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Awards and Prizes

RCOphth offers a wide range of travel awards and clinical/research fellowships, details of which are listed below.  Names of winners are published annually unless individual opt-out requests are received by the College.

All award recipients are required to submit a written report within three months of the completion of their Fellowship/research, to be circulated to the RCOphth Education Committee and the awarding body.  Please review the enclosed report format guidance.

Please direct any Awards & Scholarship enquiries to Miss Imogen Armstrong, Examinations, Education and Training Administrator: imogen.armstrong@rcophth.ac.uk .

Open Awards

Closed Awards

  • The Ophthalmology Clinical Research Training Fellowship 2015
  • Bayer Award 2015
  • Keeler Scholarship 2016
  • Essay Prize for Foundation Doctors 2016
  • Dorey Bequest Sir William Lister Awards 2016
  • Ethicon Foundation Fund 2016
  • Fight for Sight Award 2017
  • IGA Research Awards Application Form – 2017


Open Awards – Information to apply Closing Date

Ophthalmology Trainee Research Network Awards

Applications are invited from trainee ophthalmologists working throughout the UK for three Ophthalmology Trainee Research Network Awards each of £5,000. The awards will be made to support only research studies in subject areas that fall within the remit of the Fight for Sight mission. All studies supported by this award must be adopted onto the NIHR Portfolio. The applicant will be

i. Chief Investigator of the study
ii. Have initiated/co-initiated the study with other trainee ophthalmologists
iii. An ophthalmologist in training working in an NHS Acute Trust that delivers eye care services
iv. A member of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists

The duration of the research project will be two years. The award cannot be used to pay for salaries of trainee or consultant ophthalmologists.

The award will be made by a committee appointed by the Trustees of Fight for Sight that includes representatives of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists. The committee may decide to invite applicants for interview (date to be confirmed after the closing date). The successful applicants will be awarded the prize at The Royal College of Ophthalmologists Admissions Ceremony in September 2017.

Further information about the award can be found on Fight for Sight’s website: http://www.fightforsight.org.uk/apply-for-funding/funding-opportunities/ophthalmology-trainee-research-network-awards/.

All applications must be submitted directly to Fight for Sight: caroline@fightforsight.org.uk

Friday 17 Mar 2017

The Royal College of Ophthalmologists and The National Institute for Health Research Researcher of the Year Awards

The Royal College of Ophthalmologists and The National Institute for Health Research are pleased to announce the launch of a new national award scheme to recognise outstanding contribution to clinical research by fellows /members of the College. The RCOphth/NIHR clinical researcher of the year award is launched this year commemorating 10 years of the NIHR clinical research network (CRN).
Applications are sought from Members and Fellows of the College who are engaged in clinical research in the course of their NHS duties. Clinical research is important for NHS in establishing care standards, generating or confirming evidence for clinical care and developing new therapeutic options for our patients. There are numerous examples where clinical research in the NHS has helped generate evidence and enhance clinical care to reduce burden of blindness.

The RCOphth in collaboration with the NIHR has developed this award scheme to recognise important contribution the Fellows and Members of the College make. The awards will be in three categories:

1.one consultant award for non-commercial research, where a consultant has made a significant contribution to an NIHR portfolio study

2. one consultant award for Commercial (industry sponsored) research, for contribution to an NIHR portfolio commercial study

3. one trainee/career grade award for outstanding contribution made by a trainee or career grade ophthalmologist

Each awardee will receive certificate of achievement and complementary registration for the RCOphth Congress for the first three days of the Congress (Monday 22 May to Wednesday 24 May 2017) and will be expected to attend the award ceremony at the RCOphth Annual Congress on Wednesday 24 May 2017 at 11:45 at the ACC Liverpool.

Applicants should be research-active NHS ophthalmologists, members or fellows of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists and NOT hold a substantive academic appointment.

A joint panel of NIHR and RCOphth representatives will judge the winner of the awards.

RCOphth NIHR Researcher of the Year Award Application Form or contact ian.nickson@nihr.ac.uk with any questions

 Monday 3 April 2017

Please send completed applications to ian.nickson@nihr.ac.uk

Patrick Trevor-Roper Award 2017

Three awards of £550 each. Applications are invited for this award in Ophthalmology, which is open to all undergraduate medical students from the UK and  Eire only with an interest in the subspecialty.

The award may be used to fund electives in Ophthalmology and may be spent on travelling or subsistence.  Retrospective applications will not be considered.  Funds are awarded for electives to be carried out in the 12 months following the closing date.  The only exception to this rule is if applicants start the elective immediately before the closing date and the elective is still ongoing at that point.

Monday 22 May 2017
Closed Awards

The Ophthalmology Clinical Research Training Fellowship 2015

The Clinical Research Training Fellowships, supported by the Medical Research Council (MRC), The Royal College of Ophthalmologists and Novartis Pharmaceuticals Ltd, focus on ophthalmology research training within the United Kingdom. The programme aims to develop research leaders of the future, address strategic research skills and support talented individuals at critical points in their career as they develop and establish themselves.The MRC’s Clinical Research Training Fellowships provide up to three years’ support for clinically qualified, active professionals to undertake specialised or further research training in the bio-medical sciences within the United Kingdom.

Up to two fellowships may be made available per year and are open to all UK-based ophthalmologists.  All applications must be submitted via the Joint Electronic Submission system (Je-S) that is managed by the MRC.  Please click here www.mrc.ac.uk/skills-careers/fellowships/clinical-fellowships/clinical-research-training-fellowship-crtf/ for additional information and to upload the 36-page Fellowship Handbook for Applicants, joint funding form and Fellowship CV template.

Second call opens: 29 July 2015
Submissions by 4pm: 9 September 2015
Short listing: February 2016
Interviews: 2 – 3 March 2016
Take up dates: April 2016 to September 2016

4pm, 9 Sept 2015 (Closed)

Bayer Educational Grant Awards

Multiple awards, variant on location. Applications are invited for grants from the Bayer Educational Grant Fund.

This grant has been established from 2014 by the generosity of Bayer for the purpose of supporting Ophthalmologists to present work at educational meetings in the UK and overseas. It is intended that this will promote involvement in research, service development and audit for the benefit of the UK National Health Service.

Applications are welcome from any grade of ophthalmologist working in the UK. Applications will only be considered from those who are current and paid up Fellows, Members or Affiliate Members of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists.

This award is currently on hold – further information will be published at a future date

Keeler Scholarship 2016

One award of up to £30,000. The Keeler Scholarship is awarded every two years. The next award will be in 2018.

A shortlist of candidates will be invited to interview

To enable the Keeler Scholar, for the subsequent benefit of ophthalmology in the UK, to study, research or acquire special skills, knowledge or experience at a suitable location in the United Kingdom or elsewhere for a minimum period of six months.

Applicants must be Fellows, Members or Affiliates of The Royal College of Ophthalmologists, those Fellows, Members and Affiliates being in good standing.

Potential applicants who have received substantial (usually meaning amounts greater than the value of the scholarship) funding for their project are not eligible for the Keeler Scholarship.

The Trustees will give special consideration to candidates intending to make a career in ophthalmology in the United Kingdom. Applicants may apply retrospectively but should not be more than 3 months into the fellowship for which they are applying for support by the closing date.

Wednesday 3 Feb 2016 (Closed)

Dorey Bequest & Sir William Lister Travel Awards 2016

Multiple awards of £300 – £600

The award is for ophthalmologists in training who are citizens of the United Kingdom as well as Members, Affiliates or Fellows of the Royal College of Ophthalmologists, in good standing.

The number and value of the awards will be determined by the state of the funds and the candidate’s requirements; the amount awarded is generally between £300 and £600. Retrospective applications will not be considered.

Wednesday       28 Sept 2016 (Closed)

Essay Prize for Foundation Doctors 2016

The award is for all those currently in a UK Foundation Programme (F1, F2) at the time of submission.

The winners of 2nd and 3rd place will be presented with certificates and the 1st prize will have free entry into the Royal College of Ophthalmologists Annual Congress to present work as a poster and will be invited to attend the Admission Ceremony.

Monday 10 Oct 2016 (Closed)

Ethicon Foundation Fund 2016

Multiple awards of £300 – £1,000

The fund was established by the generosity of Ethicon for the purpose of promoting international goodwill in ophthalmology by providing financial assistance to Fellows, Members or Affiliate Members of the College who have passed the Refraction Certificate and FRCOphth Part 1 and are travelling abroad for research or training.

The Committee favours applications which demonstrate that applicants are using their initiative to obtain clinical experience above and beyond that which they would derive from a routine exchange or secondment to an overseas centre.  It is envisaged that the award will support more senior trainees towards the end of their training who have already gained some relevant experience in this country. This should not, however, discourage junior trainees with an outstanding project from applying.

On occasions grants may be made to senior applicants who may be visiting an overseas centre to teach and/or learn new techniques. The Committee does not, in general, favour grants to enable an applicant to attend a meeting or conference overseas; neither does it favour grants to support the travel and subsistence of an applicant’s family.

There are two separate categories: long-term fellowships (one month plus in duration) and short-term visits (under one month). Retrospective applications will not be considered.

Wednesday         26 Oct 2016 (Closed)

Fight for Sight 2017

One award of £5,000

A shortlist of candidates will be invited to interview. Applications are invited from young ophthalmologists and scientists working in the field of ophthalmology throughout the UK.

The award will be made in recognition of the completion of a significant piece of research (completed within 18 months prior to the closing date) in an area that falls within the remit of the charity.  It is intended that the award will be used to further the education of the award winner by being spent on research-related activities including attendance at conferences and seminars on ophthalmology.

Applicants must be under 40 on 1 January 2017. Applicants may be non-UK citizens.  College membership is not required.

Wednesday 1 Feb 2017 (Closed)

International Glaucoma Association 2017

The maximum award will be £100,000.

A shortlist of candidates will be invited to interview.This is a postgraduate research award to facilitate research into glaucoma. Applicants may be trainees seeking support for a fellowship or senior researchers seeking a grant for a project.

Applications are invited from departments and individuals based in the UK or Eire but the research studies may be carried out elsewhere.The IGA encourages patient orientated research and research directly concerned with the improvement of the management of glaucoma.

Multidisciplinary research teams are encouraged and should include a member/fellow of The Royal College of Ophthalmology but co-applicants (and project lead) may include hospital/community based optometrists and/or nurses undertaking glaucoma research in the UK and Eire.

Animal experimentation is specifically excluded from work supported by the International Glaucoma Association Fellowships.

Grants must be taken up within nine months, unless the grantee makes an application, with explanation, to the Chair of the IGA Grants Committee for approval.

Friday 03 Feb 2017 (Closed)