The Optometry Student Overachiever and The Underachiever: Finding Common Ground

Meet Kendall.


Kendall is a third year optometry student, and has just been named the new president of her class. Kendall is known to be a great leader after showing her classmates her capabilities of delegating tasks as the Chairwoman of her school’s Contact Lens and Cornea Section Committee. Kendall also decided to run for her school’s equipment representative position in order to make some extra cash on the side, and at the same time learn a little more about the tools she will be using during her career. Did I mention she also writes part-time for an awesome online optometry student magazine? Over the summer, Kendall took up an internship position at her local optometry office that she found by emailing several companies searching for a temporary position for an optometry student. As soon as her internship came to an end she flew to San Diego, California to attend her second Optometry’s Meeting. Everyone at school knows who she is, and gives her praise for working so hard to accomplish her goals.

Meet John.


John lives on the same block as Kendall in the same student-housing unit. They have hung out within the same group of friends since starting optometry school two years ago. John is known as the class clown. He loves to make all of the students laugh and sheds some humor on most of the serious situations faced as a graduate student. John is very well known around school and has made friends in every class in the program. John loves to party, he tends to push his limit on the weekends but always seems to pull it together and get back on track before the school week starts. Everyone depends on John to let them know what the plans are for the weekend, since he usually knows how to have a great time. John is always present at school sponsored events, but for some reason never thought about helping to set one up himself. People love to take his advice, but John is usually just expected to be present. Exam time means crunch time to John, he limits his tendency to go out and hits the books just in time to retain enough information to pass the exam – and he always does. “Why get an A when you can get a B?” is one of John’s mantras.

Fast forward to graduation day: as Kendall addresses her classmates in her presidential farewell speech, John is standing in first row with a smile ear to ear realizing he is now an OD. Kendall accepts her degree and sits down next to John who both turn towards each other in pure excitement. “Party tonight!” is the last thing Kendall whispers to John before she goes to enjoy graduation dinner with her family.

Kendall, the overachiever and John the underachiever are both graduating ODs. They both worked hard in optometry school in different ways, yet they are both in the exact same position once their academic career has ended. Kendall was able to obtain an offer for a position at an Optometry/MD office in her home state thanks to her networking abilities at all of the conventions she attended. Meanwhile, John also was offered a position from a fourth year friend he made as a second year who currently owns his own private practice and wants to expand with John’s help. John met him for the first time at a party.

ImageWe all know a Kendall and a John. The common ground between these two are that they have both achieved their goal of becoming an optometrist and being successful at what they do. Whether you identify yourself as Kendall or John, know that you are meant to become an amazing OD and you will eventually reach your career goals with ease.

(Note: All characters and photos of characters are fictional, not based on any specific person)

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