Name: Amanda Fitzpatrick 2023 Student Visionary Spotlight

Class Year: 2023

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

List the award(s) / scholarship(s) you have received
Dr. William Feinbloom Memorial Award for Outstanding Clinical Proficiency in Low Vision Dr. Louis Herrmann Memorial Award for Outstanding Compassion in Patient Care Dr. William M. Eisenberg Memorial Award (sponsored by Alcon) Excellence in Ocular Disease

What does receiving this award or scholarship mean to you?
I feel extremely honored to be recognized for the hard work I’ve put in academically and clinically for the past 4 years. Receiving these awards gives me the confidence that I’ve done what I needed to do to give my future patients the best care possible.

What drew you to the field of optometry?
As humans, we rely on our sight so much on a daily basis. The idea of helping people see initially drew me toward optometry. This was then backed up by all of the positive experiences I have had with eye doctors in the past as a kid with amblyopia (lazy eye).

What are your plans following graduation?
For the last 3 years, I’ve been a recipient of an HPSP scholarship through the Air Force. After graduation, I’ll be working on a US Air Force Base as an eye doctor.

What was your most transformative experience during optometry school?
My most transformative experience in optometry school was participating in SVOSH and going on a mission trip to Guerrero Mexico. Being a small part of an eye clinic that helped people blinded by cataracts be able to see is something I will never forget.

What advice would you give incoming or prospective optometry students?
Take every patient encounter as an opportunity to learn clinically but also as a chance to practice compassionate care.