More To Optometry School Than Meets The Eye

We’re roughly halfway through the spring semester and I can hardly believe it! The semester started off with EѰE pledge week, acclimating to our new teachers and classes, and then quickly shifted into midterms. Before I knew it, it was spring break and when I return to Columbus next weekend, we’ll be just a little over a month away from finals. However, as my friends and I have become more well-adjusted to school and Columbus, all our free time hasn’t been entirely dedicated to just studying. Here’s what we’ve been up to outside of class in Fry 22!

1. EѰE pledge week

Epsilon Psi Epsilon is the only existing optometry fraternity left in the country. And although I never considered Greek life as something for me before, I was intrigued by this student organization that was truly special to my school. My friends and I all figured we’d try pledging after hearing over and over about what a great experience it was. It definitely didn’t disappoint; I had so much fun with the scavenger hunt and all the other activities they had planned for us that week. I came out of the week feeling closer to my classmates and having a new strong support system.

which is better, 1 or 2? (one of the pictures from EΨE scavenger hunt)

2. The AOSA Eye Ball

Since we spend most of our time in comfy clothes in the classroom or while we study, it was a lot of fun to get dressed up for the night for the annual AOSA Eye Ball! The Eye Ball is held by the American Optometric Student Association every year and it’s a night where we celebrate faculty and students with awards, dinner, and dancing. I loved having an excuse to slip on a sparkly dress and take a fun study break from an upcoming Neuroanatomy exam with everyone at the College.

our class is a sight for sore eyes, if you ask me

3. Guest speaker talk from Sam Seavey

The Low Vision Rehabilitation Club held an event where they provided us dinner from Bibibop and a special talk from Sam Seavey, creator of The Blind Life YouTube channel. It was so interesting to hear about how Sam navigates his life on a daily basis while having a low vision problem. There were a lot of little things he brought up that I never would’ve realized are problems that patients may have–like how do you put toothpaste on a toothbrush when you have low vision? Most of all, it was inspiring to hear his extremely positive outlook. Sometimes, it’s easy to get bogged down in details like the sulci of the brain and the parts of the heart and you forget why exactly you’re here. But hearing this talk was a great reminder of how lucky I am to be pursuing a career in a field I’m extremely passionate about (and at the best school in the world).

4. Weekly hangouts

One of my goals for this semester was to spend more time with my friends outside of the classroom or library. When we don’t have a particularly busy week, my friends and I have tried to get together to play games, get some ice cream, support the boys’ intramural basketball team, or check out some of the local bars and restaurants. Everyone spent a lot of last semester feeling pressured to put school above all, but this semester, we’ve been figuring out we need each other to do fun stuff to keep each other sane and balance out the schoolwork! Sure I’ve learned a lot in the classroom, but I’ve also learned the importance of working hard and playing hard.

girls night out (you know, like the Miley Cyrus song)

5. Talk from Dean Zadnik

One of the ways I’ve gotten involved is by being a class rep for the new Women in Whitecoats group at the College. Last week, we held our first event where Dean Zadnik gave a great talk about her story and being a woman in the field of optometry. It left me with a lot to think about such as how to juggle your career and personal life, prioritizing things that need to get done, and how important it is that you know your own worth. I’m so thankful that I get to go to a school where I have great role models like Dean Zadnik, and other amazing women, to inspire and encourage me.

with Dean Zadnik and the other Women in Whitecoats class reps

All in all, I would say this semester has been great so far. Although the classes are challenging, it’s rewarding to see how much I am constantly learning all the time. We started spending some time in the clinic this semester where we shadow Opt 3’s and it’s been cool to see some of the stuff we learn in action. For example, we recently learned about retinoscopy in optics and now when I shadow my third year in clinic, I can observe and understand this skill. I’ve loved discovering that there’s more to optometry school than just the eye. Although I’m sure the rest of the semester will be a busy blur, I’m also sure there’s more fun to make it an enjoyable busy blur.

New Year, New Me

I’m currently curled up in a bean bag next to the fireplace at my parents’ house while an episode of Chopped plays in the background. I’ve been home for winter break for exactly 3 weeks now and relaxation has never felt so deserved.

I officially finished my first semester as an Opt I a few weeks ago. The last few months were riddled with some of the biggest, yet most rewarding, challenges I have ever faced. Although finals were incredibly stressful to study for, I found myself being impressed at the volume of material that we had learned. Just four months ago, I would’ve struggled to put into words what exactly the retina was. Now, I could tell you about the ten layers of the retina as well as a thousand other things about the anatomy of the eyeball. When I watch old reruns of Grey’s Anatomy, I know what exactly Lexie Grey is talking about when she concludes that a patient feeling extreme pain is a problem with his ethmoid nerve. The other day, someone was talking to me about her hypothyroid problem and I was able to make an educated guess about the etiology of her specific problem. Although I still have so much more to learn, I am amazed at how much I have learned in such a short amount of time and am excited to only become more knowledgeable with each passing semester.

With the new year beginning, I’ve been thinking about what I want my new year resolutions to be. I thought I’d share with a few of my school-related ones.

1. Treat everything as a learning experience–be constantly paying attention to what worked and didn’t work.

For example, if I do well on a test, I want to make note of what caused me to do well and repeat that for the next one. If I didn’t do well on a test, I want to make note of what didn’t work for me. Or if I realize that a study strategy I’ve been employing is taking up more time than it’s worth–I want to ditch it. Essentially, I want to celebrate my wins and grow from my losses.

2. Make more time to do non-school related things with my friends and family.

It was easy, last semester, to get bogged down in studying. However, the times I did take time out to grab food with friends or make a run to Target or make a trip home for the weekend, I felt my stress reset a little bit. Not only will this be good for my stress, but I want to make the most of my experience living in a great city like Columbus!

3. Study with friends more.

Sometimes it’s hard to coordinate group study times when everyone lives in different places and studies on slightly different schedules. However, I’ve found group study to be helpful in the last semester and I would like to do it more. Not only is it easier to recall information once you’ve physically discussed it with someone, sometimes studying alone all day can make you feel crazy and studying with a few friends makes it more enjoyable.

I can’t believe that the first semester and winter break is (almost) already over!  I saw this quote in a book I read this break: “Time seemed, as it always does in adulthood after a particular stretch has concluded, no matter how ponderous or unpleasant the stretch was to endure, to have passed quickly indeed.” I thought it was a perfect way to describe the last few months of my life. I know the next semester will fly by before I know it, but I’m ready to bring back a refreshed and recharged me to tackle it.


Hi everyone! Welcome to my blog!

The first few weeks have been a whirlwind of getting accustomed to all the new faces and the new campus. I went to undergrad at a pretty small school so it’s been a fun adjustment to all that Ohio State has to offer. For example, I love all the different restaurants available all around campus. Whatever food I’m craving, there is definitely some place to get in on campus! I also love the variety of study places available—from Prior Health Sciences Library to Thompson Library to The Oval to one of the many coffee shops on campus and so much more.

We’re in the same classroom all day for all our classes—our teachers just come to us—and that’s given us a chance to get pretty close and comfortable with one another. Being in class all day is a lot more bearable when you love the people you’re around all day! In addition, all the teachers make lecture more enjoyable with their fun personalities and great teaching styles. But most of all, it’s easy to enjoy going to class when all the teachers make sure to tie every lecture back to why what we’re learning is important to you, as a future optometrist.

I’ve been slowly establishing a routine for myself. I’ve been pleasantly surprised at how I have time to keep up with schoolwork, (almost) regularly work out, and still have fun! In the first week, a lot of clubs had different fun events for us to get to know one another and some of the older students, as well. In the following weeks, different clubs have started to have their first meetings to get the word out about what their clubs are about and some have already caught my eye. I’m excited to get involved in all the different clubs and organizations here at the College over the next few years.

At the Welcome Dinner for all the Opt I’s

I’ve also started to make friends that I can already tell will become part of my support system over the next few years. Absolutely everyone I’ve met has been incredibly kind and welcoming and I can’t wait to get to know everyone better.

Cheering for the BuckEYEs on Opening Night!

Life has been pretty crazy lately because we are smack in the middle of our first round of midterms… It’s been stressful but I can’t help but feel proud of myself for how much I’ve learned–and I’m only a little over a month in. I’m excited to finish our exams this week and celebrate with everyone next weekend.

I’m beyond thrilled that I get to spend the next four years at this great school and I’m so excited to share my journey with you all! Thank you for reading and I’ll SEE ya soon!