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Bill Mattingly Memorial Scholarship

2020 Recipients

Image of Dr. Lauren Nicholas   Image of Rachel Kim 

Dr. Lauren Nicholas                               Rachel Kim


Dr. Lauren Nicholas was awarded a $2500 scholarship in the Spring of 2020. A graduate of the New England College of Optometry, Dr. Nicholas is currently a Low Vision Resident at Nova Southeastern University.  She became interested in low vision during her specialty contact lens rotation when a patient presented with bilateral corneal transplants after a history of keratoconus.  Tremors didn't allow her patient to insert the lens appropriately so she was referred to the low vision clinic where a hand-held magnifier enabled her patient to see food labels again. As Lauren wrote, "what may sound like a small feat, was of the utmost importance to this patient because it allowed her to return to her job as a cashier, and gave her life purpose again." Lauren enjoys teaching third year optometry students in the low vision laboratory and serving as a clinical preceptor for fourth year students.  Dr. Nicholas has submitted a poster to AAO outlining a patient who suffered from Usher syndrom, a variant of RP that presents with hearing loss.  She also presented a grand rounds lecture on how to establish if a low vision patient is eligible to drive as well as how to write an IEP for school-aged low vision patients.  Dr. Nicholas' future is bright and she hopes to go into private practice, specializing in low vision and specialty contact lens patients.


Optometry student Rachel Kim was awarded a $1000 scholarship in the Spring of 2020. She is a fourth year student at the University of California Berkeley School of Optometry.  Her passion for low vision is driven by the fact that her mother lost vision in her left eye when she was young.  Rachel is an excellent student and has received multiple scholarships including the Curtis W. Keswick Alumni VA Residency Low Vision Award, The Jimmy and Lillian Low Scholarship, and the Dorothy Bates Searls Endowed Scholarship.  She prepared two AAO publication-quality case reports for chiefs of both the VA Monterey and UC Berkeley School of Optometry, one on Pituitary Adenomas and the other on Superior Oblique Palsies. It is her goal "to exemplify the importance of empathy to fellow optometry students within the low vision community...just like my mom's story, many patients' low vision status is an outcome of unfortunate events, whether it involves an accident, malpractice, or a rare genetic condition."  

  If you have any questions regarding the scholarship, or to make a donation to the scholarship fund please contact Julie Mattingly.

Phone: 888-642-0842 ext. 6

Email: julie@mattinglylowvision.com



Click here to read more about Bill Mattingly’s legacy in low vision


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