Bascom Palmer Eye Institute Launches Dynamic New Master’s Degree

Bascom Palmer Eye Institute — the global leader in eye care, vision research and ophthalmology education — has launched the world’s first Master’s degree in Vision Science and Investigative Ophthalmology (MVSIO). This innovative program offers comprehensive training in ophthalmic translational research, problem-based learning, management and a skill set available only at Bascom Palmer.

Led by Bascom Palmer’s world-class faculty and supported by leading-edge technology, the goal of the unique MVSIO degree is to educate the next generation of global leaders in ophthalmology, including clinicians and vision researchers. The interdisciplinary program focuses on science and laboratory research, research management, and administrative skills to sharpen the critical thinking and communication expertise essential for careers within the realm of ophthalmology.

Bascom Palmer is internationally recognized as an outstanding teaching, research and patient care center, and its training programs are among the best in the world. As the Department of Ophthalmology at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, it is committed to improving sight, preventing blindness and advancing ophthalmic knowledge.

This August, five students will begin the two-year MVSIO program. The inaugural class includes medical doctors with degrees from the University of California San Diego School of Medicine; Universidad Iberoamerica, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic; Alfaisal University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; Tripoli University, Libya; and Alexandria University, Egypt.

Much of the MVSIO program takes place within the Dr. Nasser Ibrahim Al-Rashid Orbital Vision Center located in the Evelyn F. and William L. McKnight Vision Research Center on the Miller School campus.

The center’s facility was made possible thanks to a transformative $10 million gift from Dr. Nasser Ibrahim Al-Rashid and his children: Nourah Caskey, Ramzi Al-Rashid, Salman Al-Rashid, Ibrahim Al-Rashid and Mohammad N. Al-Rashid. During a recent dedication ceremony for the eponymous center, the Al-Rashid sons, Ibrahim, Mohammad and Salman, made an additional commitment of $2.5M to continue to propel the vision research engine.

“The MVSIO program would not be possible without the generosity of the Al-Rashid family,” said Sanjoy K. Bhattacharya, Ph.D., M.Tech., professor of ophthalmology and director of the MVSIO graduate program. “Their support allows Bascom Palmer to attract exceptional graduate students from every corner of the globe to realize their full potential in eye and vision science.”

Longtime University of Miami supporters, Dr. Nasser Ibrahim Al-Rashid received an honorary doctor of science degree from the University in 2008. Furthermore, two of Dr. Al-Rashid’s sons are UM graduates: Fahad Al-Rashid, A.B. 2005, Marine Science Affairs; and Ibrahim Al-Rashid, B.B.A. 2006, Entrepreneurship.

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