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March 29, 2013

College Announces Speaker and Honorary Degree Recipient for 2013 Commencement

SUNY College of Optometry has announced that Dr. Melvin Shipp (pictured at left) will be the speaker for the 2013 commencement this June. Dr. Shipp has been the dean of The Ohio State University College of Optometry since 2004. In 2011, he was named president of the American Public Health Association (APHA), the first optometrist to lead the world’s oldest, largest and most diverse organization of public health professionals. Prior to his arrival to OSU, Dr. Shipp was a member of the faculty and the assistant dean for clinical services and director of clinics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UABSO). Dr. Shipp has served as a consultant, panelist and reviewer for several federal institutions notably: the Food and Drug Administration, Health Resources and Services Administration, and National Eye Institute (NEI) of the National Institutes of Health. Dr. Shipp served on the NEI National Advisory Eye Council and was a member of the NEI Planning Committee for the National Eye Health Education Project (NEHEP). Dr. Shipp is also a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry (AAO), and a Diplomate and former Chair of the Public Health and Environmental Optometry Section. Dr. Shipp’s research interests include: the evaluation of the impact of vision related public policy and traffic safety, the reduction of racial and ethnic eye and vision health disparities, and relationships between blood homocysteine levels and premature presbyopia. Dr. Shipp received the Doctor of Optometry (OD) from Indiana University, the Master of Public Health (MPH) from Harvard University, and the Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) from the University of Michigan. Dr. Shipp is only the second optometrist to receive the DrPH degree; he is the first to do so through the highly competitive Pew Health Policy Doctoral Fellowship Program at the University of Michigan.

Dr. Jia Qu (pictured at left), Professor and President of the Wenzhou Medical College (WMC) in Wenzhou, China, will received the honorary degree of Doctor of Science at June's commencement. Dr. Qu has been an intellectual leader in vision research and a visionary in the development of eye care services in China. Dr. Qu’s work, while wide ranging, has focused on myopia development and the genetic basis of ocular diseases including Leber’s Optic Neuropathy and Age-Related Macular Degeneration. Dr. Qu was recognized in 2005 by Zhejiang Province receiving its most “Outstanding Scientist Award”. 

Under Dr. Qu's leadership over the past twenty-five years, WMC has emerged as an intellectual leader nationally and internationally in optometry and ophthalmology. The WMC program has multiple international partners in both the research and education realms and it has been recognized broadly in China not only for its scientific contributions, but also for its innovative efforts to enhance the quality of eye care in China. Dr. Qu currently serves as the Vice-Chair of the Chinese Society of Ophthalmology.