On June 30th, longtime IACLE board member and educator, Professor Luigina (Gina) Sorbara retired from her position at the School of Optometry & Vision Science at the University of Waterloo and her role as Assistant Secretary of IACLE (previous roles include Treasurer and Vice-President).
To honour Gina’s many contributions to contact lens education worldwide, including her positions on the IACLE Board of Directors since 1992, she has been presented with the IACLE Award for Lifetime Achievement in Contact Lens Education.
Dr. Andre Stanberry was a panelist in a recent webinar on race issues hosted by SUNY College of Optometry. Dr. Stanberry, who also chairs the Science Anti-Racism Taskforce at Waterloo, spoke about a consequential conversation he had on his first day of optometry school.
Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs hosted the first ever virtual University of Waterloo Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition. Biologist Isabel Hilgendag and vision scientist Yara Mohiar both represented the Faculty of Science. Mohiar won second place, making her the fourth student from the School of Optometry & Vision Science to place/win at the university level competition.
The “Class of 2020” may have the most appropriate name possible for a graduating class of optometrists. 2020 has been called the Year of Vision by eye care professionals around the world, and this class was set to hit the ground in the summer of 2020 with their license to practice in hand.
Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit and what should have been the culmination of four years of intense study for optometry doctoral students was disrupted, leaving the students and the School of Optometry and Vision Science struggling to find solutions.
An experiment that began by testing the properties of quantum entanglement has led to the discovery of a new diagnostic tool that could help optometrists detect macular degeneration much earlier than was previously possible. Professor Ben Thompson and Andrew Silva, a post-doctoral fellow at the School of Optometry and Vision Science, partnered with colleagues from Waterloo's Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) on this groundbreaking research.
June 18th marked Convocation Day for the Class of 2020. But unlike other years, these graduates won’t walk across the stage to the applause of their peers, families and friends.
Thanks to the pandemic which cancelled in-person celebrations, they received their degrees in the mail, along with video congratulations from University President Feridun Hamdullahpur, a letter of congratulations from School Director Stanley Woo, and personal notes from staff and faculty.
Hendrik Walther, a clinical scientist in our Centre for Ocular Research & Education (CORE), wasn’t about to let COVID-19 get in the way of running the 2020 Boston Marathon last month. Instead, he created his own 46 km route around KW, visiting many CORE colleagues (from a distance) along the way. Read more about his race in Waterloo's Daily Bulletin.
Congratulations, Hendrik, and we hope to cheer you on in the next Boston Marathon!