Name: Kaitlyn Rooney 2022 Student Visionary Spotlight

Class Year: 2022

What is your specialty or area of focus (if applicable)?
Low Vision and Ocular Disease

List the award(s) / scholarship(s) you have received
Eschenbach Award for Excellence in Low Vision

What does receiving this award or scholarship mean to you?
I am very grateful to have received this award, being that low vision is an area of optometry that I am very passionate about. There are many blinding eye diseases, as well as many unforeseen traumas that cause people to lose their vision. Low vision is a specialty of optometry that aims to improve quality of life.

What are your plans following graduation?
After graduation I will be completing a residency at the Hudson Valley VA Hospital, focusing on Primary Care, Ocular Disease, and Low Vision services.

What advice would you give incoming or prospective optometry students?
The advice I would give to incoming or prospective optometry students is to remember that each patient is a person, and the time you spend with someone in an exam room can potentially change their quality of life. Do not underestimate the power of empathy to patients and remember that knowledge is only a part of your job as a doctor but taking the time to understand someone's concerns is essential.