IACLE calls for entries for 2021 contact lens educator of the year awards

The association has encouraged members to consider applying or nominating someone for the award

The International Association of Contact Lens Educators (IACLE) has opened entries for its 2021 contact lens educator of the year awards.

The awards, sponsored by CooperVision, recognise and award achievements in contact lens education.

The accolade will be awarded to three individuals, one from each of IACLE’s three global regions: the Americas, Asia Pacific and Europe/Africa – Middle East.

Winners each receive a bursary of up to US$3,000 (approximately £2215) towards the cost of attending an international meeting. They will also be able to use the title of 2021 IACLE Contact Lens Educator of the Year for their region.

The awards are open to all contact lens educators who have been IACLE members for at least three years. Applicants can nominate themselves, or be nominated by another member, their IACLE regional/country co-ordinator or IACLE staff. Applicants must demonstrate impact on their institutions and ways they inspired students to become future contact lens practitioners.

The deadline for entries for the awards is Sunday 31 January 2021.

IACLE president Dr Shehzad Naroo said: “We are proud to be able to continue to offer the IACLE contact lens educator of the year awards for our three global regions.”

Dr Naroo added that all members are encouraged to consider applying or to nominate someone for the award.

The 2020 winners, Jo Underwood from the UK, Professor Renée Reeder from the USA, and Professor Bariah Mohd Ali from Malaysia will also receive their awards at meetings in 2021, when restrictions allow.

Gary Orsborn, OD, vice president of global professional, medical and clinical affairs for CooperVision, said of the awards: “Continuous advancement in contact lens technology has made it more important than ever for students to receive focused education in this area of education and practice experience.”

He added: “CooperVision is proud to support IACLE each year in recognising outstanding contact lens educators for their dedication to the future of the profession.”

The IACLE Travel Awards, which provide bursaries of up to $3,000, allowing IACLE educator members to attend international meetings, will not be held in 2021 due to the pandemic.

The three 2020 Travel Award recipients, Dr Elizabeth Chetty from South Africa, Professor Martin Guzmán from Venezuela and associate professor Nirav Mehta from India, will receive their awards at an international meeting in 2021, dependant on COVID-19 restrictions.

Image: IACLE award winners in 2018