Ophthalmic laboratory technicians, sometimes referred to as optical mechanics, create eyeglass lenses according to prescriptions and fit them into frames. Some may manufacture lenses for optical instruments such as telescopes or microscopes.
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Ophthalmic laboratory technicians usually work in laboratories or in a retail store that manufactures lenses. They are trained to operate machinery that grinds and polishes eyeglass lenses and to select appropriate lenses according to a prescription. They do not have a lot of contact with the general public and can work part or full-time. Most work eight-hour days which sometimes can include evenings and weekends depending upon the employer.
High school students should study mathematics and the sciences. A high school diploma or equivalent is preferred. Technicians may start out as trainees in a laboratory, while others may take a program through a technical school or the Armed Forces. Some technicians become opticians, although additional training is required.
There currently are no programs for Ophthalmic Laboratory Technicians in Wisconsin.
American Academy of Ophthalmology
655 Beach Street
San Francisco, CA, 94109
American Optometric Association
243 N. Lindbergh Blvd.
St. Louis, MO, 63141-7881
314/991-4100 or 800/365-2219
Commission on Opticianry Accreditation
PO Box 592
Canton, NY, 13617
Contact Lens Society of America
441 Carlisle Dr.
Herndon, VA, 20170
800/296-9776 or 703/437-5100
Joint Commission on Allied Health Personnel in Ophthalmology
2025 Woodlane Dr.
St. Paul, MN, 55125-2998
651/731-2944 or 800/284-3937
National Academy of Opticianry
8401 Corporate Dr., Suite 605
Landover, MD, 20785
Optical Laboratories Association
11096 Lee Highway, Suite A-101
Fairfax, VA, 22030-5039
703/359-2830 or 800/477-5652
Opticians Association of America
3740 Canada Rd.
Lakeland , TN, 38002
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