VSP Sponsors Improving Diversity in Optometric Careers Program

Students Participate in Annual Educational Program through OSU College of Optometry
Rancho Cordova, Calif., August 2, 2010 – VSP® Vision Care, the nation’s largest not-for-profit eyecare benefits and services provider, is proud to announce their sponsorship of the Improving Diversity in Optometric Careers (IDOC) program at the Ohio State University College of Optometry.  
The goal of the IDOC program is to increase the number of underrepresented optometrists by inspiring undergraduate and high school students who are competitive and diverse, to pursue a career in optometry.  
“We’re very excited to work with a program that raises awareness about optometry as a medical career,” stated Connie Vavricek, Industry Outreach Manager, VSP Vision Care. “With the growing diverse populations affected by ocular disease, it is imperative that the diversity in optometry reflects that of our communities.”  
VSP will be the exclusive eyecare sponsor for the IDOC program. Students are exposed to optometrists in a variety of settings such as shadowing current optometry students and doctors in clinics, learning about tests used during an ocular examination, hands-on experience with equipment and an introduction to academic classes such as anatomy, correcting vision and eye diseases.  
“The IDOC program is delighted to have the support of VSP Vision Care,” stated Vondolee Delgado-Nixon, Ph.D., IDOC Program Co-Coordinator of the Diversity Enhancement Committee. “This program is an investment in the future of optometry and we look forward to working with VSP to provide the students with a unique opportunity to understand the impact an optometrist can make on the daily life of a patient, whether through the care of the patient’s vision, eye health, or systemic health.”  
About VSP Global
VSP GlobalSM includes VSP Vision Care, the largest not-for-profit vision benefits and services company in the United States with 55 million members; Marchon® Eyewear Inc., one of the world’s largest manufacturers, designers and distributors of quality fashion and technologically-advanced eyewear and sunwear; Eyefinity®/Officemate® which offer innovative solutions and the premier management software and technology to improve overall practice management and patient experience; VSP Optics Group, industry leaders in new technologies, production processes, service and logistics.  

Since 1997, VSP has provided more than 585,000 low-income, uninsured children with free eyecare. Through relationships including those with the American Diabetes Association and Prevent Blindness America, VSP promotes the importance of annual eye exams for maintaining eye health and overall wellness.
About IDOC
The Improving Diversity in Optometric Careers program is an intensive three-day program for people from an under-represented ethnicity (American Indian or Alaskan Native; Asian or Pacific Islander; black, not of Hispanic origin; or Hispanic) interested in finding out more about an optometric career. The program provides information about optometry through hands-on experiences, and it aims to increase the number of under-represented ethnic minority optometrists





Pat McNeil