OESP Program Overview
The Optometric Education Scholarship Program provides scholarship assistance to encourage eligible students to pursue a graduate degree in optometry.
The scholarship may be used to pay tuition and mandatory fees for two semesters, or three quarters in an academic year. The award amount determined by the institution, will be the lesser of $5,000 or tuition and mandatory fees.
A total of 10 scholarships will be awarded each year: two each for eligible applicants in their first year, second year, third year and fourth year; the remaining two may be awarded to students in any academic year. The total number of scholarships actually awarded in any given year is contingent upon available funding.
When the number of applicants exceeds the number of available scholarships, selection will be made based on a combination of the following criteria: cumulative grade point average, Expected Family Contribution (EFC) and renewal status.
Recipients of the Optometric Education Scholarship Program must agree to practice as a licensed optometrist for a period of not less than one year for each year of scholarship assistance received. If the recipient does not fulfill the requirement to practice optometry in Illinois, the scholarship converts to a loan and the recipient must repay the scholarship(s).