A recent trip back to my alma mater revealed an exciting movement on the campuses of optometry schools around the country. Students today are hyper-focused on their careers: planning niche practice opportunities as they consider externships and residencies, branding themselves as ambassadors for optometry in their social media accounts, networking in and out if the classroom from the first time they step on campus. Today’s optometry classes are more engaged, more self-aware of their calling in the profession, and more excited about the possibilities that await them in their career then any before them!
Amrik Tiwana, SCO 2019, is one such leader. After an undergraduate degree in public broadcasting and a stint in advertising management, he felt a passion to give back to his community, and ocular healthcare became that platform. But as a first-year student, he fell into the common traps of many new students in optometry campuses. The hours were grueling; the coursework intense. He didn’t see how he’d make time for anything but studying. By second year he had realized his mistake and doubled down on participating in clubs, student leadership, and community service events that had originally inspired him to enter optometry school. He outlines his tips for making the most of his optometric education in this week’s podcast and gives insight into his generation’s unique skill set to move the profession forward as they enter the optometric workplace. You can follow along with Rik’s optometric experience on his Instagram account @Optometry_Rik.