Image courtesy of the Museum of Chinese in America
Repository: Museum of Chinese in America and Princeton Active Circle (PAC)
Event Title: MOCA and PAC Present: A Conversation with Dr. Ming Wang – The Immigration Journey of a World-Renowned Ophthalmologist
Event Type: Virtual Panel Discussion
Event Location: Zoom. Register here
Event Date: October 17th, 2023
Event Time: 6:30 PM — 8:00 PM
In partnership with the Princeton Active Circle (PAC), the Museum of Chinese in America(MOCA) is thrilled to present a live oral history session with Dr. Ming Wang, one of the world’s leading cataract and LASIK eye surgeons. A Harvard and MIT alumnus with a PhD in laser physics, Dr. Wang achieved a groundbreaking milestone by performing the world’s first laser-assisted artificial cornea implantation. The interview, which celebrates the Museum’s acquisition of Dr. Wang’s personal photographs into its collection, will showcase these images to delve into the broader immigration journey of this distinguished Chinese American doctor. The conversation will touch upon on his childhood in China during the 1960s and 1970s, his immigration experience, academic and professional life, challenges with discrimination, the invention of the amniotic membrane contact lens that revitalized the vision of millions, and his philanthropic initiatives in eye care through the Wang Foundation for Sight Restoration. In addition to learning about Dr. Wang’s fascinating personal story, attendees will gain insights into the Museum’s approach to conducting oral histories, particularly when collaborating with collection donors to enrich the contextual depth of its collections. The program will conclude with a Q&A session, allowing participants to engage directly with the panelists.
Yue Ma, Director of Collections and Research at MOCA, and Wei Wu, Director of the Princeton Active Circle, will co-host and lead this oral history session. The interview will be primarily conducted in Chinese, supplemented by real-time English captions through Zoom.
Both English and Chinese speakers are cordially invited to this free virtual event. Advance registration is required. Upon successful registration, participants will receive a confirmation email with the necessary details to join the webinar. Please note that the session will be recorded.
The Universal Studios film "Sight," based on Dr. Wang’s autobiography "From Darkness to Sight" and co-starring Greg Kinnear, is set to debut in theaters across the U.S. on October 27, 2023. MOCA will add both the film and the autobiography to its Reference Library.
Since its founding in 1980, the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) has celebrated the living history of the Chinese experience in America by preserving and presenting the 200-year history, heritage, culture, and diverse experiences of American communities of Chinese descent. Founded as a community-based organization, MOCA has over a period of four decades maintained our community centrality while gaining a national following of visitors and members. Our museum strives to be responsive to the moment; tell nuanced and unexpected stories; spotlight politically conscious issues; and provide a platform for open dialogue and dynamic programs. MOCA contributes to a fuller and more nuanced and layered American narrative in highlighting the stories of this immigrant community.
Princeton Active Circle, or PAC, is a 501(3)(C) non-profit organization located in Princeton, NJ. Formerly known as Princeton Running Team, it was officially registered in 2022 to provide better service to an expanded audience. The mission of PAC is to enrich and improve the quality of life of all members of the community through organizing, motivating, and engaging them in fitness & wellness activities and social events. Since its inception, PAC had organized many outdoor activities such as weekly running, annual AAPI 5K Run and Walk, Summer picnic, as well as enrichment programs such as educational presentations on various topics, historical tour, and collaboration with youth and other non-profit organizations.
About the Speakers
Dr. Ming Wang is a Harvard & MIT graduate (MD, magna cum laude) and is one of the few laser eye surgeons in the world today who holds a doctorate degree in laser physics. The film “Sight” is based on Dr. Wang’s autobiography “From Darkness to Sight”, co-starring Greg Kinnear. As a teenager, Ming fought poverty and hardship in China and came to America with only $50 and earned two doctorate degrees, one in laser physics and one in medicine, and graduated with the highest honors from Harvard Medical School and MIT. Amniotic membrane contact lens, which Dr. Wang invented and for which he holds two U.S. patents, has been used by tens of thousands of eye doctors in nearly every nation throughout the world, and millions of patients have had their eyesight restored. Wang Foundation for Sight Restoration has helped patients from over 40 states in the U.S. and 55 countries, with all sight restoration surgeries performed free-of-charge. Dr. Wang was named the Kiwanis Nashvillian of the Year for his lifelong dedication to help blind orphaned children from around the world.
Yue Ma, Director for Collections and Research, has been with MOCA for seventeen years, and is in charge of the museum collections, library, and archives. She oversees daily acquisition, preservation, conservation, research, and digital projects in MOCA’s new Collections and Research Center, located at 3 Howard Street, titled MOCA Workshop. In addition, she assisted with the permanent exhibition “With a Single Step,” and co-curated the exhibition “Waves of Identity: 35 Years of Archiving.” She enjoys being a liaison between the collection donors and the museum. Prior to MOCA, Ma interned at the City of Toronto Archives, and served as a Digital Project Manager and an Associate Research Archivist at the Shenzhen City Archives. Educated globally, she received a B.Sc. from Jilin University and a MBA from Xiamen University respectively, then received a MA in Photographic Preservation and Collections Management from a joint program at Ryerson University and George Eastman House.
Wei Wu, PhD, Director of Princeton Active Circle (PAC, a 501c3 NGO). A first generation Chinese immigrant to the United States, Dr. Wu earned his PhD in Economics from Wayne State University in Michigan. He is an outdoor activist, completed one full Ironman, two half-Ironman and numerous half-marathons. Inspired by Princeton Half Marathon, he and a group of his friends started a WeChat group of “Princeton Running Team” in 2015 to encourage local Chinese community members to engage more active lives. After 8 years of running together, he formed PAC organization with friends in 2022 with a mission to enhance and improve quality of life of all community members through motivating, educating, and engaging them in healthy physical and mental activities/social events. The organization has organized two successful Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month 5K run and walk events in May 2022 and 2023.
Registration link: https://www.mocanyc.org/event/conversation-with-dr-ming-wang/