International Vision Expo Exposes Optometry Students to New Trends, Products and Technology

August 12, 2011

Norwalk, CT (August 12, 2011) – International Vision Expo & Conference, held September 21-25, 2011 (Education: September 21-25, Exhibition: September 22-24) at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas is pleased to offer expanded programming for students of optometry.

“Vision Expo West offers opportunities for optometry students to get information that they don’t get in the classroom,” said Tom Loughran, vice president for Reed Exhibitions. “In addition to learning about practice management, they’re provided valuable networking opportunities with their peers and current ODs that could be their future employer or partners.”

Optometry students receive free exhibit hall registration as well as access to sit in on any continuing education course free of charge. On Saturday, September 24, the Medical and Scientific Theater in the exhibit hall will present a full day of optometry student-specific education courses that tackle real-world topics, including developing a business plan, the past, present and future of eyecare, and fiscal responsibility.

Complimentary events have also been designed to help students make valuable connections with colleagues across the country. Along with daily luncheons and networking activities in the exhibit hall, students are invited to mix and mingle with peers during an exclusive Friday night party at Indigo Lounge at Bally’s Resort & Casino before heading out on the town.

This year, International Vision Expo & Conference welcomes several student organizations to the show, including the Private Practice Clubs of Optometry. “Since launching in 2008, our optometry student program has been steadily gaining momentum,” stated Loughran. “We’ve increased the level of school participation and formed new industry partnerships with organizations that are looking to help create buzz, build-out the programming and expand networking for the next generation.” A total of 283 student-friendly exhibitors have been identified in My Show Planner at www.visionexpowest.com for this year’s show.

To provide students the opportunity to fund a trip to International Vision Expo, a free hotel room giveaway was held, drawing more than 160 applicants, with winners representing 13 colleges of Optometry. In addition, 22 student travel grants were awarded in the amount of $1,000; hosting a representative from each of the schools of optometry in the United States and Canada. Applicants submitted a 500 word essay describing their awareness of tradeshows for eye care professionals, the importance of these shows for their career, and how their attendance at Vision Expo could benefit their future career. 

“Optometry students are limited by the availability of products, supplies, and resources available to them at their individual schools,” said Roya Attarhousseini, a student at the University of the Incarnate Word School of Optometry. “Vision Expo provides a unique setting, giving students knowledge and exposure to new trends, products and resources that are available in the field.” She added, “Reading about new products online or in a magazine does not have the same effect as seeing, touching, and using them in person. A picture is worth a thousand words, but experiencing a new product in person, is worth a thousand pictures.” 

Winning applicants will participate in a Student Focus Group on Saturday, September 24 from 12:45 - 1:30 pm to assist Vision Expo in understanding the needs of students and Young ODs.

For more information or to register, visit www.visionexpowest.com.

International Vision Expos, the worldwide conference and exhibition for eye care and eyewear, are trade only events which draw more than 30,000 eye care professionals each year. Co-owned by Reed Exhibitions and The Vision Council, International Vision Expo gives back to the entire ophthalmic community. Proceeds from International Vision Expo are used by The Vision Council to educate consumers about the importance of vision care and the options in eyewear and other related products. In 2010, The Vision Council reached millions of consumers with its messages through marketing materials, public relations outreach and strategic partnerships.

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