The Vision Care Institute

Earlier this week, I was able to attend the Specialty Contact Lens Training Seminar at The Vision Care Institute (TVCI) in Jacksonville, FL.  The cost of the entire trip—transportation, hotel accommodation, and LOTS of food—was all sponsored by TVCI.  I went with seven other classmates, and we all learned valuable information and enjoyed the trip immensely.

The seminar was a two-day event that included a behavior/personality assessment review, manufacturing tour, and live patient interaction and feedback, among many other things.  There were also students from other optometry schools and colleges, and I was able to mingle with new people and even catch up with old friends.

Each optometry school or college gets to set the requirements for attending the seminar, and the only requirement for RSO students to attend is to be a Contact Lens Society member.

I would recommend attending the seminar either as a third-year or fourth-year student so that you will already have clinical experience and have taken the series of contact lens courses and labs.  This background of knowledge and skills will come in handy when fitting actual patients with contact lenses as part of the training seminar.

At the end of the seminar, every attendee received a plaque.  It was a great souvenir for a great trip!

Student Affairs: From Canada To Texas

My name is Gauri Mehta and I am part of the Class of 2014 at UIW Rosenberg School of Optometry.

I am an International Student from Alberta, Canada. Post admission, I was a little nervous about such a long distance move to Texas, but the excellent staff in the Student Affairs office made the transition super easy.

They provided expert guidance at every step of the way. I had many questions regarding Financial Aid, International documentation, housing, expenses, etc. and I got all the help I needed and more. The staff went out of the way to answer questions, were quick to reply to emails and phone calls, which made the process so easy.

Looking back, I remember I had to call or email every other day regarding International documentation and Financial Aid, as these were the two most important and labor intensive processes to complete, because I had to coordinate documents from different organizations.

The knowledgeable staff at the student affairs office went out of their ways to ease the transition with all aspects of the process. I understand that this process could get a little daunting and I would advice every prospective student to take full advantage of this wonderful team and let them guide you along the way.

Introduction to Shital Choksi

Hi! This is Shital Choksi, class of 2014. I was born and raised in India and immigrated to this country about 9 years ago. I had a long journey to the UIWRSO while transitioning to a whole new array of careers. I did my B.S. in Biochemistry from State University of New York. While pursuing my undergraduate degree, I explored, researched and compared many different career paths. The Doctor of Optometry (O.D.) was attractive to me due to a variety of reasons such as schedule flexibility, modes of practice and job satisfaction. It is the only profession where I have not met a single individual who complained about their profession. I interviewed with at least 5 other programs for optometry. There are a number of factors what attracted me to UIWRSO such as the small class size, personal attention to individual students, flexible schedules of professors, and the school’s mission statement to not just graduate students but to train you to be the best clinician.

I am from “Gatorland” Gainesville, FL, so the transition of traveling across the country to another state and city was not stressful because the majority of my classmates went thru same thing.  At UIWRSO, my classmates are from all four corners of this country as well as from Canada. I love how everyone of us has to take same coursework at the same time and in the same classroom which turns the classroom into a family environment. Professors are also a key part to this family for the entire four years that I’m here. Student Affairs is a great place for me to just walk in and discuss anything at all and be cared for, cherished and is a place I always feel conformable visiting. It is like a home away from the home 🙂

When I joined UIWRSO, I was among the second class to be admitted. It may seem a scary thought but trust me, if you see thru my eyes then you will see it as a huge opportunity. It is special to have seen each and every student organization being built by my fellow classmates. It is a great teaching tool for your upcoming life where you may not have everything ready for you. In the future, there will always be transitions and changes occurring everyday.  Building new organizations can create options which you may have never discovered before, and this is key to your future success.

Since my undergraduate career, I have always been a leader and UIWRSO is no different for me and the school has provided tons of opportunities to grow as a student leader. Currently, I am serving as Vice President of the Contact Lens (CL) Society and Treasurer of the College of Vision Development (COVD) Society. There is always something to learn and a chance to add to your skills and get to know each other at those meetings. There are other student communities which I am proud to be a part of like Big Sib/Lil sib and serving community with the Student Volunteer Optometric Service to Humanity (SVOSH).
My motto for life is to keep working till you achieve perfection. So join me and keep reading!

Neda Esmaeili

Neda Esmaeili
Neda Esmaeili

Hi! My name is Neda Esmaeili and I am a student in the class of 2015 at the University of the Incarnate Word Rosenberg School of Optometry.

I graduated from the University of Houston with a BBA in business management and a minor in biology. I have known I wanted to be an optometrist since I was in middle school and my sister had a severe traumatic injury to her eye that almost left her blind! She is perfectly fine now but seeing how optometry saved her vision really affected my career choice.

However, at the beginning of my college education, I realized science was just not my thing and I became skeptical of the career path I was heading towards. Some time and soul searching later, I decided to stick with my original decision.

Not only was optometry something I wanted since I was young, it was also going to provide me with the lifestyle I had always imagined. More importantly, I am gaining the personal fulfillment of helping others and servicing my community. It honestly can’t get any better than that!

I chose UIWRSO for many reasons. In San Antonio I am far enough away from home to not be distracted by my friends and family in Houston, Texas but close enough to hop in the car and visit them when my schedule permits. I love the fact that our class size is small and we can all get to know our fellow classmates and people of other classes fairly well.

My undergrad was at a huge university and every little administrative process took forever which was really annoying and frustrating. At UIWRSO, everything is done in a quick and swift manner, which is a relief.

Also, being currently the only faith-based optometry school in the U.S. gave me a sense of security. It assured me that I would be surrounded by warm and inviting people who are in this profession as honest people for an honest living.  And so here I am to portray to you, through my eyes, the world that is UIWRSO and the family we have created! I hope you enjoy it :).

Preparation for Board Examinations aka, March Madness!!!

Today I received my KMK review materials for the National Board of Examiners in Optometry, which is coming up in a few months. I’m very nervous but thankfully our school has it all planed out for us. We have already started review classes. To start things off, we broke the preparation down in phases which will take place in the following order:

Phase 1: Content Review

OK let’s get started!! This phase is comprised of review sessions on each major topic area to provide us with an outline of what we should study. This will help us to see the big picture and know what is most important in the subject. This will run every Friday afternoon during the month of September

Phase 2: Trivial Pursuits

..or as I like to call it the fun phase! We will have a series of Optometry Trivial Pursuit style challenges during October and November. This is a good time to evaluate our knowledge and know what our weaknesses are so we can tackle those problem areas before January!!!

Phase 3: Q&A

Alright… you better know it all by now! In January and February there will be a series of Q&A review sessions on Friday afternoons. These are designed so if we have any questions after studying for the past few months and maybe have questions to fill in the gaps.

Also, we will have two KMK review sessions during two separate weekends. All of these should help us get organized. So with good planning and productive studying I think we can all succeed … Right class of 2014???