ISEE provides many fee waivers as well as travel support for participating in the PDP. However, many research grants, advisors/PI’s, departments, and other funding sources can support professional development or training activities and associated travel. Please consider whether you have access to such external funds to support your participation in the PDP (entirely or in part)

Costs should not deter you from applying to the PDP, and if required, you may apply for an award from ISEE. We cannot guarantee financial support for all participants, but we would like to support as many participants as possible. Please contact your Chapter Lead for more assistance with PDP finances.

As part of your Application, you will need to complete the PDP Cost Planning Worksheet


Program Instructional Fee

There is an instructional fee for PDP. The instructional fee for 2020 is $3000, which covers all instructors, materials, and the full cost of running the program including application and selection process, team formation, ongoing expert consultation for participants, etc. ISEE has grants and receives institutional support that allows for many reduced, partial, or waived registration fees.

Program Instructional Fee Options:

  • Pay the FULL fee of $3000
  • Pay a REDUCED fee of $1500
  • Pay a PARTIAL fee of $500
  • You may request an Instructional FEE WAIVER when submitting your PDP Cost Planning Worksheet.


PDP Events


During the Inquiry Institute all participants are expected to stay as guests at the hotel and the program is designed specifically with this in mind. The Inquiry Institute begins SATURDAY APRIL 4, ending with a closing dinner on TUESDAY APRIL 7, 2020.  Plan to check out of the hotel on WEDNESDAY APRIL 8.

Costs indicated below are not paid for by ISEE, except under extenuating circumstances. Be sure to consider them in your planning:

  • Ground transportation: There is a free shuttle service between the Hyatt Monterey hotel and the Monterey airport. If you are flying into a different airport, please consider the ground transportation costs. The Hyatt Monterey is not in walking distance to many restaurants or coffee shops. Plan to use Uber or Lyft, or share rides with participants from the local area that have their car. Parking is free at the Hyatt.
  • Meals: Lunch is provided each working day of the Institutes. However breakfast and dinner is not included in the Institutes, except dinner is included on the final day of the Inquiry Institute (Tues April 7). Please research meal options near the Hyatt.  Your room will include a fridge, coffee maker and there is a microwave available in the market place in the lobby.
  • Other incidentals

Program costs: You can apply for funding support from ISEE for the following expenses, or if you have external funding (not requesting ISEE funding) you will pay for the following costs directly:

  • Lodging and meal plan at check-out, as follows:
    • $644.52 per person: 4 nights, shared rooming/double occupancy.  
    • Additional travel night - $101.13 double occupancy (shared rooming), to accommodate an extra night of lodging for participants traveling from more distant locations, one day prior to start of the Inquiry Institute
    • Airfare/ground transportation:
      • Roundtrip economy flight, home airport to Monterey, CA (MRY - Monterey Regional Airport). Or flight to San Jose airport (SJC).

Ground Transportation: if flying in to SJC, Monterey airbus ( has many daily shuttles. If flying in to MRY, take a taxi or ride-share service.


Participants attend only one Design Institute. ISEE has arranged for Design Institutes that minimize travel requirements for as many participants as possible, and hopes that participants can assist in keeping costs down by covering their own travel expenses at the Design Institutes.

Our general policy is that participants find a way to pay their own transportation, accommodations, and meals for the Design Institute, so please be sure to factor these into your planning.

We encourage attendees to get in touch with other local PDP participants to gather information on the most economical accommodations available.

However, we realize that this can make costs unbalanced for people located further from Design Institute sites, so we are able to provide stipends or reimbursements for some participants. Each Design Institute is unique, and funding availability to assist participants also varies, which is further described in the sections that follow.

The bottom line is: try as hard as you can to help us keep costs down so we can serve more people, but don't let funding prohibit you from participating.

2020 Design Institutes scheduled at the following locations:  

  • HOUSTON Design Institute, April 24-26, 2020 - held at the University of Houston College of Optometry. Attended by participants from: Houston, Austin, Boulder, Michigan State, New York City, South Carolina, and other regions
  • SANTA CRUZ Design Institute, May 1-3, 2020 - held on the campus of the University of California, Santa Cruz. Attended by participants from: California, Hawaii, and other regions

Final placement of teams and participants at Design Institutes will depend on individual schedules, instructor availability, and other factors.  The guidelines above are an educated guess based on prior years.


Houston Design Institute Information

The Houston Design Institute will be held at the University of Houston campus, in Houston, Texas.  The Design Institute will begin at approximately 1:00 PM on Friday April 24, and will end at approximately 3:00 PM on Sunday April 26. For travel planning, participants should make sure that they arrive and depart allowing for full participation during that time frame.

Participants requiring airplane travel to Houston may request assistance for airfares from ISEE.  Location, directions, and airport information can be found at  The University of Houston is a ~15 minute drive from Houston Hobby Airport (HOU) and ~30 minutes from George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH). 

Accommodations: Closest Option would be the University of Houston Hilton: 5 minute walk to University of Houston. Rate: Double - Approx $200

Other option that is fairly nearby: Holiday Inn Express, 1810 Bell St, Houston, TX 77003; (713) 652-9400 Rate: Double - Approx $220

Meals: Lunch will be provided on April 25 and 26.  Participants should plan to cover meals outside of lunch. 

Santa Cruz Design Institute Information

The Santa Cruz Design Institute will be held at the University of California Santa Cruz campus, in Santa Cruz, California.  The Design Institute will begin at approximately 1:00 PM on Friday May 1, and will end at approximately 3:00 PM on Sunday May 3. For travel planning, participants should make sure that they arrive and depart allowing for full participation during that time frame.

Accommodations: The Mission Inn ( offers a special UCSC agreement rate for programs affiliated with the university. Inform the agent you are attending a UCSC workshop when you call to make a reservation. 

There are also many airbnbs and VRBOs in the area. Costs vary but estimate $100 per person per night for shared accommodations.

Meals: Lunch will be provided on May 3. Participants should plan on paying for their meals not included in the Design Institute schedule.

Timing: The Santa Cruz Design Institute will begin at approximately 1:00 PM on Friday May 1, and will end at approximately 3:00 PM on Sunday May 3. For travel planning, participants should make sure that they arrive and depart allowing for full participation during that time frame.

Travel: Participants requiring airplane travel to Santa Cruz may request assistance for airfares from ISEE. There are three airport options available: San Francisco (SFO), San Jose (SJC), and Oakland (OAK).  SJC is the closest drive (about 45 minutes), but SFO and OAK sometimes provide good options even though they are a little further away (about 75-minute drive). Regardless of the airport, leaving Santa Cruz on a Sunday afternoon will be slow due to tourists heading home from the beach, so participants should not plan on a flight any earlier than 6:00 PM on May 3. 

Ground transportation is not covered by ISEE, and traveling participants should plan to rent a car, hopefully sharing with other PDP participants. Shuttles from SJC or SFO airport are available ($40 each way to SJC, $55 to SFO); however, the UC Santa Cruz campus is not within walking distance of the hotel, so a rental car will be very helpful.


See accommodation recommendations HERE. 


Please let us know if you have any questions related to funding and travel support (