Skip to main content

The Class of 2020 Begins



In late August, 45 young men and women arrived on campus to begin a four-year journey toward becoming an optometrist.  The stories of these 45 will differ from each other about why and how they decided this was their chosen profession, but for two days (August 18 and 19) they sat together in a room to learn more about each other, the expectations of the next four years, the experiences of current students, and organizations. 

Orientation marks the beginning of four years of instruction and clinical experience, but it also marks the development of a new family within the College of Optometry.  Each year the College of Optometry admits between 44-46 students who are often initially unfamiliar with one another and over time become a close-knit family.   The two-day orientation is packed with information that will help students remain successful in the program while getting to know each other better.  Madison Moss (’20) felt that orientation, “was really great in acclimating us with the school and helping us get to know each other better. We had the opportunity to spend long amounts of time together and become more comfortable with one another, so we were excited to start this journey together.”  

The resources provided by the college also help in giving the new students insight on what to expect through panel presentations with students and faculty.  “Having the opportunity to ask questions to students and faculty at various points during orientation was extremely helpful, and I think it set us up well for the weeks to come,” Moss said



Students have many reasons for choosing the College of Optometry.  As Moss talks about, “I chose UMSL Optometry because I was seeking a community that would welcome me in and not let me go. I feel that here. This is the most inviting, encouraging place, where your classmates and professors alike care about your present and future success. The sense of community here is overwhelming in the best way, and I am so honored and privileged to be a part of it.”



The next four years will pass by quickly for the Class of 2020.  “We get the opportunity to learn the skills and information that we will be using for the rest of our lives, alongside friends that will one day be our colleagues. That is pretty incredible. Although optometry school might be challenging along the way, it will be well worth the effort,” Moss said.

During the two-day orientation much information was shared along with icebreakers, presentation from representatives of national organizations, and lunch with ambassadors and faculty.   The class of 2020 has been deemed the “Class of Vision” by Assistant Dean for Student Services and Alumni Relations, Dr. Ed Bennett, who comments, “We are all excited about the potential of the Class of 2020.  There is much diversity in the class and a great history of engagement and leadership that should benefit our College the next four years and our profession thereafter.”  

Small group activities were a highlight of orientation


A highlight of orientation every year: A panel of student leaders address questions from the Class of 2020. 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

UMSL Students Flourish: Receive Awards, Honors, and Leadership Positions at Optometry's Meeting

In the College of Optometry’s 37-year history it is very likely that UMSL pride has never been more evident than it was June 21 – 25 in Washington, D.C. at Optometry’s Meeting. UMSL dominated the honors awarded to students and won the respect of the 2,300 students nationwide who were in attendance.  Want proof?
How about this: 1. Recipient of one of  AOSA's highest honors: "The Spirit Award" 2. Two recipients of the College being awarded a first place $15,000 scholarship in a highly competivie national competition 3. One UMSL student elected as the National Liaison to the AOA Contact Lens and Cornea Section 4. One UMSL student was selected as one of two finalists for AOSA National President (the election will be held at a later date).
UMSL’s presence was made known at the very beginning of the meeting when Kate Hamm (’19) was selected to perform the National Anthem at the Opening Ceremony of Optometry’s Meeting.  It just continued to get better.  The Spirit Award, given annual…

UMSL Hosts the 2017 Association of Optometric Contact Lens Educators 34th Annual Educational Workshop

The UMSL College of Optometry was host to 56 contact lens educators from all of the Colleges in North America as well as 23 representatives from contact lens industry sponsors as host of the 34th Annual Association of Optometric Contact Lens Educators(AOCLE) Annual Educational Workshop, held June 1 – 3.  The theme of the meeting was ““Scleral Lenses: The Good, The Bad, The Technology.” Guest lecturers included renown scleral lens innovators Drs. Christine Sindt and Jason Jedlicka.  Attendees had the opportunity to participate in workshops pertaining to scleral lens evaluation and fitting.  A highlight of the workshop was a tour of the new UMSL Patient Care Center.  The organizing committee consisted of Drs. Julie DeKinder, Vinita Henry, Ed Bennett, and Beth Henderson with Dr. DeKinder doing a wonderful job as Chair of the committee.  And she was very pleased to have this opportunity as she relates: “It was an honor to host the AOCLE at UMSL.  Having the opportunity to showcase our new…

Farewell and Good Luck Class of 2017

Farewell, Young Doctors. Go Be The Vision. Dear Class of 2017;
This was Nick's final email email to the Class of 2017 on Thursday, May 11, 2017.—23,890+ emails later… Today, May 12, 2017 they graduate as Doctor's of Optometry.  Please indulge me for a bit… If I were to give your commencement address…Here is what I would have to say to each of you and to be honest—I don’t like goodbyes, so this will help capture my thoughts and feelings.  Today, we celebrate your commencement.  Cheers- Nick
This is all because of you.
Four years ago each of you began a journey together—not knowing what to expect or what to do, but you quickly learned the next four years would be a challenge.  Through it all though, you stood tough.  Quite frankly, it wasn’t always easy and I am sure moments questioning your decision crossed your mind—maybe more than once.  Always remember this: If it was meant to be easy then everyone would be here, but that is not the case.  You are one of a small group of dedicat…