ARVO Foundation

Rewarding young scientists

ARVO Travel Grant recipients share how the funding impacted their careers

I am especially grateful for the opportunity to present my work in a paper session at the ARVO Annual Meeting. I made some very important connections at this meeting and the travel award contributed to these opportunities.

- ARVO Foundation Travel Grant: Fiona McDonnell, PhD, Duke University, U.S.

I have never had opportunities to meet with overseas researchers. At this ARVO meeting, I got a chance to speak with the author who wrote the paper in the field that I am studying. It was a great learning experience.

- ARVO Foundation Travel Grant: Kosuke Takahashi, Okayama University, Japan

Presenting my PhD findings on an international stage has strengthened my skills in public speaking and provided an opportunity to receive valuable feedback for my work. Further, I was able to meet with and learn from researchers in a similar field through their high quality talks and posters.

Thank you to the ARVO Foundation travel grant for the generous support, without which I may not have been able to attend ARVO 2018. It was a truly stimulating experience to be able to share ideas and learn from high-quality researchers from all around the world, and it is one that I will remember for the rest of my career.

- ARVO Foundation Travel Grant, Jessica Tang, BMedSc, MBBS (hon), University of Melbourne, Australia

Attending the ARVO 2018 meeting allowed me to share my work with a diverse international audience. This gave me the invaluable experience of giving an oral presentation in a large international meeting while also allowing me to gather helpful feedback on my work. These have helped me to think more critically about my own work and to design experiments to address outstanding issues in the project. I was also able to make new connections as well as rekindle old connections with colleagues in the field.

- Joanne G. Angle Travel Grant, Jacob Heng, MBChB, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, U.S.

Attending the ARVO meeting allowed me to present my research as well as network with other ophthalmologists and those in the vision sciences — two invaluable things for a medical student hoping to have a career in ophthalmology upon graduation.

- Knights Templar Eye Foundation Travel Grant, Alejandra Maiz, BS, The Ohio State University, U.S.

It is difficult for a resident to come up with the funds to travel for a conference even if accepted, and the grant alleviated a significant financial burden. The meeting was extremely worthwhile for me to further develop my career in academic ophthalmology. I learned many new research opportunities at the meeting and it reinvigorated my motivations to continue vision research to improve patient care.

- Knights Templar Eye Foundation Travel Grant, Masako Chen, MD, New York Eye and Ear Infirmary, U.S.

As a Member-in-training, this represented a large opportunity for me by allowing me to meet new colleagues, collaborators and future employers in the field. In addition, by being allowed to attend in person, I was able to compete in the Members-in-training poster competition and ultimately win the best poster award for my section. I am very grateful for these opportunities ARVO Foundation has provided me, and I hope it will continue to support the efforts of future junior researchers such as myself.

- Knights Templar Eye Foundation Travel Grant, Min Chen, PhD, University of Pennsylvania, U.S.

I am incredibly grateful and humbled that my research was chosen to receive a travel grant. This opportunity to attend ARVO and present my research provided such a great learning experience for me as it was my first major conference in which I presented a poster. I learned a lot in this process and I feel more confident to present in future conferences. I also feel encouraged to continue to expand on the research that I am doing in order to create further impact in the research community and beyond. It was also wonderful to learn about all the other incredible research projects that other researcher were pursuing. I am thankful for such a great opportunity and greatly appreciate recognition of my research. I will continue to work hard in the future.

- Knights Templar Eye Foundation Travel Grant, Catherine He, BA, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, U.S.

My first ARVO meeting was a wonderful experience. It was my first podium presentation and my first ophthalmology conference as an ophthalmology resident. Attending ARVO was a benefit in many ways including increased appreciation and desire to pursue research in ophthalmology, a better understanding of how to collaborate on projects and an increased awareness of the basic science arm of vision research.

- Knights Templar Eye Foundation Travel Grant, Ryan Shields, MD, Stanford, U.S.

Attending ARVO this year very much helped me at a critical time in my career. I have just completed my PhD and am in the planning stages for a postdoctoral clinician-scientist research grant. By attending the ARVO Annual Meeting in person, I was able to see the breadth of international research in my field and I could talk to potential collaborators from around the world. It was also brilliant to be able to get feedback on my own research work that I presented as a poster.

- WEAVR Travel Grant, Jaya Chidambaram, MBBS, MRCOphth, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, U.K.

The conference was a unique opportunity not only to disseminate my research but also meet and learn from ophthalmologists across institutions and countries. I used this opportunity to the fullest, taking time to learn more about my own research field but also explore the multitude of others represented at the conference. I look forward to attending ARVO again in the future with new research!

- Retina Research Foundation/ Joseph M. and Eula C. Lawrence Travel Grant, Isaac Bleicher, BS, MD, Duke University, U.S.

I'm in the last year of my PhD with one more experiment to optimize before I can run it and graduate. Going to the ARVO Annual Meeting put me in contact with other scientists who have already optimized the experiment, giving me invaluable advice that will help me complete my degree.

- Retina Research Foundation/ Joseph M. and Eula C. Lawrence Travel Grant, Melissa Cooper, PhD candidate, B.S., Vanderbilt University, U.S.