Eye on Education

ASCO's Annual Meeting In Session

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Building upon the success of ASCO’s first ever Annual Meeting last year, this year’s Annual Meeting offered a lot of insightful presentations that welcomed comment and dialogue from those in attendance.

The open Annual Meeting was well attended and the agenda was varied.

To begin the meeting, ASCO’s outgoing President, Dr. David Damari “passed the gavel” to incoming President, Dr. Elizabeth Hoppe. After a few nice words from each of them, Dr. Hoppe began the meeting. After remarks about the past year, presentations were given from Dr. Flanagan, regarding ASCO’s financial statements and investments as well as from Dr. Linda Casser, Chair of the IPECP Committee. The IPECP Committee’s motion to approve the IPECP Toolkit was approved.

A special moment during the Annual Meeting was stopping to honor special people within ASCO with a resolution. The resolutions were given to:

  • Dr. Berman – in celebration of his retirement as Dean of MCPHS
  • Dr. David Damari – in appreciation for his two-year tenure as ASCO’s President
  • Dr. Earl Smith – in appreciation for his time served on ASCO’s Board of Directors and in celebration of his retirement as Dean of UHCO
  • The National Optometric Association – in celebration of their 50th anniversary
  • The Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry – in celebration of their 100th anniversary
  • Salus – in celebration of their 100th anniversary
  • UAB – in celebration of their 50th anniversary

Of particular note was a resolution in memory of Dr. Donald Jarnigan, previous Dean of Midwestern University, Arizona College of Optometry, who passed away in November 2018.

Dr. David Heath, Chair of the Sub-Specialization Task Force, led a lively conversation on establishing sub-specialties in optometry.

Another presentation on the Optometry Gives Me Life campaign was given and the powerful messaging and strong metrics was reiterated for the attendees.

Dr. Gary Chu, Chair of the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Special Interest Group and Dr. Guilherme Albieri from SUNY gave a presentation on the important topic of diversity and inclusion and how each optometric institution can employ both. Dr. Albieri shared SUNY’s experience conducting a diversity hackathon as a model for others to consider. During their presentation, Drs. Chu and Albieri reminded everyone, “we are more than checking off a box,” and that “diversity is the mix and inclusion is the glue.” They concluded with a call to action: Define what diversity and inclusion means to you and your school.

ASCO’s next Annual Meeting will be held on June 24, 2020, in conjunction with AOA’s Optometry’s Meeting in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.


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