Optometrists do more than perform routine eye exams. They are on the frontline, providing eye and vision care, prescribing medications, vision therapy and surgical procedures. They diagnose and treat visual problems and manage diseases, injuries and other disorders of the eyes. Optometrists help individuals worldwide to have clear vision and maintain good eye health.
Students interested in attending optometry school should contact the Alvernia Pre-Professional Program Advisors as soon as possible upon enrollment at Alvernia. It is the responsibility of the student to research optometry schools in which they are interested. Optometry schools will have their own admission requirements, and students should take courses needed for those specific programs. The Alvernia Pre-Professional Program Advisors guide pre-optometry students to choose the best major and courses, so they have the best chance for acceptance to optometry schools.
For more information about the pre-optometry program, contact the Admissions Office (1-888-ALVERNIA or email@example.com) or reach out directly to:
Ondra Kielbasa, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Biology
610-230-5701 | Ondra.firstname.lastname@example.org
During their first year, students should talk to the Alvernia Pre-Professional Program Advisors about their plan to apply to optometry school. Faculty advisors help pre-optometry students choose the courses they need for application to post-graduate programs.
Pre-optometry students typically pursue an undergraduate degree in biology or biochemistry, but some optometry schools accept students who study different majors. Students who plan to apply to optometry programs should check with the schools to which they plan to apply to be sure they complete the required undergraduate coursework.
Most optometry schools require the following coursework for admission to a graduate program:
Chemistry: 2 Semesters
General Chemistry I
General Chemistry II
Organic Chemistry: 2 Semesters
Organic Chemistry I
Organic Chemistry II
English: 2 Semesters
Math: 2 Semesters
Biology: 2 Semesters
Principals of Biology I
Principals of Biology II
Physics: 2 Semesters
Psychology: 1 Semester
Some optometry schools require the following coursework for admission to a graduate program:
Anatomy and Physiology: 2 Semesters
A & P I
A & P II
Students entering the program with 70+ transferable credits or an associate degree must complete 30/31 Liberal Arts Core credits.
A total of 123 credits with 3 credits in a human diversity course are required to complete a Bachelor’s degree. To adhere to Franciscan values, community service hours are also required. In addition, at least 30 credits at the 300/400 level must be taken at Alvernia University.
Program requirements are subject to change. Contact your admissions counselor for the most up-to-date information.
Optometrists enjoy an independent career lifestyle and have skills they can use anywhere in the world. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of optometrists is projected to grow 10 percent from 2021 to 2031, faster than the average for all occupations. The median annual wage in 2021 was $124,300.
With hundreds of community connections in Greater Reading and beyond, pre-professional students can complete internships in a variety of healthcare settings. Recently, pre-professional students have complete internships with:
Carim Eye and Retina Center
Berkleigh Eye Care
St. Joseph Medical Center
Penn State College of Medicine Hershey
Eye Consultants of PA
Pre-Health Professions Club
The Pre-Health Professions Club provides a setting in which students working toward careers in health professions can share information, learn more about health professions, and develop friendships with students with similar interests. Past club activities include autopsy observations, health fairs, free health screening services and visits to local healthcare organizations.