KYCO student receives 2023 VSP Vision of Hope Scholarship

The University of Pikeville-Kentucky College of Optometry (KYCO) congratulates Elijah Riffe, recipient of the 2023 VSP Vision of Hope Scholarship. The scholarship is funded by VSP Vision™ and awarded annually to an excelling, first-year KYCO student who intends to practice in the rural Appalachian region. Riffe, a native of Ripley, W.Va., received $5,000 toward his education.

“I’m a proud Appalachian, and I want to become an optometrist to fulfill KYCO’s mission of practicing in rural areas to serve the underserved,” said Riffe. “This scholarship means so much to me, and it’s a step in the right direction in helping me achieve my goals.”

Over the last 10 years, VSP Vision has provided more than $3 million in scholarship support to optometry students as part of their commitment to empower human potential through sight. Riffe was recognized among his peers by a VSP® representative during orientation week.

In addition to its yearly scholarship, VSP has been an avid supporter of KYCO since its inception. The organization generously sponsors college-wide events and student organizations.

“At VSP Vision, we’re working to help support undeserved rural communities, like the Appalachian region, by awarding scholarships to students who are committed to delivering care where it’s needed most,” said VSP Vision Vice President of Provider Relations Jim Caster. “Riffe reflects that commitment, and we’re proud to support his optometric journey.”

For more information about KYCO, visit or call 606-653-2416.


About VSP Vision

At VSP Vision, our purpose is to empower human potential through sight. As the first national not-for-profit vision benefits company, this is what drives everything we do. For nearly 70 years, VSP has been the leader in health-focused vision care. Every day, the people that power our complementary businesses—VSP® Vision Care, Marchon Eyewear, Inc., Visionworks®, Eyefinity®, Eyeconic, VSP® Optics, and VSP® Ventures—work together to create a world where everyone can bring their best vision to life. That means providing affordable access to eye care and eyewear for more than 85 million members through a network of more than 41,000 doctors. It also means expanding access to vision care to those disadvantaged by income, distance, or disaster through VSP Vision Eyes of Hope®. To date, more than 3.8 million people in need have received access to no-cost eye care and eyewear through one of our Eyes of Hope programs. Learn more about how we’re reinvesting in greater vision, health, and opportunities for all at