Student Participation in Governance
Students are urged to participate in student government in the college and campus-wide. There are many opportunities at both levels. In the college, each class elects officers annually; a student represents the student body at meetings of the faculty; students serve on standing faculty committees; and a Dean’s Student Advisory Committee is selected by each class.
American Optometric Student Association (AOSA)
The AOSA mission is to improve the visual welfare and health of the public, to promote the profession of optometry, and to enhance the education and welfare of optometry students. AOSA is committed to this as well as enhancing the vision and ocular health of the public.
The AOSA represents more than 6,500 students attending the 23 schools and colleges of optometry throughout the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico. Each school has a unique AOSA chapter which works hard to raise thousands of dollars for community outreach and dedicates hundreds of hours in community service. Each school is represented on the AOSA Board by a Trustee and Trustee-Elect. These individuals have a deep passion for optometry and work to keep students informed about issues important to aspiring optometric physicians. Most importantly, these individuals work to be a channel of communication between the schools and the AOSA.
Student Texas Optometric Association (STOA)
STOA, an affiliated society of the Texas Optometric Association, was organized in an effort to keep students informed on issues affecting optometrists in Texas. Their goals include: working to ensure that each community in Texas has access to the highest quality eye care, continually providing Optometry students with up-to-date information regarding Legislation impacting Optometry’s scope of practice, and further strengthening the links between students and Optometrists in both academic and clinical settings. The STOA helps to spread the word about changes being made to the profession of Optometry and what we students can do to facilitate any changes that may need to be made in the future. STOA gives students a voice and a vote in determining action on the various issues and aids them in developing a close relationship with Texas optometrists and their professional society.
Membership in the STOA is open to students in all colleges of optometry.
National Optometric Students Association (NOSA)
The National Optometric Student Association is the student extension of the National Optometric Association and is a service organization dedicated to providing the delivery of effective and adequate eye care to the minority and under-served communities. In addition, NOSA creatively markets the field of optometry in an effort to increase recruitment and retention of under-represented minorities into the profession.
Student Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity (SVOSH)
The mission of the Student Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity (SVOSH) is to provide eye care services to all who need it, especially those who would not normally receive such care. Through vision screenings at the local level and eye prescriptions and eyeglasses at the international level, SVOSH is able to assist those patients in gaining access to the needed health care services.
Fellowship of Christian Optometrists (FCO)
The Fellowship of Christian Optometrists, International, Inc., founded in 1986, is a not-for-profit evangelical organization of Christian optometrists, optometry students, and allied ophthalmic personnel committed to worldwide eye care missions and intra-professional Christian fellowship.
Beta Sigma Kappa is the International Optometric Honor Society and their mission is to stimulate scientific attainment, academic excellence and the ethical practice of optometry; and to promote and provide financial support for worthy research projects relating to vision care and the eyes.
SOPMA’s mission is to provide optometry students with the education, resources, and confidence necessary to pursue their individual goals as optometric professionals and preserve the integrity of the profession.
The mission of the Optometric Student Association is to promote the profession of optometry to students and encourage high professional standards within the student body. The OSA is there for the students to help contribute to and enhance the educational experience of its members. The OSA serves as a liaison to the optometric profession at the local, state, and national level.