Medical and Graduate Student Opportunities

The UAB Department of Ophthalmology offers research opportunities for medical students in both basic and clinical research. Areas of faculty interest include:

  • Vision impairment and low vision rehabilitation
  • Behavioral health issues in chronic disease
  • Morphometry and biomechanical properties of the optic nerve head
  • Growth and remodeling in keratoconus and myopia
  • Epidemiology of eye disease and vision impairment
  • Aging-related eye disease and vision impairment
  • Pressure mechanisms in glaucoma
  • Pathogenesis and image validation in macular degeneration
  • Cell biology of fibroblastic retinal disorders
  • Transplant immunology
  • Complement in uveitis and macular degeneration
  • Reprogramming and stem cells in retinal development
  • High-resolution retinal imaging

More in-depth information is found in the Faculty section of the website.

There are two types of research projects:

 This is a course requirement of the School of Medicine and typically occurs during the second or third year of medical school. It is an intensive two month experience during which the student works closely with a faculty member toward publishable research. The grade for the course is dependent upon successful completion and active participation. Interested students should apply several months prior to their scheduled block – see below for details on how to apply.
 These occur during the summer following the first year of medical school and are funded on a competitive basis with both School of Medicine funds and outside foundation support. These are extremely limited in number and our department application target date is November 15, as the funding deadlines occur early in the new year.

Some of the outside foundations which offer medical student funding are listed below.

Because of the historically high number of students interested in ophthalmology, early inquiry is necessary for both types of research projects, and we cannot accommodate all interested students. Inquiries should include a current CV, current UASOM grade report, college transcript(s), and a letter of interest, and should be sent to Virginia Lolley, MD at