CHARLOTTE, N.C.—The National Optometric Association (NOA), a non-profit organization dedicated to addressing the needs of minority populations and serving underprivileged communities, is kicking off its annual convention, the 2023 NOA Convention this week, July 6 - July 9 at the Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort here. With a wide-ranging mix of programs, education and special events, the meeting promises to unite optometrists, optometry students, industry leaders, and community members in a shared mission to advance eyecare and promote inclusivity within the field of optometry.

The 2023 NOA Convention's engaging lineup of events, designed for "Empowering Vision, Fostering Diversity," will provide attendees with invaluable opportunities for education, networking, and meaningful impact. Highlights of the convention include:

Continuing Education: In line with the NOA's commitment to professional development, the convention will feature 16 hours of Florida and COPE (Council on Optometric Practitioner Education) approved Continuing Education sessions. Renowned industry experts will share their knowledge, ensuring attendees stay updated with the latest advancements in optometry.

Virtual iPoster Session: The NOA recognizes the importance of staying at the forefront of scientific advancements in optometry. Through an interactive virtual iPoster session sponsored by Hoya, attendees can explore cutting-edge research and engage in stimulating discussions with leading experts, fostering knowledge exchange and innovation.

Mobile Optometry Clinic: The NOA partners with the VSP mobile clinic every year with our “Serve Where You Go Event.” Serve Where you go upholds the commitment to making eyecare accessible to all, the NOA will host a mobile optometry clinic during the convention. This clinic aims to serve hundreds of needy individuals, addressing vision disparities and providing essential eyecare services to underserved communities.

Golf Tournament Fundraiser: Supporting aspiring optometrists from minority backgrounds, the NOA is organizing a golf tournament to raise scholarship funds. This charitable event encourages friendly competition and contributes to the future of optometry education, empowering individuals who aspire to make a difference in eyecare. Details about the July 6 Henry Moore Scholarship tournament are posted here.

Rooftop Networking Event: Bridging the gap between experienced optometrists and aspiring students, the NOA hosts an exclusive rooftop marking event. This gathering will provide a unique platform for optometry students and professionals to connect, fostering mentorship opportunities and collaboration that can shape the profession's future.

A Leisurely One-Day Trip to the Bahamas: In celebration of collective achievements and growth, participants will embark on an extraordinary one-day trip to the beautiful Bahamas.

Attendees will be privileged to enjoy an informative presentation and an exceptional dinner hosted by Johnson & Johnson Vision, a renowned industry partner committed to advancing eyecare.

Speed Netting Event: Black Eye Care Perspective is sponsoring an exciting speed netting event during the convention. This activity will allow participants to engage in meaningful conversations and connect with diverse professionals, fostering a network that champions inclusivity and diverse perspectives in eyecare.

"The 2023 NOA Convention represents our steadfast dedication to addressing the unique needs of minority populations within the optometry field," said Dr. Larry Jones, president of the NOA. "Through a diverse range of events, educational sessions, and impactful initiatives, we strive to foster a more inclusive and accessible eyecare landscape while empowering underrepresented individuals to pursue optometry as a rewarding career." The NOA invites optometrists, optometry students, industry professionals, and advocates who share the vision of promoting diversity and expanding access to eyecare to attend the 2023 NOA Convention. Further details are posted here.