28 Feb In the Headlines, the Future Looks Bright

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Eyecare’s future looks strong. Want proof? There’s been plenty in the news lately.

As we reported in an Orbit brief, optometry students worldwide raised $71,720 -- a big jump over 2012 -- in the 2013 World Sight Day Challenge, which raises money to provide eyecare and eyewear for people in need worldwide. “World Sight Day is optometry’s holiday – a day for people to celebrate something they hold close to their hearts. I’ve always thought the best (and only) way to do that is by giving back,” said Micaela Ann Crowley, part of the Nova Southeastern University team that collected $12,097 for the cause.

The 22nd optometry school in the United States plans a 2016 opening at Kentucky’s University of Pikeville. Gov. Steve Beshear says a $1.5 million grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission will help get the professional school up and running. “As more people access health care through Medicaid and other programs and as our population ages, the need for medical professionals, including quality optometrists, is expected to increase,” the governor told reporters. The University of Pikeville-Kentucky College of Optometry recently gained approval as a Stage One Applicant by the American Optometric Association's Accreditation Council on Optometric Education.

A recent ODs on Facebook thread found participants lamenting the high cost of college debt many people pile up to earn their degree. But with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projecting robust job growth for both optometrists (24 percent) and dispensing opticians (23 percent) between 2012 and 2022, qualified eyecare and eyewear professionals should have no trouble landing work in their chosen fields.

Last modified on Friday, 28 February 2014 10:38
Julie Fanselow

Julie Fanselow is INVISION editor-in-chief. She has been wearing glasses since the fourth grade -- right about the same time she decided she wanted to be a journalist. Coincidence?