based on Financial Need and GPA; number of recipients and dollar amounts per scholarship are dependent on fund availability. Currently, scholarship awards are $1,000 per recipient ($500 Fall & $500 Spring). Scholarships are available to incoming first-year as well as beginning second-, third-, and fourth-year candidates. Selections are made by the UHCO Scholarship Committee for the following
scholarships:

  1. Better Vision
  2. O.W. Coburn
  3. A.D. Love
  4. W.J. Khulman
  5. Harry Jankiewicz
  6. Optometry License Renewal 

Federal Student Loan Programs

Perkins Loan Program; this is a Federal Loan Program. Maximum is $4,000 per academic year with a fixed interest rate of 5%. Repayment and interest begin 9 months after last date of full-time enrollment. Funds are very limited - early applications are encouraged.

There are no loan applications for the Perkins loan. Applicants who complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid are eligible for the Perkins loan. Early applicants may be given first consideration for these loans. The early financial aid deadline is March 1st.

Federal Stafford Loan Programs

Federal Subsidized Stafford Loan; the borrowing limit for any given year is based on the student’s estimated cost of attendance less expected family contribution. Information of this nature is available in the Student Aid Report received after completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Current annual loan limit is $8,500 for graduate students for a maximum of $65,500, including undergraduate borrowed amounts. For 2006/2007, a fixed interest rate of 6.8% will be in effect for all Stafford loans (subsidized and unsubsidized). The Federal government pays the interest while the student is enrolled in school.

Federal Unsubsidized Stafford Loan; these loans are for students who (1) if eligible, require additional funds or (2) show no financial need based on information provided on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) needs analysis form i.e. their Expected Family Contribution  (EFC) is higher than their financial aid budget. The total current nine month limit is 38,500 less any subsidized loans. Interest rate and repayment terms are the same as for the Subsidized Stafford loan. The total amount of Stafford loans a student may borrow is $189,125 including undergraduate borrowed amounts. Students are cautioned to use this loan program only when needed as the Federal government does not pay the interest while the student is in school. The student must elect either to: (1) have the interest added (capitalized) to the amount borrowed or (2) make quarterly interest payments while enrolled.

Loan Fees:

Loan fees for the Stafford loans are deducted prior to disbursement to the student. Presently, a three percent origination fee may be deducted and paid to the Federal government. Total Stafford Loan debt allowed for graduate or professional students is $189,125, i.e., $65,500 in Subsidized and $123,625 in Unsubsidized Stafford Loans. The graduate debt limit includes loans received for undergraduate study.

Students should keep in mind that the nine-month maximum loan eligibility for each grade level is $38,500. Students should borrow only what they need. The only financial assistance available in the summer is Stafford loans and private loans.

Other loan programs:

State Optometric Association Awards: many state Optometric associations and auxiliaries have loan or grant programs for resident students. To apply, contact you state optometric association.