As part of a partnership to support the next generation of eyecare professionals, Transitions Optical and the Opticians Association of Canada (OAC) are now accepting submissions for the 2021 Students of Vision Scholarship Program. Currently enrolled (for the 2021-2022 school year) opticianry, optometry and optometric assistant students from across Canada are eligible to apply for the chance to win one of three prizes: a $2,500, $1,500 or $500 scholarship.

To enter the scholarship program, students must develop a project in the form of an essay, video or presentation about how they will approach the increased need for light protection to improve their patients’ vision and lives in their upcoming role as an optical professional. A flyer detailing the scholarship program challenge can be found at Submissions will be evaluated by a panel of judges against the following criteria: creativity, strategic thinking and ethics. 

This year’s topic was inspired by research from Transitions Optical around the increased need for light protection due to changing consumer behaviour sparked by the global pandemic. According to recent research, six in ten eyeglass wearers reported spending more time on their digital devices and 75 percent of them have experienced issues as a result, including eye strain, eye fatigue, discomfort looking at bright screens and sleep interruption

Additionally, about 40 percent of eyeglass wearers also declared that the pandemic allowed them to spend more time going outdoors in the bright sunshine. Over half of them reported dealing with issues related to sun damage, such as headaches, eye fatigue, and trouble seeing in the bright sun. With nine out of ten people experiencing light sensitivity and one out of three claiming to be very light sensitive, demonstrating a clear need for light protection.  

“Over the past year, we’ve learned that changing consumer behaviour has had an impact on many people’s eye health and vision,” said Arnaud Rajchenbach, marketing manager, Transitions Optical in Canada. “Incoming optical industry professionals will benefit from having a good understanding of light protection needs of their patients, and of the solutions to help them improve their visual experience.” 

“The future of the optical industry is in the hands of the young people joining the field,” said Robert Dalton, Executive Director, OAC. “This scholarship topic is a great way to help students learn about light sensitivity and protection.”

All submissions should be sent to by November 1, 2021. The winners will be announced on November 15, 2021.