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Optometry Residency Program

The Ocular Disease /Primary Care /Geriatric Low Vision Rehabilitation Optometry Residency Program at the Robert J . Dole Veterans Affairs Medical center is a 12-month (52-week) post-graduate clinical education program with two positions available. It is accredited by the Accreditation Council on Optometry Education and affiliated with the University of Missouri School of Optometry St. Louis.

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Program Details

The resident is an employee of the VA Medical Center facility and a clinical staff member in the Optometry Clinic. The Residency provides extensive clinical experience in Ocular Disease with emphasis in Primary Care and Geriatric Optometry.  The resident will assist with direct patient care and the opportunity to work with Optometry student interns. 

The program, a 12-month long program which starts on July 1, focuses on advanced competency in the clinical skills and scholarly development of the residents by exposing the residents to direct patient care enhanced by lectures, conferences, presentations, and consultation with other medical services. Residents will become proficient in ocular disease diagnosis and management and co-managing systemic conditions that have ocular manifestations.

The optometry clinic is located 1.5 miles south of the main VA campus. It includes 17 examination lanes, a clinic conference area, four specialty testing rooms, and a low vision rehab training room. Residents have access to a retinal imaging, OCT, Visual fields, electrodiagnostics, and low vision rehab assistive devices. This program is designed to offer residents the opportunity to participate in primary eye care examinations, ocular disease management and provide low vision blind rehabilitation services. This multi-faceted experience helps to produce well-rounded, capable Optometric physicians who will have an advantage on entering whichever practice setting they desire.

The didactic portion of the residency has been designed to help the residents become proficient in analyzing and applying medical literature , as well as discussion and presentation of cases and topics with fellow colleagues and students. This is accomplished during monthly journal review meetings and Optometric Grand Rounds.

Vision Rehabilitation Services at our Advanced Low Vision Clinic (ALVC)

The mission of Blind Rehabilitation Services (BRS) is to assist eligible veterans and active duty Service members with a visual impairment in developing the skills needed for personal independence and successful reintegration into the community and family environment.

When basic low vision care provided in Optometry and Ophthalmology is no longer sufficient, veterans may receive outpatient care at our Advanced Low Vision Clinic. Services include, but not limited to:

  • Low Vision optometry exam and functional vision evaluation
  • Provide assessment and therapeutic instruction on how to maximize remaining vision to complete tasks, such as accessing printed material, financial management and food prep/kitchen safety
  • Training on how to use assistive technology to address functional deficits as a result of visual impairment
  • Assessment and instruction to increase awareness of the environment and safety

ALVC staff includes Low Vision optometrist, Certified Low Vision Therapist (CLVT) and Certified Orientation & Mobility Specialist (COMS).

The Visual Impairment Services Team (VIST) coordinator is also present at the ALVC. The VIST coordinator provides lifetime care coordination for veteran with visual impairments and often serve as the entry point into the continuum of care for Blind Rehabilitation Services within the VAMC.

Optometry Staff

Michelle L Dent, OD, FAAO, attended Northeastern State University College of Optometry in Oklahoma. She completed her Residency in Ocular Disease at the Jack C. Montgomery VA Medical Center in Muskogee, Oklahoma. She joined the Robert J . Dole VA staff in July 2001 upon completion of her Residency.  She serves as the Chief of the Optometry service, student program coordinator since 2001 , and residency coordinator since 2008 .

Sean Knaak, OD, received his Bachelors of Science degree in Biology from Washburn University. He graduated from Indiana University School of Optometry in 2003. After graduating, he completed his optometry residency at the Kansas City VAMC. He has worked in academia, private practice and commercial practice. He joined the Optometry clinic staff at Wichita VAMC in 2007. He also provides low vision rehab optometry to visually impaired veterans at Wichita VAMC.

John Volosin, OD, is a native of Kansas and holds Bachelors degrees in Business from Kansas State University and Biology from Emporia State University. Dr Volosin graduated from the Northeastern State University Oklahoma College of Optometry in 2002. He was in private practice for five years prior to joining Robert J. Dole VA Medical Center as a staff optometrist in 2007.

Bryce A Krehbiel, OD, FAAO, is a Kansas native who graduated from Kansas State University in 2013. He completed his Doctor of Optometry degree in 2017 from the University of St. Louis College of Optometry. Dr. Krehbiel went on to complete a residency in Primary Care and Low Vision Rehabilitation at Robert J. Dole VA where he later joined the staff in July 2018.

Admission Requirements

  • O.D. degree from an accredited program by starting date
  • 3 Letters of recommendation
  • Interview
  • Eligible for state optometry licensure
  • Must be a US citizen
  • Completion of ORMatch
  • Path to Passing of NBEO exams I, II, and III

Interviews typically start in January and end the third week of February. Qualified applicants, who have applied through ORMS, should email to schedule an interview.

For additional information, contact Dr. Michelle Dent ,; phone 1-888-878-6881, ext. 57100


The Robert J . Dole VAMC Optometry Residency Program provides equal educational opportunity regardless of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, veteran status, age, or sex.

Requirements for Completion

Completion of the 12 months of residency attending the assigned clinic services  

  • Attending and presenting required lectures and grand rounds with students, staff and faculty
  • A manuscript of publishable quality or Poster/Presentation/Lecture presented at the regional or national meeting or completion of a research project
  • Attend the AAO, a State Association meeting,  or the Heart of America CE Conference
  • Obtain a current state license to practice optometry
  • Attain at least 3.0 rating on a scale of 5.0 on performance evaluations
  • Failure to pass all National Boards will result in an incomplete residency.

Expected weekly hours

Five weekdays; 40 clinic hours a week  (no after hours or weekend call)
The resident is expected to spend additional time in self-study.

Salary and Benefits

  • $43,924
  • Insurance: health and life
  • Full liability insurance coverage
  • Sick leave/annual leave
  • Authorized absence granted for educational purposes


Program Coordinator

Michelle Dent, O.D. FAAO
Phone  888-878-6881, ext. 57100

Low Vision Rehab Coordinator

Sean C. Knaak, O.D.
Phone  888-878-6881, ext. 57100

Program Location

Robert J . Dole VA Medical Center
Eye Clinic
Parklane Shopping Center
949 S Glendale
Wichita, KS 67218