Director of Communications
New Partnership Endowment Results from Dissolution of the Partnership Foundation for Optometric Education
Endowment Will Fund Grants to Schools and Colleges of Optometry
ROCKVILLE, MD, August 2, 2013 – An agreement was signed establishing a new Partnership Endowment at the June Board of Directors’ Meeting of the Partnership Foundation for Optometric Education, and the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO).
The Partnership Foundation’s fund balance has been transferred to the new Endowment to aid the schools and colleges of optometry through grants for programs and projects to advance optometric education. The Partnership Endowment will continue to grow, ensuring that funding is available for future generations. The new Partnership Endowment maintains the spirit of the original Foundation, except that ASCO will now both govern and manage the fund.
Since its establishment in 1996, the Partnership Foundation had become a true “partnership” for the optometric community to invest in the future of the profession. However, the Foundation deliberated about the direction of the organization given the combined challenges of the economic climate and the changing needs of the profession over the years. Additionally, the original goals of the Foundation, which focused on using funds for capital improvements and modernization, are no longer a priority for optometry’s educational institutions.
The Foundation’s President, Dr. Pete Kehoe, noted the positive impact of establishing the new Endowment, “The original creators of the Partnership can be proud that their vision to support optometric education will live on for generations to come. The collaboration and spirit of cooperation between ASCO, the American Academy of Optometry and the American Optometric Association to transition to the Endowment is a testament to the passion that the organizations have for the future of our profession.”
About the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry
The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) is a non-profit association representing the interests of optometric education. Founded in 1941 and headquartered in Rockville, Md., ASCO is committed to achieving excellence in optometric education and to helping its member institutions prepare well-qualified graduates for entrance into the profession of optometry. Its membership encompasses the schools and colleges of optometry in the United States and Puerto Rico. A number of optometry schools outside the United States and allied organizations are affiliate members.