Columbia Appoints Royce Chen, M.D., as the Jean Sheng Associate Professor of Ophthalmology and Vice Chair of Education

The Department of Ophthalmology congratulates Royce Chen, M.D. (right in photo) on his recent appointment as the inaugural Jean Sheng Associate Professor of Ophthalmology at CUMC and as the Vice Chair of Education in the Department. This appointment acknowledges Dr. Chen's outstanding contributions to our ophthalmology residency and education programs and also celebrates the philanthropic spirit of Jean Sheng (left in photo), a long-time supporter of the department and a member of our Advisory Board.

The Sheng endowment fund, established in May 2023, was created to support a Vice Chair of Education responsible for overseeing all educational missions in the Department of Ophthalmology. The Vice Chair will collaborate closely with all our faculty and educational divisional leadership to enhance the quality of training in vision care and science.

Dr. Chen received a Bachelor of Arts & Music degree from Yale University and his medical degree from Tufts University School of Medicine. He completed his ophthalmology residency at the Edward S. Harkness Eye Institute before receiving a fellowship in vitreoretinal surgery and uveitis at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute.

After his training, Dr. Chen joined the full-time faculty of our Retina division and has served as the Program Director of the Residency since 2017. Under his guidance, the program has undergone substantial improvements, earning its recent recognition as the top program in New York City by Doximity. Dr. Chen has led an education team that has revamped the educational curriculum,  the residency clinic, and enhanced surgical training for residents. He has also fostered several partnerships, including one with Harlem Hospital, leading to the launch of a new Columbia-Harlem resident teaching site. Dr. Chen introduced an Integrated Internship program in July 2021, resulting in increased residency capacity.

Recognizing the importance of resident well-being, Dr. Chen designed an innovative wellness curriculum. His teaching and mentorship have had a significant impact on students, residents, and fellows, earning him respect for his ability to convey complex concepts clearly, as well as the John Martin Wheeler Memorial Teaching Award.

This appointment as the Jean Sheng Associate Professor of Ophthalmology underscores Dr. Chen's dedication to education and leadership and highlights Jean Sheng's generous support. Columbia University is confident that Dr. Chen will continue to enhance the department's educational mission, improving the training experience for future ophthalmologists and solidifying its position as a leader in the field.