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Discovering the OPS at a Mid-Year Meeting

Posted By Tom Reeves, Friday, March 23, 2012
Updated: Friday, March 23, 2012

I discovered the Ophthalmic Photographers’ Society after I saw a job listing for ophthalmic photography at a major hospital. Up until that point, I had worked as a photographer in portrait studios, wedding venues, architectural developments, and the great outdoors, but had never considered work as a biomedical photographer. I did some research and quickly found the OPS website. When I considered the fascinating parallels between digital cameras and the photoreceptors in our eyes, I knew I had found the perfect career.

In 2009, I enrolled in an Ophthalmic Medical Technology program in Portland, Oregon. During my first year there, I received a brochure detailing the 2011 OPS Midyear Program that was being held in Seattle. I was still a student and had little experience, so I made some calls and wrote to the organizing staff. Their positive responses inspired me to get involved. I volunteered to help move equipment and to distribute and collect evaluation cards for the workshops and lectures. Helping out was a rewarding experience that gave me an opportunity to interact with everyone at the conference.

Pictured above: Author of this blog entry, Tom Reeves, helping out at the Mid-year meeting                                      Pictured below: Sarah Moyer, co-chair of the PDC, discussing  with Tom how to get involved in the OPS

The people I met were truly exceptional individuals. From the president of the OPS, Paula Morris, and the program chair, Lydia Dimmer, to the many attending photographers and technicians, everyone took an interest in making me feel welcome. During the lectures and workshops and even the reception afterwards, I could see real enthusiasm about sharing knowledge of photography and getting to know one another for the benefit of an enriched society. I am honored to have found a group of such talented individuals who share these interests.

My hope as an artist is to help people see the world with new clarity, and fortunately my goals as an ophthalmic imaging specialist contribute to making that hope a reality. Attending my first OPS program was truly inspirational and educational, and I am excited to be involved with the society for years to come. Meeting regularly as a community of eye imaging experts helps us all become more skillful and knowledgeable, and that makes us even more valuable as personnel in the field of ophthalmology.



About the Author: Tom Reeves is a student at the Ophthalmic Medical Technology program at PCC in Portland, Oregon.  He will be graduating with an A.A.S. degree and a COT certification in June 2012.  Tom is currently looking for job opportunities in New York City.

Tags:  Educational Meeting  Mid-Year 

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Comments on this post...

Denice A. Barsness, CRA, COMT, ROUB, CDOS, FOPS says...
Posted Friday, March 23, 2012
Tom, loved your post! So interesting to hear how others got into this business. As a 34 + year lifer perhaps I should share MY story, and will consider doing so soon.

Denice Barsness, San Francisco
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James Soque CRA OCT-C COA FOPS says...
Posted Monday, March 26, 2012
Hi Tom,
We can only hope that you take with you the wealth of knowledge that all Ophthalmic Photographers will utilize in their praceice of our profession.
Wonderful meeting you in Seattle in 2011 and I look forward to your efforts at the Mid-Year in Chapel Hill in June, and in Chicago in November 2012!
Welcome Aboard!
Jim Soque, Long Island, New York
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Paula F. Morris CRA FOPS says...
Posted Thursday, March 29, 2012
Hey, Tom!
Your post took me back to the great meeting Lydia and her crew held last year in Seattle! It really was a wonderful, educational weekend - I hadn't hung out in a bowling alley for a long time!
Hope you can join us in Chapel Hill for this year's mid-year meeting!
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Stephanie J. Attebery says...
Posted Monday, April 9, 2012
I hope you are doing well, and was pleased to get to meet you at the Seattle Midyear last spring. You were indeed a big help in getting things accomplished during the meeting! Midyear meetings definitely provide a unique experience from the larger annual programs, in that you often have more face time to connect with fellow students and instructors, and meet many people who share a similar geographic area in common. My first midyear meeting provided me with the opportunity to take on MORE volunteer tasks, such as AV support, and boosted my confidence and excitement to be more involved! Thanks for sharing your experience with the group.
Stephanie Attebery
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Tom Reeves CRA COT says...
Posted Friday, April 13, 2012
Thank you for all of your kind responses, friends and colleagues!

Denice, I would love to hear your story-- especially about how you got all those certifications! :)

James and Paula, thanks for the warm welcome. I'd love to make it to Chapel Hill but I can't-- see you in Chicago for sure!

Stephanie, thanks for being an inspiration! I'm glad the midyear was the first meeting I attended, and I look forward to seeing what it's like in Chicago once I'm graduated and working in the field.
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