SUNY College of Optometry is a vibrant community of engaged student leaders, faculty, and staff members. Please describe how you intend to make strong contributions–and add value to — the SUNY College of optometry community during your time as an OD student. Please give examples of how you made strong contributions to a particular community in the past.
More than anything, my primary goal in life is to help people – I recognize that I cannot do that unless I have the knowledge and skills to do so. One of the things that has attracted me so much to the SUNY College of Optometry’s OD Program is its comprehensive curriculum, skilled faculty and a unique focus on an expert combination of optometric theory and clinical practice. I feel that I thrive best when I am in an environment of active learners and leaders, a group in which I can contribute and participate in my education.
As someone who has had rather unique experiences in the field, I can provide insight to other medical students and the community of the SUNY College of Optometry. My continuing work at the German Eye Clinic in Pristina, Kosovo is particularly enlightening; as was my experiences working with the United Nations Mission in Kosovo in 1999, where I witnessed all manner of clinical medical practices. This experience has allowed me to gain a significant amount of experience, in a practical capacity, with optometry in the clinical setting, which I look forward to sharing with my fellow students.
My previous clinical and academic work was in ophthalmology, lending me a different outlook than other SUNY students who may be approaching the eye from a strict optometry perspective. I also have a considerable amount of professional training and international outreach experience; I speak four languages; I have been published in multiple scientific papers both international and local congresses, as well as scientific magazines such as the European Journal of Ophthalmology. This practical experience with the academic aspects of professional medical work should prove enlightening for my fellow students. My substantial experience in ophthalmology should also provide greater context and understanding for my fellow optometry students on the different diseases that can affect the eye, as well as the effect of ocular medications and surgery on vision.
I believe my experiences and insights can provide a global perspective to the rest of the SUNY community, thus allowing me to contribute in a productive and valuable way. While I have spent a portion of my life in a transitional state and displaced regarding Kosovo, I continued to return to my community in order to give back to them in a time of significant need. I feel as though these experiences provide me with a perspective I believe few others in my class will likely share. By sharing these experiences and insights, it is my belief, I will prove to be a valuable resources to my fellow students. The overall goal of this kind of education environment is for everyone to learn from each other; the things I have seen and experienced, and the work I have done thus far in the field of ophthalmology, will prove useful to the rest of the SUNY College of Optometry community.