Seeing is Believing 2013, the first EVER virtual optometry conference, is taking place tomorrow and Wednesday, January 30 and 31. As an attendee, you get to visit exhibitors and sponsors at their virtual booths, chat with other attendees, and listen to guest speakers all in the comfort of your own home. And the great thing about it is that registration is free for students! Apparently, ICO has the most students registered for the event so far, which means that someone from ICO will likely win an iPad. I also registered to attend, but for a completely different reason (although an iPad would be nice).
The Core Leadership Team for OptometryStudents.com will be present during the conference as guest speakers and as exhibitors. As the site’s director of creative content, I’ll be manning our virtual booth along with other members of the OS team to answer questions on Thursday from 6:30-9:30 p.m. CST. This will be my very first optometry conference and I’m a little relieved that it’s going to be online. I need to ease myself in, especially when I’ve never attended a conference before (I will be attending at least three more this year, two with the OS team!).
I realized early on that it’s very important to get involved in the profession, even if you’re just a student. I got involved with OS back when I was still a pre-optometry student just doing research on different aspects of the field because I was curious. Eventually, all of my research turned into articles on OS and I’ve been doing it ever since. It’s been almost a year and now I’m actively working with other passionate optometry students from all over the U.S. and Canada, and we’re making the website better and better. When Matt Geller, the founder of OS, mentioned that we were invited to attend SiB2013 as a team, I jumped at the opportunity to meet my peers, learn more about optometry, and to promote the website.
I’ve found that optometry school is a lot more fun when you get involved. Sure, it gets busy, and sometimes you just don’t have the time for extracurricular activities, but books and classes only teach you so much. There’s a lot of pro-active learning involved, and much of what I’ve learned since coming to ICO has been from meeting new people, talking to them and asking questions. It’s all part of the experience.
So, if you haven’t registered for SiB2013 yet, it’s still not too late! And when you do, be sure to come by the OS booth to say hello!