Name: Julie Lin 2022 Student Visionary Spotlight

Class Year: 2022

What is your specialty or area of focus (if applicable)?
Cornea and Contact Lens

List the award(s) / scholarship(s) you have received
GP Lens Institute Clinical Excellence Award for Outstanding Clinical Proficiency in Contact Lenses Dr. William M. Eisenberg Memorial Award (sponsored by Alcon) for Excellence in Ocular Disease

What does receiving this award or scholarship mean to you?
It is such an honor to receive both of these awards and I feel that it recognizes the work I have put in these past few years to pursue my interests and improve my clinical skills. It reflects my constant desire to learn and I am so thankful to my family, friends, professors, and community who have supported me throughout optometry school.

What drew you to the field of optometry?
I always knew I enjoyed biology and interacting with people, so optometry was a great way to combine those two interests. I saw how vision impacts every part of a person's life and how optometrists have a unique ability to holistically improve their patients' lives. I also love talking to and connecting with patients!

What are your plans following graduation?
I will be pursuing a residency in Ocular Disease with an emphasis in cornea and contact lenses at Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary/Harvard Medical School!

What was your most transformative experience during optometry school?
Meeting wonderful classmates and mentors throughout my time at SUNY! I loved being a part of the Cornea and Contact Lens Micro-Credential Program where I learned so much from Dr. Keh and the contact lens faculty - it sparked my passion for specialty contact lenses. I am also so grateful for the amazing lifelong friends I've made!

What advice would you give incoming or prospective optometry students?
Give yourself grace through the process and don't be too hard on yourself! The curriculum will be challenging but try not to compare yourself to others. Don't be afraid to lean on your classmates for support!