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The Eye Center Primary Care Optometry, w Emphasis in Family Practice Optometry and Ocular Disease

Basic Information

Category Title: Primary Care Optometry
Program Area of Emphasis: Family Practice Optometry, Ocular Disease
Program Site: Southern College of Optometry
Program Location: School or College of Optometry
Program Address: 1225 Madison Avenue

Memphis, Tennessee 38104
Phone Number: 901-722-3302
Fax Number: 901-722-3244
Affiliation: Southern College of Optometry
Director of Residency Education:

Cheryl E. Mengelt, O.D.

Program Application Deadline: January 30
Program URL:

Program Description

Date Program Established:
Accreditation Status: Accredited

Click here for more information about accreditation of optometric residency programs.

Combined Residency/Graduate Program: No
Program Mission Statement:

The Residency in Primary Care Optometry, with Emphasis in Family Practice Optometry and Ocular Disease Program educates graduate optometrists in the art and science of optometry by providing significant opportunities for residents to enhance skills in the diagnosis and management of eye and vision problems encountered in primary care practice, encompassing all aspects of optometric care, with a special emphasis on providing experience in the diagnosis and management of ocular problems beyond that provided in the Doctor of Optometry program.  These optometrists, upon completion of the residency program, will be able to provide patient care of the highest caliber and be qualified to serve the profession as leaders in optometric patient care and education.


Program Description:

GOAL 1:  To provide the resident with an adequate number of patient encounters to strengthen the resident’s diagnostic and management skills of varying visual disorders.

GOAL 2:  To provide the resident with enough patient encounters to enhance the resident’s examination skills.

GOAL 3: To provide the resident with the opportunity to develop expertise in advanced diagnostic procedures.

GOAL 4:  To provide the resident with opportunities to participate in patient care in practice settings other than the SCO Eye Center.

GOAL 5:  To provide the resident opportunities for presenting topics in lecture and/or poster format to fellow professionals.

GOAL 6:  To provide the resident an appreciation of the importance of scholarly activity.

GOAL 7:  To provide the resident opportunities to develop skills considered necessary to become an effective educator.

Program Length: 53-56 weeks
Number of Positions Available in Program: 1
Program Starting Date: July 1
Typical Weekly Hours and After-Hours Responsibilities:

Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. On call duty required.

Requirements for Completion:

A.  The resident is required to deliver clinical services at a level that is satisfactory to the Residency Supervisor, the Director of Residency Programs, and the SCO administration.  The resident will be given a specific schedule each quarter. Approximately 40 hours per week will be assigned. After hours on-call assignments will be made on a periodic basis. Participation in community screening activities will be required on a periodic basis. 

B.  The resident will be required to keep a record of patient contacts.  Cases will be reviewed periodically by the Supervisor of the Residency Program, the Director of Residency Programs, when appropriate.

C.  The resident will be required to write a paper based on original research, literature review, or a clinical case for publication in an acceptable professional journal.

D.  The resident will be required to deliver an oral presentation at the annual Resident Weekend, held on the campus at SCO.

E.  The resident will be expected to perform in a professional manner in the delivery of patient care services and to observe those proprieties of conduct and courtesies that are consistent with the rules and regulations governing the Southern College of Optometry.

F. The resident will be required to participate in and complete the requirements set forth in the curriculum.

G.  Upon successful completion of the Residency Program, the Residency Supervisor and the Director of Residency Programs will recommend the granting of certification to the Vice President of Academic Affairs.

H.  Any resident accepted for training can be dismissed, without receiving a certificate of completion, for infractions of the rules and regulations of Southern College of Optometry, for failure to meet the requirements set forth in the Residency Handbook and program description, or for any action that jeopardizes the safety of patients, personnel, or physical facilities.

A resident rotating through a hospital based (or similar) residency program must adhere to all facility policies and procedures, including but not limited to, receiving all required immunizations or showing appropriate medical documentation that he/she is in full medical compliance with required immunizations.  In addition, if a resident cannot receive a flu or similar immunization due to potential allergic reaction, medical documentation must be made available to the Program Supervisor prior to the program's start date.  A resident should receive the required immunizations provided by the facility when appropriate.  Otherwise, any costs incurred will be the resident's responsibility.  Any grievances should be submitted in writing to SCO's Director for Residency Programs utilizing the procedures found in the Residency Handbook.


Program Salary/Stipend: $41.000.00 paid bi-monthly. Compensation is not contingent upon productivity of the resident.
Program Benefits and Liability Coverage: Health Coverage

Professional Liability Insurance


Paid Sick Leave

Travel Allowance

Other: The residency program is 12.5 months in length from July 1 to July 15 of the following year. The stipend is $41,000 which will be paid on a bi-monthly basis. Compensation is not contingent upon productivity of the resident. The resident may also purchase health insurance at the student rate. Professional liability insurance and a $750 travel stipend are provided by the College. Also included in the benefit package are clinic coats, 10 days academic leave, 10 personal days and 18 days vacation leave, as outlined in the paragraph below. The resident is expected to obtain a DEA license and will be reimbursed for the time period of the residency. LEAVE POLICY Eighteen days of vacation leave are provided to the resident. These days are those on which The Eye Center at Southern College of Optometry is normally closed: July 4, Labor Day, Thanksgiving and the Friday following, ten working days at Christmas and New Year’s, Martin Luther King Day, two days during the Spring Break, and Memorial Day. Provision of these vacation days is automatic and does not require approval or submission of a leave request form. The resident may be required to provide on call services during some of these days. Ten days of educational leave are provided. These days are intended to allow the resident to attend professional meetings. Ten days of personal leave are provided. The resident must submit a standard leave request form in advance to request educational and personal leave. This form should be completed by the resident and submitted to the supervisor. The supervisor will then approve or disapprove the request. If the request is approved by the supervisor the leave request form is forwarded to the Director of Residency Programs, who is responsible for tracking the resident’s leave balance and ensuring that the clinical schedule will be appropriately covered. If the resident has a leave balance sufficient to cover the request, the DRP will approve the request and forward the appropriate copies of the form to the resident and the supervisor. Requests will be granted on a first come/first served basis during times when more than one resident is requesting time off. The resident and supervisor are responsible for notifying the appropriate Chiefs of Service and the Director of Clinical Operations of the days that the resident will not be available to provide clinical services. The resident should understand that on-call duties may be concurrent with some expected leave days. Residents should plan ahead and consult with the director of the on-call service to avoid conflicts.
Completion Certificate: Yes
VA Hospital Affiliation: No

Key Contacts

Program Coordinator, Coordinator Title: Sylvia (Beth) E. Sparrow, Residency Supervisor
Telephone: 901-722-3302
E-mail Address:
Program Co-Coordinator, Co-Coordinator Title:
E-mail Address:

Application Information

Application Materials and Procedures:

Cheryl E. Mengelt, O.D., Director of Residency Programs, Southern College of Optometry, 1245 Madison Avenue, Memphis, TN 38014, 901-722-3201 901-722-3244 (fax)

Selection Procedure and Admission Criteria:

A.  All applicants must complete the SCO application online at All applicants must complete the Optometry Residency Match (ORMatch), and provide all required supporting documentation by the deadline of January 30 to be considered for an SCO program.

  1. You must have already passed NBEO Part I, II and TMOD in order to apply to one of our programs through ORMatch.

  2. You must have passed NBEO Part III and ISE (if applicable) in order to begin an SCO affiliated residency program. 

  3. Those applying to a VA hospital or a state that does not require TMOD to obtain licensure are an exception if TMOD is not passed on first attempt.

B. Applicant must have earned an O.D. degree, or will have earned such a degree by the time of matriculation from a school/college of optometry accredited by the Accreditation Council on Optometric Education. 

C. Applicant will furnish a transcript to ORMatch from his/her school/college of optometry. An applicant should have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in the professional optometric curriculum.

D. Applicant must pass all parts of the National Board of Examiners in Optometry examinations required for state licensure. If accepted, the resident is expected to obtain the appropriate state license.

E. A personal interview will be required. 

F. The College affirms that no person shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity at or affiliated with Southern College of Optometry on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, gender, age, disability, or national origin.

Program Application Deadline: January 30

Additional Comments