Mission Statement

To continue to empower female early career researchers and to facilitate skill development and networking opportunities for women beginning their journey into vision-related careers.

Early Career Research Co-Lead: Bethany Higgins

Bethany, the Women In Vision UK Lead for Early Career Research, is committed to equality in vision, increasing female representation in vision science and empowering female early career researchers. She has been an Early Career Representative for WVUK since 2019 and developed and hosted the Staying Connected Webinar Series and the WVUK Annual Meeting 2020.

Bethany was awarded a BSc (Hons) in Psychology and Cognitive Neuroscience from the University of Nottingham where she discovered her interest in vision research and neuroimaging. She was subsequently awarded a scholarship to undertake an MRes at The University Nottingham in the department of Radiological Sciences. Her research focussed on the use of tensor imaging of paediatric tumours for visual outcome prediction.

Bethany has now moved to London to join the Crabb Lab, where she is undertaking a PhD in Optometry and Visual Sciences. Bethany's current research interests are Age-related Macular Degeneration, Charles Bonnet Syndrome and visual function measures such as dark adaptation. She is also the recipient of The 2021 Master’s Medal from The Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers

She has collated a list of useful online resources that benefit ECRs and liaises with the Research Leads to produce the quarterly research newsletter. Bethany, the lead, plans to continue to put together more relevant virtual webinars and workshop opportunities that will benefit our early career membership.

Early Career Research Co-Lead: Lindsay Rountree

Lindsay is very enthusiastic to undertake her new role as the Women In Vision UK Co-Lead for Early Career Research. Lindsay graduated from Cardiff University in 2006 with a degree in Optometry and Vision Sciences, and worked in independent high street practice for several years, where she was involved in diabetic retinopathy screening, OPwSI clinics, and referral triaging for the local area.

Although she has been a qualified optometrist for many years, she is relatively new to research, gaining her PhD from Cardiff University in 2018 and receiving the 2018 Master’s Medal from the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers for research conducted as part of this. She undertook a post-doc at Aston University, and now works as a lecturer in optometry at the University of Bradford. Her main research interest at the moment is the visual impact of ocular disease, although she is also involved in contact lens research and public health awareness.

She has previously been involved in organising the British Congress of Optometry and Vision Science (BCOVS) annual conference, and is currently an editorial board member for Optometry in Practice, one of the College of Optometrists’ journals.