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USN Optometry students to attend summer school in Berkeley

University California Berkeley
Photo: UC-Berkeley

Kongsberg Optometry invites current 1st year Bachelor and Master students to apply to MyOpIA, a new summer research training program, which represents a collaboration between the Berkeley Optometry Program in UC Berkeley (UCB) School of Optometry and University College of Southeast Norway (USN).

The goal of this program is to introduce students to clinical and/or translational research. Through an 8-week research internship, students can expect to be engaged in hands-on research related to myopia and refractive error development, backed by research-related training through face-to-face and on-line seminars/workshops, as well as to be exposed to the similarities and differences in the scope of optometric training and practice, and cultural differences between Norway and their host country of the US.

The longer term goal is to encourage students to pursue advanced research training and/or involvement in research as a career goal after completing their professional training. Some participants may also have opportunity to co-author publications or present their work at the Kongsberg Vision Meeting and/or American Academy of Optometry or other scientific meetings.

“We hope that the summer school will be a catalyst for motivating talented students who want to pursue research after completing education in optometry”, says Professor Rigmor Bara, who heads the National Center for Optics, vision and eye care at USN.

Rigmor Baraas


Funding is available for 2 students undergoing training towards their optometry Bachelor and Master degrees. The program requires a full-time 8 week commitment during the summer (June 5th–July 28th 2017), 2 of which will be spent at USN Kongsberg and 6 weeks of which will be spent with our UC Berkeley partner program in Berkeley, California. Successful applicants will receive 10,000 Norwegian Kroner (NOK) towards travel costs (economy), NOK 5,000 towards accommodation and NOK 7,500 as a stipend.

"Our goal is to be able to offer this to more students in the future", says Bara.

Should You Apply?

If you are first year Bachelor or Master Optometry student, with a potential interest in research (especially myopia-related), and an urge to travel, you are strongly encouraged to apply. This summer research exchange program is an ideal opportunity for you to determine whether research is for you and if you have never travelled to the US, it is your opportunity to experience what it is like to be a foreigner/minority and develop, at a personal level, cultural awareness and sensitivities. This program also represents an opportunity to gain an international perspective on Optometric practice and to establish long lasting international connections to potential future colleagues.

How to apply

Deadline is March 1st. Applications will be available soon.

The MyOpIA Summer Research Program Application Form is available for downloading. Complete the form, save the form with your last name included in the file name (e.g., Smith_MyOpIA_applic.doc) and email it as an attachment to Prof. Rigmor C. Baraas. Please note that you should include your resume (500 words or less) within the resume field on the form (i.e., do not mail a separate resume).