June 8, 2013 | POSTED BY | Articles, Pre-Optometry School
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During my time as the president of the Grant MacEwan Pre-Optometry Club, I found myself connecting with people, advertising the club, and explaining why they should join.

The reason to join a club depends on what you want from the club, and what the club can offer you. I had asked members of many pre-optometry clubs why they chose to join, what they took away from joining the club, and what they most enjoyed about participating with a pre-optometry club.

Here is a summarized list:

Preparing you for optometry

  • Prepares you for the OAT
    • What it is
    • How to study for it
    • Extra OAT materials (Exam-Krackers, OAT books, flashcards, etc.)
  • Helps to narrow down school choices specifically to your needs546975_10150668313644088_625137673_n
  • Brings in multiple optometry schools
    • Learn more about school specifics (locations/tuition/living/etc.)
    • Ask questions and receive answers
  • Provides volunteer opportunities
  • Converse with optometrists, ophthalmologists, and opticians
    • FINALLY determine the difference between the three
  • Receive volunteer hours (helpful when applying to schools)
  • Increases the knowledge of other schools
  • Learn how to professionally represent yourself while still having fun
  • Mock interviews specific to what you should expect from optometry schools
  • Learn about the specific optometry school application requirements
    • How many volunteer hours, if any, are needed
    • What are the pre-requisites required
    • How many letters of reference do you need AND from who
  • Meeting people with similar goals/challenges/aspirations
    • Providing support for each other
  • Collect glasses for third world countries
  • Applying your skills and knowledge
  • Provides internship and job shadowing opportunities
  • Builds connections between optometry students, optometrists, and schools
  • Provides you with screening opportunities
  • Learn about general eye health
  • “It makes an impression on admissions and certainly comes into play in the interview” (Jane Ann Munroe – Director of Admissions, SCCO)

Creates a better overall individual

  • 156386_10151379139925860_1983668015_nHelps you to become more organized
  • Allows you to become an efficient planner/coordinator
  • Creates a more energetic/positive person
  • Helps you to become a MUCH better public speaker
  • Teaches you how to write and prepare emails/resumes/etc. more professionally
  • Learn how to produce effective advertisements (media/posters/etc.)
  • Allows you to delegate work
  • Learn how to budget money
  • Increases your interview skills
  • Creates leadership skills
  • Better and more effective communicative skills
  • Teaches you how to manage your time
  • Helps you to make logical and informative decisions
  • Creates a better understanding on how to network
  • Creates a foundation for better personal skills

 

IF YOU DO NOT HAVE A CLUB START ONE! – Click here for a guide “How to Start a Pre-Optometry Club”

Sara Davies and I chose to start a club at Grant MacEwan because there was not one offered. We felt that it was really difficult to do everything on our own, and joined, two heads are better than one after all. Starting a club also comes with many benefits: being the president/co-founder, it looks great on an application, and you get to determine how the club will be run.