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Tahira Bedgood, MS

Instructor of Ophthalmic Optics; Director of Education in Optical Services





Why ICO?

Students should choose ICO to get an unparalleled level of optometric education. Not only do our students encounter a population of diverse patients with varying ocular conditions which will make them day-one ready for optometric practice, but also, they learn how to mitigate health disparities by increasing patient health literacy, being culturally competent, and serving the community.


Tahira Bedgood loves Chicago and left the city to pursue her undergraduate degree in Biological Sciences at Stanford University. While an undergrad, she performed research on monoclonal antibodies to characterize age-related changes in the crystallins of the ocular lens. After graduation, she returned to her hometown to work with her mother who was an Optometrist at Vision Discovery. Eventually, Mrs. Bedgood started teaching in the Ophthalmic Technician program at Triton College. There, she taught Ocular Pharmacology, Ophthalmic Optics, Fields Testing, and Ophthalmic Dispensing.  In 2004, she joined the faculty of ICO as the Educational Coordinator in Optical Services.  Subsequently, being Ophthalmic Optics Laboratory Coordinator was added to her responsibilities and in 2011, she was promoted to Director of Education in Optical Services. Mrs. Bedgood completed her Master of Science in Health Professions Education at Rosalind Franklin University to more effectively educate patients and their families while focusing on staff/faculty training. She can be found advocating for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and embedding Health Equity into the curriculum, policies, and procedures of the Illinois Eye Institute.

Special Interests

Health Equity, Ophthalmic Optics


1994 Stanford University, BS in Biological Sciences

2020 Rosalind Franklin University of Medicine and Science, MS in Health Professions Education


1994-2002 Vision Discovery
2003-2008  Triton College
2004-Present Illinois College of Optometry

Awards & Honors

2009 Faculty Advisor to National Varilux Student Grant Winner Casey Bartz
2011  Faculty Advisor to National Varilux Student Grant Winner Laura Talianu

Professional Organizations


McMahon, J. and Bedgood, T. (2007, October) Student Perceptions of the Ophthalmic Optics Laboratory and Eyewear Center Dispensing Rotation at the Illinois College of Optometry. Poster session presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Optometry in Tampa, Florida.

Cole, A., Boyd (Bedgood), T. et. al. (1993) “Type X Collagen Degradation in Long-Term Serum-Free Culture of the Embryonic Chick Tibia Following Production of Active Collagenase and Gelatinase”, Developmental Biology, Vol. 159, p.p. 528-534.

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