Resident Ambassador Program

Sponsored by the Illinois Society of Eye Physicians & Surgeons
in conjunction with the American Academy of Ophthalmology

Background Information

Each year the American Academy of Ophthalmology holds an Advocacy Day and Mid-Year Forum in Washington, DC. The purpose of this event is to look at and discuss the concerns facing us as physicians, and to use our constructive energy to create solutions. During Advocacy Day, residents who participate in the "Ambassador" program are placed in teams with ophthalmologists from their local area and have the opportunity to meet with their senators and representatives. They will get a first-hand experience with the political process and how to communicate effectively as a physician regarding the concerns we have about the healthcare system as it pertains to our patients. Following Advocacy Day is the Mid-Year Forum which is a two day conference. It is a symposium for the leadership of the Academy and allied organizations to identify and discuss critical issues facing ophthalmology; to provide input and advice to the Academy Board of Trustees; and to encourage cross-fertilization, communication, and cooperation among the leadership in ophthalmology. This is a great experience for any resident interested in learning more about political advocacy, leadership, and healthcare issues.

An Opportunity for Illinois Residents in Training

Each year the Illinois Association of Ophthalmology financially supports several residents as our "Ambassadors" to the AAO Advocacy Day and Mid Year Forum.  The ISEPS will provide a stipend to help cover airfare and hotel.  We strongly encourage the resident's training program to consider funding any additional expenses over and above the ISEPS funding.

Who is eligible to apply?

Any resident currently enrolled in an accredited ophthalmology residency program in Illinois.

When is it?

The 2018 Advocacy Day and MidYear Forum is April 19-21, 2018, in Washington, D.C.

What are the requirements to apply to be an ambassador?

To apply, send an email to the ISEPS administrative office (  In addition to your contact information, be sure to identify your training program and your year of residence.  Then please write a short statement of up to 300 words about why you would like to attend the meeting in Washington as an Illinois Resident Ambassador.

If selected, you will be expected to make a short presentation to your fellow residents at your specific program and/oror at  the CCO conferences to share your experiences.  Also, we require that you submit a short witten statement describing your experience to the ISEPS Board.  The deadline for the application is March 1st, 2018.  We encourage and welcome all residents to apply and to be involved with the ISEPS. If you have any questions, feel free to contact the ISEPS executive director, Rich Paul, at

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