Spring Congress

Get excited to join us again in Myrtle Beach this summer! Bring the whole family to enjoy fun in the sun, camaraderie with your fellow ODs, and the opportunity to earn your CE credits through a variety of lectures over the course of three days.

Friday, June 10 - Sunday, June 12, 2022

Location: Embassy Suites Kingston Plantation (9800 Queensway Blvd., Myrtle Beach, SC 29572)

Continuing Education: Earn 18 hours of COPE-Accredited CE (17 hours of NC Certified credit). NCOS members have the opportunity to earn an additional 1 hour of general credit by attending the NCOS Business Meeting.

Cost :

Registration Type Early Bird Rate
(before 5/8/22)
Regular Rate
(between 5/9/22 and 5/31/22)
Walk-in Rate
(after 5/31/22 and onsite registration)
NCOS Members $499 $529 $649
State Affiliate/AOA Members $499 $529 $649
OD Non-Members $719 $749 $869
NCOS Student/Resident Members *Free! *Free! *Free!
Exhibitors $1249 (through 4/15/22) $1350 (4/16/22 - 5/15/22) NO walk-ins or registrations after 5/15/22

*Students must sign up for volunteer shifts of CE scanning/monitoring in order to receive free registration! More info and a sign-up sheet will be sent closer to the event.

Health and Safety Information: The NCOS requires meeting attendees to take preventative measures intended to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission. These measures are subject to change depending on the state of the pandemic at the time of Spring Congress. By registering and attending Spring Congress, you agree to adhere to the following guidelines that are designed for the protection of all of our attendees:

  • Wearing a mask while not actively eating or drinking is strongly encouraged.
  • Follow CDC travel guidelines if you've been exposed to, have symptoms of, or tested positive for COVID-19.


  • An excellent lineup of OD speakers
  • Exhibit hall with 50+ exhibitors
  • Friday evening reception in the exhibit hall for attendees
  • Reception and installation ceremony for new NCOS officers and trustees Saturday evening
  • Partner meal functions
  • Located right on the beach!

Exhibitors: click here for exhibitor information


Friday, June 10

8:00 AM - 10:00 AM: Congenital and Acquired Diseases of the Optic Nerve, COPE 74012-NO, Ben Gaddie, OD, FAAO (2 hours)
This course will familiarize primary eyecare providers with the array of congenital and acquired optic nerve disorders and syndromes. Emphasis is placed on the appearance of optic nerve disorders and their relative clinical importance ranging from normal congenital variations to ocular and systemic emergencies. Clinical integration of landmark studies will be emphasized.

10:15 AM - 11:15 AM: Avoiding Drops in Glaucoma: SLT and Injectable Medications, COPE 74067-GL, Ben Gaddie, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
This course will look at the paradigm shift from multiple medications, side effects and cost to how we can utilize treatments which put the control and compliance in the doctors hands and reduce non compliance and adherence.

11:30 AM - 12:30 PM: Blepharitis: The Biggest Unmet Need in Eyecare, COPE 73410-AS, Ben Gaddie, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
The course examines a very common clinical entity that is often overlooked by doctors. Blepharitis is one of the most prevalent eye diseases in the world and currently very few effective treatments exist. We will look at the types of blepharitis as well as emerging treatments and systemic associations.

2:00 PM - 4:00 PM: Glaucoma Grand Rounds, COPE 78333-GL, Eric Schmidt, OD, FAAO (2 hours)
This 2 hour course will present case studies in order to review and update on properly diagnosis and managing glaucoma.

4:15 PM - 5:15 PM: Allergies & the Eye, COPE 78138-TD, Eric Schmidt, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
This course will deal with ocular allergies from a systemic point of view. A discussion of the details of the immune system will take place and the basis of immunology and the eye will be discussed. Signs and symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis will take place. Treatment options for allergic eye disease will occur.

5:30 PM – 6:30 PM: New Treatment Options for Presbyopia, COPE Pending, Eric Schmidt, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
Presbyopia is one of the most common conditions that optometrists will encounter yet the treatment options for this pathology have not advanced much. This course will highlight the changing face of presbyopia from the changing demographics to the new treatment options available to care for presbyopic patients.

Saturday, June 11
8:00 AM - 10:00 AM: Dry Eye & Aesthetics, COPE Pending, Carly Rose, OD (2 hours)
The aesthetic industry is globally a 69.9 Billion dollar industry. How does this market affect your patients? Regardless of the provider's involvement in aesthetics as a personal consumer, one should be informed of the ocular effects of such things.  Topics include cosmetics, lash procedures, cosmetic tattoos, injectables, beauty trends, and more advanced procedures. Many of these segments of the beauty industry can cause ocular surface irritation, dry eye disease, and ultimately damage. Learning what to recognize will help guide an eye care provider guide patients in a seemingly unregulated industry. Adversely, there are emerging technologies stemming from the aesthetic world that are proving to be therapeutic in the treatment of ocular surface disease. Looking at the eyelids as an extension of the skin, it is evident that dry eye disease and the world of aesthetics are interwoven. 

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Eye Care, COPE 78438-PM, Janette Pepper, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
Patients deserve equal access to care and should feel trust and comfort that their eyecare professional understands their specific eye health needs. This course will empower eyecare professionals to create a welcoming environment for a diverse patient base by understanding the different risks and eye health needs of different populations and learning tactical steps eyecare professionals can take to be inclusive in their practice.

11:45 AM - 12:45 PM:  All About the Glands, COPE 75687-AS, Melanie Denton, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
Meibomian Glands are implicated in 86% of Dry Eye cases. There are so many new in-office procedures available to rejuvenate the glands. Learn about advanced dry eye procedures including heat + expression therapy, light therapies and photobiomodulation.

2:00 PM - 4:00 PM: New and Emerging Dry Eye Technologies, COPE Pending, Carly Rose, OD, FAAO (2 hours)
Dry eye disease is one of the youngest of all of the ocular diseases, given that mucin first began being described in 1973. As information and research unfolds, seemingly only more questions emerge. This lecture will explore the latest treatments and technologies in the multifactorial condition of dry eye disease. Diagnostic equipment and treatment algorithms are getting more sophisticated. Pharmaceutical treatments are growing in offerings. Biologic therapies are proving to be a valuable choice. Technological procedures such as IPL and radiofrequency are expanding to compete with more classic thermal evacuation options. With so many choices, guidance on when to elect for which treatments, as well as how these options all fit together in the global picture does not have to be so complicated. 

4:00 PM - 4:15 PM: North Carolina State Board of Examiners in Optometry Board Appointments (open to NC-licensed optometrists residing in North Carolina)

4:15 PM - 5:15 PM: NCOS Business Meeting (1 hour general credit, NCOS members only)

Sunday, June 12
8:00 AM - 9:00 AM: Add Esthetics to Your Primary Eyecare Practice, COPE 76005-AS, Melanie Denton, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
I added an esthetician to my primary eye care practice to support and augment my Dry Eye clinic. I'll discuss recent advancements in aesthetics and how they can be incorporated into an Optometric practice from skincare discussions to dealing with a lash obsessed culture to improving esthetics of the face with the happy side effects of our Dry Eye treatments.

9:15 AM - 10:15 AM: Clinical Applications of Intense Pulsed Light, COPE 75667-AS, Melanie Denton, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
Intense Pulsed Light is a newly FDA approved Dry Eye Treatment. This course will go over clinical applications including aesthetics, dry eye and the treatment of active Hordeolums as well as Chalazions.

10:30 AM - 11:30 AM: Dry Eye is a Skin Disease! Rosacea Explored, COPE 78493-SD, Melanie Denton, OD, FAAO (1 hour)
With Ocular Surface Disease treatment options greatly expanding in the last few years, Ocular Rosacea has come to the forefront in our clinics and patients are more interested than ever to understand their condition and how best to alleviate it. This course will go over the types of rosacea, including but not limited to Ocular Rosacea and touch on new ways of treating it from the eyecare perspective but expanding into Dermatologic and Esthetics schools of thought.

11:45 AM - 12:45 PM: Beyond Warm Compresses: Thermal Heat + Expression Therapy, COPE Pending, Melanie Denton, OD, FAAO (1 hour)


Melanie Denton, OD, FAAO

Salisbury, NC

Raised on a hog farm in Michigan, Dr. Denton dreamed of attending the University of Michigan. She did just that, graduating with a BS in Anthropology-Zoology in 2005. Following her undergraduate studies, she attended the Michigan College of Optometry, obtaining her doctorate in optometry in 2009. Dr. Denton completed her student internships at the Duke Eye Center, the Detroit Veteran’s Affairs Hospital, and the Optometric Institute and Clinic of Detroit. Following graduation, she elected to pursue an Ocular Disease residency program and was selected to be a resident at the prestigious Bascom Palmer Eye Institute in Miami, FL, where she completed her residency. While living in Asheville, she completed an MBA from Western Carolina University. Dr. Denton has a passion for patient care and recognizes the eyes as the window to a person’s overall health. She treats and manages a wide array of ocular diseases, ocular traumas, primary eye care, and comprehensive eye evaluations. Dr. Denton also enjoys fitting contact lenses of all kinds and pediatric exams. She works on a part-time basis at the VA Facilities in Salisbury and Kernersville. Dr. Denton is active in her profession and the community. She is a member of the Historic Salisbury Foundation, the Rowan Chamber of Commerce, and the Salisbury Rotary. She volunteers as a clinical examiner for the North Carolina Board of Optometry. She is also a member of the North Carolina Optometric Society, the American Optometric Association, and is a fellow of the American Academy of Optometry.

Ben Gaddie, OD, FAAO
Carrollton, KY

Dr. Ben Gaddie earned his Doctor of Optometry from the University of Alabama-Birmingham School of Optometry. He then completed a Residency in Ocular Disease through Northeastern State University College of Optometry at the Triad Eye Medical Clinic and Cataract Institute in Tulsa, OK. Currently, he is the owner and director of Gaddie Eye Centers, a multi-location full service practice in Louisville that was started by his father over 40 years ago. Dr. Gaddie is a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry and past President of the Optometric Glaucoma Society (OGS). He is currently the Co-Chairman of the International Vision Expo Meetings, the largest provider of continuing education for eye doctors. He is also a Past President of the Kentucky Optometric Association. Having published extensively in ophthalmic literature, Dr. Gaddie serves on the editorial boards of Review of Optometry, Optometric Management, Primary Care Optometry News and Optometry Times. In 2011, Dr. Gaddie was inducted into the Oklahoma Pioneers in Optometry Hall of Fame. In 2015, he was selected as one of the Most Influential in Optometry by Optometric Management, named a "Leader in Sight" by Bausch & Lomb, and was awarded the Kentucky Optometric Association Optometrist of The Year Award. 

Janette Pepper, OD, FCOVD, FAAO
Memphis, TN

Dr. Janette Dumas Pepper is an associate professor at Southern College of Optometry. She provides patient care as an attending optometrist at The Eye Center in Pediatric Primary Care and Vision Therapy. In the didactic setting, she teaches Optometry Theory and Methods IV and is involved with laboratories in pediatrics, vision therapy, strabismus, and amblyopia. She has served as an investigator on multi-center research studies on amblyopia and on the correction of hyperopia in children. Dr. Pepper is the Coordinator for Student Diversity & Inclusion, the Coordinator of Minority Recruitment, and advisor to the National Optometric Student Association and the Illinois Optometric Student Association at SCO. Dr. Pepper is a Fellow of the College of Optometrists in Vision Development and a member of the American Optometric Association, the National Optometric Association, Tennessee Association of Optometric Physicians, and the West Tennessee Optometric Physicians Society. 

Carly Rose, OD, FAAO
Cincinnatti, OH

Dr. Carly Rose was born and raised in the Greater Cincinnati area. She received a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Northern Kentucky University.  Following graduation, she decided to experience city living and moved to Chicago in optometry school. When not learning about eyes, Dr. Rose spent much of those four years enjoying all of the food Chicago had to offer! After optometry school graduation, Dr. Rose chose to complete a year-long residency at the Cincinnati VAMC Eye Clinic.  Following residency training, she furthered her experience by qualifying and becoming a Fellow of the American Academy of Optometry.  She is a current member of the American Optometric Association, the Ohio Optometric Association, and the American Academy of Optometry. 

Eric Schmidt, OD, FAAO
Wilmington, NC

Dr. Eric E. Schmidt is the founder of Omni Eye Specialists, the President of the Optometric Glaucoma Society (OGS), and brings 22 years of expertise to Wilmington. He received his Undergraduate in 1983 from University of Illinois. He received his Doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania and did an internship and fellowship in Glaucoma. He lectures internationally to his colleagues on Glaucoma, diabetes and retinal disorders. Dr. Schmidt believes that exquisite eye care should be delivered to each individual patient. He wants to meet the needs of each individual patient in a compassionate manner. Dr. Schmidt also embraces the fact that state-of-the-art eye care can be delivered in a comfortable setting right here in Wilmington.  The ability to provide cutting-edge eye care in our hometown is paramount to him. Dr. Schmidt enjoys water sports, outdoor activities and boating, when he is not practicing Optometry. He has three children, Katie and Mackenzie are currently at The University of North Carolina in The School of Journalism and his son, Sam is currently at Hoggard High School, active in baseball. Dr. Schmidt and his wife, Tracey have resided in North Carolina for over 22 years and love it!

Room Block:

Get ready for some exciting new developments at our favorite property in Myrtle Beach! A huge renovation to the pool area, including cabanas and hammocks, as well as a fabulous new pool deck with all-new chaise lounges and daybeds will be the perfect spot to relax during the day. The new oceanview firepits will be a welcome hangout spot for breezy evening cocktails. The new restaurant and tap house, Black Drum Brewing, will even deliver your food and drinks poolside. The kids will be wowed by the newly-designed Splash! Waterpark (featuring two separate parks for older and younger kids!), which is sure to keep them entertained. Additionally, all guest rooms at the Embassy Suites are being renovated and refreshed. As all of these renovations are set to premiere on June 1, we will be one of the first groups to have access to these amazing upgrades! We will have lots more to share as the project progresses, but take a sneak peak here.

A room block is available at the Embassy Suites hotel and at the Kingston Plantation Condos & Villas. Oceanview rooms at the Embassy Suites start at $263/night. Kingston Plantation villas start at $195/night (one, two, and three bedroom villas available). Kingston Plantation oceanview condos (two and three bedroom condos available) start at $320/night. Room reservations are available until the room block closes on May 8 or when the room block sells out, whichever occurs first. Hotel information and the group reservation link will be provided in your confirmation email. 
*Please note that the above hotel links do not take you to our reservations page. You must register first in order to have access to our room block.

Cancellation Policy:

Cancelations received before April 30, 2022 will be entitled to a full refund. Cancellations received between May 1 and May 31, 2022 will be entitled to a 50% refund. Cancellations received after May 31, 2022 will not be entitled to a refund.

Meeting and Event Policies: click here 

For questions, contact Christy Santacana, Meetings Coordinator, at (919) 977-6964 or [email protected].