Emily's Blog

The following entries are presented from most recent to oldest posts.

Graduation 2015: My Last Blog Post

Last Sunday, on May 17, 2015, four amazing and challenging years of optometry school culminated in the graduation ceremony for the class of 2015. It’s surreal and strangely unexpected—even after all of the testing, preparation, and…   Read More

Low Vision Learning Experiences on a Fourth Year Rotation

It’s a little over a month until graduation, and the reality of progressing from student to practicing optometrist is imminent. It’s a reality that encroaches on my clinical demeanor and decision-making process. When discussing cases with my preceptors, I’m constantly questioning myself and…   Read More

On Migrations and Milestones

Last week, I moved to my hometown of Buffalo, New York, for my fourth and final clinical rotation of optometry school. This will be my second rotation at a VA hospital, and I will be working in both a primary care environment and also a low vision clinic. While in the primary care setting, I will…   Read More

Winter Brings Snowstorms and Board Exams

This week, courtesy of Winter Storm Juno, I had two days off from clinic. I’ve been enjoying being back in Boston with my NECO friends, taking advantage of all of the amazing things the city has to offer. It looks particularly nice covered in snow, as I observed on a winter walk today–the city…   Read More

Fourth Year Lessons

It’s winter again in Boston, although the lack of snow makes it hard for me, a native of Buffalo, New York, to feel that fall has really ended. First, second, and third years are busy studying for and taking their final exams, while we fourth years are able to reminisce with the fondness of distance…   Read More

Six Months

I’m six months away from becoming an optometrist. It’s not that I didn’t think that I would make it this far, it’s that I can’t believe that I’m here already. Optometry school is an immersive experience: once you enter the NECO family, you’re consumed by classes, friends, and…   Read More

Firsts and Lasts

Elementary school, middle school, high school. Four years of college and three at NECO; all told, I’ve been in school for twenty of the nearly twenty-five years of my life. I’ve survived what feels like an infinite number of quizzes, tests, and exams and the stress inherent in pursuing a challenging…   Read More

VisionExpo, Eye Ball, and Saying Goodbye to Third Year

In three weeks, I will be leaving Boston and starting my first rotation of fourth year at a small private practice in Virginia. It’s simultaneously frightening and exhilarating to think that I am not only three-quarters of the way done with optometry school, but also that I am about to transition…   Read More

Boards Are Over and Spring Is Here!

Congratulations, NECO third years! We survived Part I of our National Board Exams and made it through to the traditional post-Boards pub crawl on the other side. We spent months stressing and studying, carrying our Boards books from coffee shop to coffee shop, quizzing each other and preparing ourselves…   Read More

Winter Study Weather image

Winter Study Weather

It’s been cold and snowy here in Boston the past few weeks, which makes me, hailing from Buffalo, feel right at home. It’s also February, a little over a month away from Part 1 of our Board exams, which means that the stress of the class of 2015 is at an all-time high. We have all become very…   Read More

2014 at NECO: What’s In and What’s Out

Happy New Year to NECO’s current and future optometrists! To commemorate the shift from 2013 to 2014, and our shifting focus from coursework to what will this summer become full-time clinical assignments, here’s what’s in and what’s out for third years at NECO. In: Studying comprehensively…   Read More

Using Stress to Your Advantage

NECO is paused right now for Thanksgiving break, and I am home in Buffalo, New York, surrounded by a foot of snow and the remnants of my family’s Thanksgiving feast. Due to the once-in-a-lifetime intersection of Thanksgiving and Hanukkah, I’ve spent the past few days baking apple and chocolate…   Read More

Boards, Boards, Boards

We’ve heard about optometry’s National Board exams throughout our time at NECO, but always in terms of the future; as a first and second year, Boards were something that I didn’t think I would be facing for quite some time. But now, in November of my third year, Boards suddenly feel imminent.…   Read More

A Progression of Clinical Thinking, Part 1

Midterms begin tomorrow, already, and it seems impossible that we could be halfway done with the semester. I’ve been able to fall into a routine at clinic, concentrating on trying to improve my speed and to ask my preceptors as many questions as I can while I’m at this location. I’m seeing a…   Read More

Third Year Begins (and it feels like senior year!)

Although optometry school lasts for four years, our third year is the final year that we will spend attending classes at NECO. During our fourth year, we go on rotations at four different clinical sites, only one of which takes place in Boston. The other three rotations can be in Boston or at a variety…   Read More

Celebrating Summer and the Official Start of Third Year

Next week marks the beginning of my summer semester and the beginning of my third year at NECO. Half of my classmates are finishing their summer session this week with only one or two final exams and their last few days at their summer clinic sites. They will then be able to take a much-deserved summer…   Read More

How Did You Know You Wanted To Be an Optometrist?

It’s a question you hear countless times, both before and after you enter the New England College of Optometry. When you’re talking to a friend, or a relative, or anyone you meet in Boston, people are curious — either because the idea of touching other peoples’ eyes makes them queasy, or that…   Read More

Thoughts on Finishing Second Year, Starting Third Year, and Beyond

I’m extremely excited for and proud of the class of 2015 for completing our second, and arguably most difficult, year of optometry school. We survived all seven of our final exams through hard work and perseverance, and extended our clinical education by learning new procedures and incorporating…   Read More

Our NECO Family

Two weeks ago, I went home to Buffalo, New York for a long weekend to celebrate my mother’s birthday. We had Monday the fifteenth off from school for Patriot’s Day, also known as Marathon Monday, and I was set to fly back to Boston that night. While packing my suitcase to return to the city, I…   Read More

Thoughts on Preparing for My Last Proficiency Exam

In addition to midterm and final exams, at NECO we also take proficiency exams that test our practical optometric skills. The majority of our classes each semester have a laboratory component, and although material learned and reinforced in lab can be tested on our written exams, we also need to have…   Read More