The most important decision of your life.
Here, you’re not alone on your journey to becoming an optometrist and choosing an optometry school. At NECO, you’ll find faculty, staff, and peers who are as invested in your success as you are.
The opportunities here at NECO are endless. Only two weeks into classes, we have the opportunity to practice our skills working in different settings – elementary schools, pediatrics, Headstart programs, and even global communities!
To have such an uplifting and welcoming group of people guide you while making one of the toughest and most influential decisions of your life is most definitely a stress reliever. Aside from the academics, this was by far what made NECO stand out to me.
I felt the sense of community at NECO before ever stepping foot on campus. The camaraderie of my classmates and support from faculty make this school feel like a family.
As a first-generation student, I’m passionate about inclusion, community care, and creating an example for future generations. I believe that NECO is a place where my authentic self will be reflected and respected.
Our Doctor of Optometry Program
Become a competent, compassionate optometry professional. Our four-year OD is our most popular academic program, where you can tailor your experience to your career goals, including a dual degree and concentration options.
NECO has 500 students across its multiple degree programs.
3 concentrations to consider.
Pediatric Optometry, Low Vision Rehabilitation, Cornea & Contact Lens.
4 years of clinical experience.
Hands-on experience starting within the first few weeks in your first year.
Additional Degree Programs
NECO also offers accelerated, international, and dual-degree programs, as well as a Master of Science in Vision Science.
A rich history of advancing the future of eye care.
New England College of Optometry has been an innovator in eye care education since 1894. Learn about us and our history.
Innovative Clinical Training & Technology
Learn from forward-thinking faculty members and gain experience with the latest technological advances in optometry.
Strong Network of Student Support
A close-knit community like NECO means personalized attention and access to plenty of resources and services that will help you succeed.
Living & Learning in Boston
From the small, family feel of our intimate, historic campus to all that the thriving Boston region has to offer, you’ll find plenty of ways to get involved and grow professionally at NECO.
Community-based. Expansive. Cross-cultural.
Diverse partnerships mean diverse experiences. NECO’s collaboration with community health centers, industry innovators, and more than 50 clinical training sites give our students rich, real-world learning experiences.
NECO Center for Eye Care
Comprehensive and compassionate patient care is at the heart of the NECO optometry school experience. Working alongside licensed optometrists, our highly skilled students provide primary eye care and specialty services to people of all ages.
The NECO Center for Eye Care encompasses two teaching facilities: Commonwealth Avenue and Roslindale. It is one aspect of our larger network of training opportunities throughout the region.
NECO Center for Eye Care is one of the most comprehensive eye centers in New England, offering standard and specialty services. These include low vision rehabilitation, myopia control, contact lens services, and vision therapy. As a student, you have the opportunity to learn alongside experts in these areas.
Community Partners and Outreach
When Massachusetts opened its first community health clinic, NECO was there. In the decades since, we’ve provided much-needed access to eye care for residents of Boston and beyond — while providing valuable learning experiences to the next generation of optometrists.
Increasing Eye Care Access
In addition to community health clinics, we serve a range of organizations. These include public schools, VA hospitals, homeless shelters, and low vision centers.
treated across nine area clinics in one year. Our clinical model enhances access to eye care across the region.
Clinical Affiliations & Externship Sites
In your final year, you’ll provide full-time patient care through four faculty-supervised externships: community health, ocular disease, specialty care, and an elective of your choice.
Train in Boston and Beyond
Complete your rotations within our regional clinical network; nationally across 30 states; or at partner sites in China, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
Find Your Focus
You can complete rotations in pediatrics, vision therapy, and specialty contact lenses. Electives could take you to Indigenous health centers in Alaska and New Mexico, military clinics in Virginia and Rhode Island, or academic medical centers in the U.S. and abroad.
From beta testing emerging equipment to taking part in research, students benefit from the Innovation Center’s collaboration with industry partners to advance the field.
I never knew what an individualized and intimate educational community was like until I came to NECO. All of the faculty and staff I have interacted with have been kind, helpful, and genuinely invested in my unique journey towards becoming a doctor.
- Class Year 2025
- Hometown Columbia, SC
As a doctor of optometry, you see the difference you make in people’s lives every day. One of the most flexible and fulfilling areas of healthcare, optometry is an in-demand, well-paying field.
Optometry offers a good living—and increased earning potential for practice owners and specialists.
U.S. News & World Report ranks optometrist among the top 20 healthcare jobs in America for quality of life, pay, and future growth.
Flexible and Versatile
As an OD, you can work in a range of settings: hospital or private practice; education or industry.
We offer many ways to explore NECO. Start with a virtual tour or consultation with our Admissions staff. You can also schedule a Q&A with a current student to learn more about the community of support, clinical training, and academic rigor at NECO.
Highlights & Happenings at NECO
In 2022, New England College of Optometry recognizes 50 years of training students and serving patients in community health centers throughout the region. As the first optometry school to conceive and create such a clinical training model, NECO has influenced thousands of optometrists and optometry itself. Here’s the story of how it all began.