New Optometry Partnership Announced


Maryville University has announced a new partnership with The College of Optometry at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. The collaboration, called the 3+4 Program, allows students to obtain a bachelor of science degree from Maryville University and a doctorate in optometry from UMSL in seven years rather than eight. The program will be available to students entering Maryville University in fall 2009.

Through the 3+4 Program, pre-optometry students at Maryville University apply to the UMSL optometry program during the fall semester of their third year. If accepted, the students will begin the optometry program at UMSL during the fall semester of their fourth year. At the completion of their fifth year overall (or second year at UMSL), the student receives his or her bachelor degree from Maryville University. Students who remain on track with their courses and professional training can then earn their O.D. at the completion of their fourth year at UMSL.

Dan Sparling, Ph.D., dean of Maryville’s College of Arts and Sciences, believes that students in the 3+4 program will benefit from Maryville’s excellent record in preparing students for careers in the medical field.

“This program also supports Maryville’s mission of integrating liberal and professional learning,” Sparling said. “We are excited to be able to offer students this new option for entering the field of optometry.”

Pre-optometry students at Maryville University have the option of enrolling in three programs: biology, biology/biotechnology or biomedical science. The students also are invited to participate in the Pre-Optometry Student Club at UMSL.

Maryville University, founded in 1872, is a four-year, private university located in west St. Louis County. Ranked by US News & World Report as one of America’s Best Colleges in the Midwest, Maryville University students may choose from 50 academic programs, including degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels. Among recent graduates, 94 percent are employed or attending graduate school. More than 15,000 Maryville alumni work and live in the St. Louis region.