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Former UMSL Resident Achieves National Prominence



Former UMSL Resident Achieves National Prominence


The soft toric and presbyopia lens education (STAPLE) program is an exceptional workshop-based program in which a prominent contact lens specialist is asked to provide a brief lecture followed by a hands-on workshop at Colleges of Optometry.  Every student has the opportunity to fit four toric lens designs (for the soft toric workshop) and four soft multifocal designs (for the presbyopia workshop).  Lenses are provided by Johnson & Johnson, Alcon, CooperVision, and Bausch + Lomb.  It is very noteworthy that three of the faculty that are part of the core faculty for STAPLE are former cornea and contact lens residents including Drs. Stephanie Woo(’12), Matt Kauffman(’13), and Rob Ensley(’14).   

The coordinator of the STAPLE program is Ursula Lotzkat who is especially impressed with our residency graduates: A hallmark of the STAPLE program is providing guest speakers from clinical practice who share their expertise in the fitting and management of astigmatic and presbyopic patients. Former UMSL cornea and contact lens residents fill this role perfectly. Their contact lens training is exceptional, plus since they have all participated in the program as residents they really understand how to reach the student audience with practical education.”  Director of Residencies, Dr. Julie DeKinder, agrees: “The STAPLE program has been a huge benefit to our students for many years.  The opportunity to fit several lenses in a short amount of time not only increases the student knowledge of available lens designs and applications, but also boosts their clinical confidence.  For the past several years we have been blessed with truly outstanding cornea and contact lens residents.  This is truly evident by seeing several of them return to our school and go to other schools as a presenter for the STAPLE program.”  

 Most recently, Dr. Kauffman – who is part of the most prominent specialty contact lens practice in Houston while also serving as a contact lens clinical instructor at the University of Houston College of Optometry - provided the soft toric seminar and workshop at UMSL on September 27th and did an exceptional job and is excited to be part their educational team. “I had the unique opportunity to experience the STAPLE program as both an optometry student and as a UMSL contact lens residency-trained optometrist. I can say from experience that the program is very beneficial to the optometry school education program. Completing a contact lens residency at UMSL gave me more in depth experience of fitting the toric and multifocal contact lens designs utilized in the STAPLE program and has taught me how to effectively communicate and teach those topics to optometry students.”  

Dr. Matt Kauffman and Dr. Ed Bennett

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