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First MS Degree Awarded by Optometry College


The first Master of Science degree in Vision Science was conferred upon, Rachelle J. Lin, B.S., B.A., at the 109th Commencement Exercise of the Southern California College of Optometry at Marshall B. Ketchum University. Lin, a member of the Class of 2013, also received her Doctor of Optometry degree at the College's May 23 event. She was concurrently enrolled in both programs.

The Master of Science program was started at the College in 2010 for the purpose of training optometrists to become teachers and/or researchers. Dr. Lin began the program in the Summer of 2011 and completed the coursework by the Spring of 2012. Her research was conducted under the guidance of Assistant Professor and Thesis Advisor Jason S. Ng, O.D., Ph.D., and with the assistance of Professor James E. Bailey, O.D., Ph.D., and Associate Professor Lawrence R. Stark, Ph.D. The Master's thesis, "Mesopic visual acuity: Determinants, repeatability, and recommendations for testing standardizations," demonstrated that the main cause of decreased vision in low lighting levels is due to the light level itself which causes neural changes in the eye and not focusing errors or changes in pupil size.

Dr. Lin will be continuing her training in a one-year residency program in Low Vision at the Long Beach Veterans Administration Healthcare System, Long Beach, CA.  She plans on a teaching career in optometric education.