Student in sweater walking down tree lined street in the winter sun.

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.

Why NECO: Serving the Community

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!

headshot of man with beard
Hassam, Delmar, NY, Class of 2025
Why NECO: A Warm Welcome

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.

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Juliet, Rockaway Beach, NY, Class of 2025
Why NECO: A Sense of Belonging

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.

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Alexandra, Halifax, Canada, Class of 2025
Why NECO: Leading by Example

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.

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Emely, Class of 2025

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.

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.

Students in two exam lanes testing their skills.
Our Clinical Training Center uses the latest in equipment, including ION cameras.

Innovative Clinical Training & Technology

Learn from forward-thinking faculty members and gain experience with the latest technological advances in optometry.

Three students sitting in chairs talking in the library

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.

Kayakers on the Charles River with the city skyline in the background.

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.

The NECO Network

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.

  • Two locations

    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.

  • Comprehensive Services

    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.

Student helps a young patient in the clinic by holding a reading sample in front of him

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.

  • 67,500 patients

    treated across nine area clinics in one year. Our clinical model enhances access to eye care across the region. 

Student gives young boy a vision screening.
First-year students provide vision screenings to area elementary school students.

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.

Fourth year student at dog race in Alaska during her externship there.
A fourth-year student takes in the K300 dog sled race during her rotation with Indian Health Services Bethel in Alaska.

Innovation Center

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. 

Three instructors in a circle with one holding tablet in hand
Headshot of Amy.
Voices of NECO

Endless Opportunities

Amy

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

Why Optometry?

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.

  • #20

    Best Healthcare Job

    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.

Why Optometry?
Faculty demonstrates procedure to student in a preclinic class.

Explore NECO

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

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