Subscribe to Newsletter

Michael F. Chiang

Director, National Eye Institute, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA

If you weren’t an ophthalmologist…

I’d be an engineer. I grew up in a family where almost everybody was an engineer, and went to college knowing that I wanted to study electrical engineering (which did end up being my college major). I became a physician because I wanted to develop technologies that could eventually help patients. Throughout my career, I have loved trying to identify and solve problems, and I’m probably still an engineer at heart.

A little-known or interesting thing about you...

As a medical student, I initially thought about becoming a neurosurgeon because I was interested in computational neuroscience and neural networks. For several years, I worked in the lab of Richard H. Masland in the Division of Neurosurgery Research at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. Masland was studying neural information processing – using the rabbit retina as a model system. This is how I became fascinated by the visual system and that’s what made me become an ophthalmologist.

Register to The Ophthalmologist

Register to access our FREE online portfolio, request the magazine in print and manage your preferences.

You will benefit from:
  • Unlimited access to ALL articles
  • News, interviews & opinions from leading industry experts
  • Receive print (and PDF) copies of The Ophthalmologist magazine



The Ophthalmologist website is intended solely for the eyes of healthcare professionals. Please confirm below: