Rocky Mountain University Opens First College of Optometry in the Intermountain West

by | Oct 25, 2022 | home feature, News

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Doctor of Optometry Program Will Help Meet Workforce Demand; Advanced Modern Medical Curriculum Prepares Students to Provide Exceptional Eye Healthcare

Provo, Utah, October 25, 2022 – Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions™ (RMU) (, an accredited exclusive graduate healthcare education institution, will start its Doctor of Optometry Program next summer and is now accepting optometry student applications for the 2023 cohort. An advanced modern medical curriculum combined with flexible interactive in-person and online courses will prepare students to provide exceptional eye healthcare while helping to meet workforce demands.

Learn more about the RMU College of Optometry here.

optometry faculty and staff

“RMU’s Doctor of Optometry program is the newest optometry program in the United States,” said Dr. Adam Hickenbotham, founding Dean of the College of Optometry. “Optometrists are America’s primary eye healthcare providers who are on the frontline of eye and vision care. As such, RMU has designed an innovative, advanced and student-focused program with in-person hands-on clinical training to help our optometry graduates provide outstanding healthcare.”

By receiving preliminary accreditation from the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education (ACOE), RMU’s College of Optometry is authorized to move forward with the Doctor of Optometry program beginning in May 2023. Students may begin to apply today.

ACOE, recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council on Higher Education accreditation, ensures programs have met the Council’s standards of educational effectiveness and show a demonstrated commitment to quality assessment and improvement.

Fast facts:

eye doctor examines patient

●  Doctors of optometry provide more than two-thirds of primary eye care in the U.S.

●  An estimated 65% of the U.S. population requires vision-correction products.

●  Optometrists perform an estimated 88 million of the total 104 million refractive eye exams performed annually by all eye care professionals.

●  Optometrists make $150,000 – 200,000 or more annually depending on mode of practice and years of experience.

●  The demand for optometrists is increasing due to an aging population, an increase in insurance coverage, and a recovery in healthcare spending following the COVID-19 pandemic.

●  As primary healthcare providers, doctors of optometry have extensive, ongoing training to examine, diagnose, treat, and manage ocular disorders, diseases and injuries, and systemic diseases that manifest in the eye.

“For the past 24 years, Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions has been advancing knowledge and advancing healthcare as an accredited exclusive graduate healthcare education institution,” said Dr. Richard P. Nielsen, Founding President and CEO of RMU. “Our new College of Optometry is another significant RMU milestone that will develop the next generation of optometrists in our high-tech facilities using modern medical curriculum by the nation’s renowned optometric faculty. RMU is honored to expand the availability of optometry education for students across the nation.”