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Where were you last October?

Posted By Robert Shutt, Friday, April 27, 2012
Updated: Friday, April 27, 2012

Question:  Where were you last October?

Well, many of us attended our Annual OPS Educational Program in sunny Orlando, FL.  For me personally, it was a milestone.  The reason being....this was the first time I volunteered to give a lecture AND conduct a workshop.  The experience was quite rewarding, but it didn't come without challenges.


Hurdle #1 The subject:  Stratus OCT - Time domain. 

Photo Credit: ERM - Chuck Hamm

Now I know what you're thinking..."That's easy! Everyone knows Stratus!” - Right? Well that's exactly my point! EVERYONE knows Stratus. Got Stratus? Not only do we, "got Stratus", most of us "got” Cirrus, Spectralis and other HD-OCT's too! So the challenge was to try to make this topic interesting and fresh. My approach was simple: Don't reinvent the wheel. Instead, explain the who, what, where, when and why of OCT; the fundamental obligation of any good teacher, speaker or lecturer. So, I applied it to myself.


Hurdle #2 (and by far the BIGGER challenge!) The Audience!


It's rather intimidating to think about, so I chose not to; but invariably in every classroom someone sitting there knows as much if not more about the subject than I. Awkward! I am most grateful that in my class room no one put me on the spot or asked the million dollar question that cost more than 5 million to answer. Thank you! So, whether or not they knew more than I did about my subject, I'll never know. (However, if any attendee would like to comment, I would love to hear your feedback!) In any case, I got over this hurdle too.


By remembering the old adage: If you want to perform in Carnegie Hall you must practice, practice, practice!  Even doing this doesn't guarantee success as I quickly found out when my Power Point TM  file for the presentation had been corrupted! It was rendered completely useless! Got stress? So, be resourceful. Always, and I emphasize ALWAYS have a plan "B". My plan B was to have a hard copy of my presentation available. Staples was kind enough to make me several copies and graciously took my $100 dollar bill, and said; 'Yeah that was easy'.


All in all, was a pleasurable experience, one that I will gladly do again thanks to the generous words of commendation and the willing support of my fellow workshop instructors. 

So, OPS-ers....Would you like to give a lecture, coordinate a workshop, or instruct at a workshop at the Annual Program in Chicago this coming November? You will be faced with some challenges, but I can guarantee the rewards will far outweigh the challenges. If you are interested, please contact Dennis Thayer (the Education Chair) at Also, please comment below if you have something to share about your experience as an OPS speaker, workshop coordinator, or workshop instructor.


Photo Credit: Healed CNV - LeRoy Judkins


Robert Shutt CRA, OCT-C presently works for Danbury Eye Physicians and Surgeons, CT largest multi-specialty practice. Also, recently invited to serve on the OPS' Professional Development Committee. Enjoys traveling, drumming and, of course, photography.

Tags:  blog  Educational Meeting  Ice Breakers  PDC  Professional Development Committee  Study 

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Comments on this post...

Elizabeth L. Affel MT MS OCT-C CDOS ROUB COA FOPS says...
Posted Friday, April 27, 2012
What a wonderful post! You are so right, as "practice makes perfect" is really true! Thank you for volunteering your time and knowledge to help the OPS! Your comments are right on about challenging ourselves and giving a lecture or workshop!
Libba Affel
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Hector M. Mendez-Caratini says...
Posted Friday, May 4, 2012
Keep up the good work!
Please, volunteer again.
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