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 2020 Students of Vision Scholarship Program. Currently enrolled (for the 2020-2021 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 envision the future of the vision care industry and their coming role in it 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 Jobson Optical and the Vision Council around the global COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on the industry and consumers. A survey by Jobson Optical Research showed that 58% of surveyed ECPs have been influenced into providing telehealth services because of COVID, and 62% of surveyed ECPs were planning to incorporate telehealth into future practice. Research by the Vision Council shows that consumers’ intentions to buy eyewear online has doubled since before COVID-19, and patients are using various technologies to communicate with their eye doctors and/or take care of their eye health, including social media, vision screening apps and digital communication methods.

“Changes are rapidly occurring in the vision care industry for both eye care professionals and consumers, from vision care needs to expectations for evolving technology,” said Patience Cook, director, North America marketing, Transitions Optical. “This year’s theme speaks especially well to Transitions Optical as a brand in the photochromic industry that constantly seeks to lead in innovation.”

“As the future of the vision care industry evolves, vision care professionals must also be constantly prepared to evaluate ways of also evolving in practice,” said Robert Dalton, Executive Director, OAC. “Our hope is that this year’s scholarship topic will give participants a head start towards imagining how to prepare for a promising and evolving future in the vision care industry.”

All submissions should be sent to by December 4, 2020. The winners will be announced on December 18, 2020.