Becoming a College Council member is a great opportunity to represent your colleagues, promote your profession and help shape the future of optometry.
Our Council sets the strategic and professional direction of the College, ensuring that it is informed by the views of a cross-section of members.
We believe in professional excellence in eye health.
We are the professional body for optometry. We promote professional excellence in eye health by qualifying the profession and delivering guidance, development and training to ensure optometrists provide the best possible care. We promote excellence through the College’s affixes, by building the evidence base for optometry, and raising awareness of the profession with the public, commissioners and health care professionals.
Our Council members ensure that we remain true to our principles and accountable to our members by:
- bringing members’ views to the attention of the College
- sharing the College’s thinking, direction and activity within the region
- providing leadership for their region by participating in local meetings as the representative of the College
- participating in Council meetings three times each year – including the election meeting held at the College’s annual conference
- electing the President, Vice President and Trustees
- having the opportunity to join one of the College’s committees, working groups or reference groups
- supporting College events in their region
- contributing to the College’s public relations activity including acting as a spokesperson.
To find out more about what it means to be a College Council member, please read the role description.
There is a maximum of 40 Council members, 35 of whom are elected by members, four who are nominated by the College’s Lay Advisory Panel and one who is nominated by the Optometry Schools Council. Council membership is a voluntary (unpaid) role and reasonable expenses for travel, accommodation, subsistence and childcare will be reimbursed by the College.
Your opportunity to shape your profession
We are currently calling for nominations for Council members to represent fellow College members in the following regions:
- Northern Ireland
- South East
- South West
- West Midlands
College members in these regions are encouraged to put themselves forward for election. This is a fantastic opportunity to get involved and make a difference to your profession and to eye care provision in the UK.
Read what Professor Kathryn Saunders FCOptom says about being a College Council member:
Professor Kathryn Saunders FCOptom joined the College Council in 2006 to represent members in Northern Ireland. Here, she explains what motivated her to stand for election, and the effect it has had on her career.
“I put myself up for election to the Council in order to find out more about the College and what it did, and also to find out more about what was happening in the profession across the UK. I had been the recipient of a College postgraduate research scholarship which enabled me to do a PhD at Cardiff University - and had been a College member all my career - so I was also keen to try and give something back.
“I also wanted to see if I could influence the College in widening its vision to better include and recognise optometrists working in all parts of the UK. I think this has happened over the last few years, particularly with the introduction of the regional events, which Council suggested and helped to develop.
“Being a College Council member has given me the opportunity to meet and network with a wide variety of members of the optometric and other professions. You always learn something from talking to and working with other people, especially when they have a different background, training or area of practice from yourself.
“If you’re considering becoming a Council member, I say go for it!”
You can find information on College Council on the College website.
Download the list of Council vacancies 2018
Submission of nominations close on 5pm on Friday 17 November.