Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

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Starting from the Ground UP - A Guide to Opening a New Optometry Practice

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Nov 14, 2017 2:43:13 PM

Company Name: Rev360

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Is .edu For You?

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Sep 5, 2017 2:05:08 PM

If this isn’t your first time reading ASCO’s Eye on Optometry blog, you know about the variety and versatility a career in optometry has to offer. The list of potential positions and practice settings is quite long. In just one of the possible settings, academia, which is the focus of this post, a future optometrist has multiple roles to aspire to. For example, faculty members at schools and colleges of optometry include basic science and clinical science professors or instructors. Optometrists teaching in any of these positions may also conduct research or supervise optometry students or residents as they see patients as part of their Doctor of Optometry degree program or residency. Some optometrists work part-time as clinical faculty members while working in another practice setting outside academia. Optometrists may also teach in departments of ophthalmology at medical schools or work with departments of ophthalmology in a hospital setting. In addition, some U.S. Veterans Health Administration hospitals are affiliated with academic institutions, which allows optometrists who are employed there to maintain faculty appointments. Leadership roles, which are often part of a school, college or university administration, are also available to optometrists in academia. Types of positions in this category include Dean of Students, Director of Admissions, Vice President for Student, Alumni and College Development, Vice President for Research, Dean of Academic Affairs, and Director of Internship Programs. 

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A Short Conversation with Dr. David Damari, ASCO President

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Jul 6, 2017 2:50:47 PM

Each July, ASCO swears in a new President to serve for the year. This year’s President, Dr. David Damari, sat down with ASCO’s Intern, Amanda Howarth, and Director of Communications, Kimberly O’Sullivan to talk about the next twelve months.

Dr. David A. Damari is the Dean at Ferris State University Michigan College of Optometry. Prior to his appointment as Dean, he was a professor at Southern College of Optometry (SCO) and the Chair of the Department of Assessment, responsible for institutional review, measures of academic outcomes, and regional and professional accreditation. He is a Fellow and past president of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development and a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry.

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Four Schaeffers Come to One Conclusion: Optometry is a Great Career

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

May 30, 2017 11:20:59 AM

Dr. Jack L. Schaeffer, OD, FAAO, has such a remarkable passion for optometry as a career that his enthusiasm has proven to be contagious. The success of the 18-location (and still growing!) full-scope eye care practice he founded in Alabama is built upon his love for the profession, an unwavering commitment to his patients, and the core values of "science, style and service." All along the way, Dr. Schaeffer has lectured, written articles, participated in clinical trials, and shared his insights as a member of industry advisory boards. He has inspired many others to become optometrists, and all three of his children ultimately decided to attend optometry school. Dr. Brooke Schaeffer Kaplan, a graduate of the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry, and Dr. Mark Schaeffer, a Southern College of Optometry graduate, are both working in this practice, and David Schaeffer is currently at Illinois College of Optometry and will join it upon completion of a residency. 

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Social Life in Optometry School: What’s it Like?

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Mar 14, 2017 1:26:59 PM

Compared to undergraduate school, a health professions education such as a four-year Doctor of Optometry degree program involves a heavier course load, more challenging material and a more serious commitment. Students really invest themselves and work hard to eventually experience the
stability, flexibility, desirable income and personal satisfaction of an optometric career. But that doesn’t mean optometry school is all slit lamps and studying. If you’re about to begin your optometric education, you can also expect to have a fun, gratifying and refreshing social life.

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Can You Take a Gap Year Before Optometry School?

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Jan 20, 2017 9:00:05 AM

In 2016, when President Obama’s daughter Malia decided to take a “gap year” between high school and college, it was widely reported and drew a lot of attention to the concept. College graduates, too, can consider taking a gap year before moving on to graduate or professional school, including optometry school. This is something optometry school admissions officials say they’re seeing more often.

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It’s Never Too Early to Start Prepping for a Career as a Health Professional

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Dec 12, 2016 11:05:06 AM

For the times when “I want to be a doctor when I grow up” turns into an actual calling to pursue a career in the health professions, optometry can be a great answer. For those who are eager to begin setting themselves up for success, preparation to become a Doctor of Optometry can begin as early as high school.

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An Optometrist Saved My Vision!

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Nov 4, 2016 10:10:02 AM

A marketing professional who has been collaborating with the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) for the past several years recently shared the following story with ASCO staff. She would like everyone to know how invaluable the accessibility, compassion and expertise of an optometrist were to her recently when she experienced a retinal detachment. 

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Have You Considered an Optometry Residency?

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Oct 4, 2016 11:57:45 AM

As graduation from optometry school neared, Valerie Lam OD, FAAO, knew she wanted pediatrics and vision therapy to be her career focus, so she wanted to further sharpen her VT skills and add to the experience she gained in her fourth-year rotations. She and a classmate had discussed the possibility of opening their own practice, so she also wanted to be as equipped as possible for patient care and “come out of school thinking more like a doctor and less like a student,” she says. Also on her mind was having the option of teaching at some point in the future. A residency was the way to address all of these goals. The summer after her graduation from Southern California College of Optometry at Marshall B. Ketchum University, Dr. Lam completed the college’s 2012-2013 Pediatric Optometry and Vision Therapy residency.

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15 Tips for Applying to Optometry School

Posted by Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry

Aug 31, 2016 4:16:57 PM

Anyone familiar with the optometry school admissions process would say it’s more like a marathon than a sprint. One of the mileposts, by the way, is actually submitting the application to one or more schools through the online Optometry Centralized Application Service (OptomCAS), which opened for the 2016-2017 cycle on June 29. But there’s more to the process. Dr. Mark Colip, who is currently Vice President for Student, Alumni & College Development at Illinois College of Optometry, chaired the college’s Admissions Committee for 23 years. During that time, he reviewed more than 25,000 student applications. He recently told Eye on Optometry, “The application process is designed to help you best prepare for matriculation and success in optometry school as well as to prove yourself worthy of the seat.” Dr. Colip recommends that instead of taking a “what do I have to do to get admitted?” approach, students should ask themselves “how do I best prepare myself for success in the application process and at the schools to which I’m applying?” 

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About Eye on Optometry

Welcome to Eye on Optometry, a new blog from the Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO)! The main goal of the blog is to provide timely and useful information to anyone who is interested in applying to optometry school. It’s all part of one of ASCO’s many strategic objectives, which is to help the schools and colleges of optometry develop a large, diverse and highly qualified national applicant pool while getting the word out about the attractiveness of a career in the profession.  We will also blog about other optometry-related topics from time to time.

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