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become a member today!



Find information on how to become a COA member and join a local society below. 

We’ve also included a breakdown of your membership dues for you to understand where you are investing your money. 


1. How do I become a member of the COA and a specific local society? 

For Fourth-Year Students/New Graduates:

Your student membership will be automatically transitioned to OD membership upon your graduation. However please update your information here so that the COA can connect you with the appropriate local optometric society, or if you are going to practice out-of-state, the correct state affiliate. COA will then automatically finalize your active member status with AOA and your local optometric society. 

Remember, as a new graduate, your dues investment will be waived the year in which you graduated. An ascending dues investment scale is in place for the five years after your graduation year (see table on page 3). This comes out to only about $35/month for your first year!


For Post-Graduate Students (Ex: Pursuing a Residency):

If you are pursuing a postgraduate or residency program, submit a membership application and make sure you indicate the institution’s name and program completion date. Your COA and local society dues investment will be waived while you complete the program; AOA dues are $35.


For Practicing Doctors:

Membership applications can be found online HERE.


2. How do I change my local society affiliation? 

If you would like to change your local society affiliation - it is easy! Just fill out this Status Change request form and mail it to the address at the bottom of the form, or e-mail or Jodi Haas


If you are signing up for COA membership yourself online here, you will be asked on the second page of the application to specify the local society you would like to join.  


3. Do I get a discount for being a new graduate?

Yes! An ascending dues investment scale is in place for the five years after your graduation year.



4. What if I am only working part-time, or am an educator? 

There are several membership categories that may qualify you for special membership dues.  You can specify this on your application. 


Project Keep (join our Board! :)

Special program for new licentiates to encourage participation in leadership by serving on a local society board or society committee position. Their active volunteer efforts help to extend the ascending dues scale from 5 to 9 years.


5. Where can I find more information? 

Check out this page on the COA website.  You can find more information about the amazing resources you get by being a COA member!


Any more questions? 

Feel free to contact our Membership Directors Jane Pouvaranukoah & Lillian Nghe at anytime.


You can also find us here: 

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