ST. LOUIS—The American Optometric Association (AOA) and American Optometric Student Association (AOSA) have extended the deadline for registration to receive AOA+ travel grants to March 31, 2023. The American Optometric Association (AOA) is the leading authority on and advocate for quality eye health care, representing more than 48,000 doctors of optometry, optometry students and optometric professionals. Travel grants are designed to ease the burden of traveling and attending Optometry’s Meeting, taking place June 21 to 24 in downtown Washington, D.C., at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

“After six years, the AOA+ experience will rejoin Optometry’s Meeting for another rare and immersive experience for all attendees,” said AOA president Ronald Benner, OD. “Based on the growing momentum of travel grant applications, we’re thrilled to extend the deadline. Optometry’s next generation is a powerful force and AOA+ will bolster their passion for this profession.”

As the profession’s premier annual event, Optometry’s Meeting aligns optometric and industry professionals for four days of progressive continuing education and professional development alongside impactful networking opportunities, business solutions and this year’s unique focus on professional advocacy in our nation’s capital.

The AOA+ travel grants are available to optometry students, faculty and new doctors up to five years post-graduation. Eligible students will also receive three nights of lodging for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of Optometry’s Meeting within the AOA’s housing block.

AOA+ Special Events and Programming AOA+ programming delivers a comprehensive experience for all optometry students, faculty and new doctors with opportunities for exploration into various professional interests and goals. Intersecting fun and professional collegiality Optometry’s Meeting is known for, AOA+ offers all attendees an engaging experience focused on career development, skill building, networking and advocacy.

Some of the programming happening during the event include:

AOA+ Rally and Affiliate Connections:
Kick off Optometry’s Meeting with the AOA+ Rally in support of the critical primary eye health and vision care. Hear from members of Congress and learn more about how you can become involved at the local level. After the rally, grab a bite to eat and network.

The AOA Experience and Opening Reception: Hear from AOA and AOSA leadership as well as a motivational and inspiring keynote. This event offers attendees the opportunity to network with colleagues, AOA leadership, the AOSA and state associations, as well as industry partners.

Addressing Mental Health in the Classroom: This interactive course for Optometric Educators is designed to discuss the many mental health challenges that students face, how to discuss these, references that can be made, and ways to help students cope with various stressors. The goal of the course is to create a sense of community and provide educators with new tools to identify and deal with areas of concern.

AOSA Optometry Student Bowl XXXII, Supported by EssilorLuxottica: College rivalries take center stage as optometry schools battle to be the smartest, loudest, and most creative in the 31st AOSA Optometry Student Bowl, powered by EssilorLuxottica. High-speed and high-stakes, this test of optometric knowledge pits one champion from each school against all others.

AOA+ Advocacy Workshop: Gain advocacy insight and hands-on experience for advocates of all experience levels. Learn the top insider tips and tricks for being the most effective advocate and building more momentum for AOA’s pro-access, pro-patient advocacy agenda.

AOA+ Residency Summit and Career Fair: The Residency Summit and Career Fair delivers opportunities to visit with residency directors from schools and colleges across the country, as well as meet with employers and industry leaders across the optometric spectrum to learn about countless job opportunities.

Celebration of Optometry: This evening to remember will feature networking, entertainment and a few surprises. Celebrate a successful Optometry’s Meeting with peers and colleagues at The Anthem.

Transportation, along with food and beverage, will be provided. Additionally, AOA+ offers student recommended courses that represent a broad variety of foundational topics and support the practice of contemporary optometry.

Optometry’s Meeting takes place June 21 to 24 in downtown Washington, D.C., at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. For more information on Optometry’s Meeting, visit