Sydney Madrigal Is Representing Her Fellow Latinxs

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, April 12, 2019 2:04 PM Sydney Madrigal is a third-year student pursuing her Master’s degree in Public Health as well as her doctorate in optometry at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Though she spent most of her life in South Florida, Madrigal is of Cuban decent and has created Latina Optometrist, a light-hearted and inspirational page that gives a voice to one of the minority groups in the optical industry. “Upon starting school in Birmingham, I knew I would be a minority in my class, but over time I realized I was also a minority in the field,” Madrigal explained. “My parents didn’t know much about applying to optometry school, I was pretty much on my own; this is what made me really start to think about the potential impact I could make.”

It Takes Two: BFFs Shreya Bhandari and Lara Bregman are Tackling Instagram Together

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, March 29, 2019 3:07 PM Shreya Bhandari and Lara Bregman are second year optometry students at the Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry. The pair originates from Toronto and while both went to the University of Western Ontario for undergrad, it wasn’t until they moved to the States that they connected and became friends. “It’s kind of a funny story actually. Lara and I attended the University of Western Ontario but we did not know each other,” Bhandari explained. “We first met at our optometry school interview at Salus in Pennsylvania. We instantly connected and spent the entire interview day chatting. When Lara saw that I joined the Nova incoming class of 2021 Facebook group, she reached out to me and we have been best friends ever since.”

Vady Khalil Instagram Page Is as a ‘Beacon of Light’ for Potential OD Students

By Stephanie Sengwe
Monday, March 11, 2019 12:30 AM For Vady Khalil, a second-year optometry student at the Western University of Health Sciences—College of Optometry, his journey to the U.S. was not an easy one. Khalil came to the U.S. as a refugee in 2008 after having migrated within the Middle East for five years. His father, who was an employee at the United Nations in Iraq, was severely injured when his office building was bombed in August of 2003 and eventually had to be moved to Europe for treatment, causing Khalil to be separated from his family—his mother and two younger brothers moved to London to be with his father while he and his sister moved to Jordan.

#BlackGirlMagic: Nishan Pressley Is All About Representation on Social Media

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, March 1, 2019 12:20 PM Nishan Pressley is a third-year optometry student at the Salus University—Pennsylvania College of Optometry. The first African-American candidate to be accepted into the Accelerated Scholars Optometry Program, (which allows students to get their doctorate in three years versus the traditional four-year program) she will officially be Doctor Pressley on May 23, 2019. Her Instagram page, Nishvn, is a display of all aspects of her life—from her journey through optometry school, her relationship with her boyfriend and her love for travel.

Jennifer Centeno’s ‘Opticianista_LA’ Combines Her Love for Luxury Retail and Optical

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, February 22, 2019 12:31 PM Jennifer Centeno is a California-based optician who’s been practicing for four years. Her Instagram page, Opticianista_LA is a hub of eyewear, inspirational quotes, tips on lash care and eye-related trinkets. Before becoming an optician, Centeno was a luxury retail manager and she has carried her love for the finer things in life into her practice as an optician. “Opticianista_LA is space for me to discuss my thoughts on topics ranging from frames, lens treatments, fashion, beauty, and day-to-day operations,” she said. “I love combining my experience in luxury retail, and optical because the two are really similar.”

Dr. Joseph Allen’s ‘Dr. Eye Health’ Focuses on Teaching the Sciences of Eyecare

By Stephanie Sengwe
Monday, February 11, 2019 12:45 AM Doctor Eye Health is a 6-month-old educational YouTube Channel geared toward anyone who is interested in knowing more about the eyes, disease and vision products. Its creator, Joseph Allen, OD, is a graduate of the Rosenberg School of Optometry who did his residency in ocular disease and vision rehabilitation at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center. Though he has been working on Doctor Eye Health since January of last year, his first video didn’t launch until July 2018 due to the amount of research he wanted to conduct prior.

Doing it for the Ladies: Dr. Brasfield’s Instagram Aims to Make Women Feel ‘Beautiful and Fabulous’

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, February 8, 2019 12:18 PM Dr. Athena Brasfield’s eponymous Instagram page, drbrasfield, is a hub of color and scenery reflective of the woman who runs it. Brasfield launched the page in October of 2018, and today it stands at 4,066 followers. The aim was to create a space that showcased not just the clinical side of optometry, but also the more fun, fashionable and creative side of the science as well. “I used to want to work in the fashion industry when I was a young girl, but I wanted to do something with more meaning, such as helping communities and giving back to others,” she stated.

Dr. Joseph Allen’s ‘Dr. Eye Health’ Focuses on Teaching the Sciences of Eyecare

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, January 25, 2019 3:01 PM Doctor Eye Health is a 6-month-old educational YouTube Channel geared toward anyone who is interested in knowing more about the eyes, disease and vision products. Its creator, Joseph Allen, OD, told VMail Weekend, “I have always been a visual person. I grew up watching a lot of movies and playing video games.”

Kimberly Chan, OD, Is All About Creating a Work-Life Balance

By Stephanie Sengwe, Contributing Editor
Monday, January 21, 2019 12:32 AM Kimberly Chan, OD, fell in love with her profession when she got her first pair of contact lenses as a young girl. With contact lenses, Chan, who has had bad eyesight since she was six-years-old, felt as though a new world had opened up to her; suddenly, she didn’t feel restricted by her thick glasses and was able to explore her potential in sports and other hobbies with a new boost of confidence. Years later, she got her Doctor of Optometry Degree from the New England College of Optometry and currently practices in her home city of Toronto.

Vady Khalil Instagram Page Serves as a ‘Beacon of Light’ for Potential Optometry Students

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, January 18, 2019 11:07 AM For Vady Khalil, a second-year optometry student at the Western University of Health Sciences—College of Optometry, his journey to the U.S. was not an easy one. Khalil came to the U.S. as a refugee in 2008 after having migrated within the Middle East for five years. Last year, he turned his personal Instagram page into The Photometrist—an eyewear photography-based, carefully curated page, with a distinctive rustic aesthetic.

Kimberly Chan, OD, Is All About Creating a Work-Life Balance

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, December 14, 2018 2:28 PM Kimberly Chan, OD, fell in love with her profession when she got her first pair of contact lenses as a young girl. With contact lenses, Chan, who has had bad eyesight since she was six-years-old, felt as though a new world had opened up to her; suddenly, she didn’t feel restricted by her thick glasses and was able to explore her potential in sports and other hobbies with a new boost of confidence. Years later, she got her Doctor of Optometry Degree from the New England College of Optometry and currently practices in her home city of Toronto.

Shelby Brogdon, OD, Is the New Optometrist on the Block

By Stephanie Sengwe
Friday, November 30, 2018 11:42 AM Shelby Brogdon, OD, graduated from the University of the Incarnate Word Rosenberg School of Optometry in San Antonio, Texas this past May. A native of Benton, Ark., she moved back home after graduation and now practices at Simmons Eye Care and Teague Eye and Vision Clinic in Little Rock. Though she is just starting out as an optometrist, (she has a bachelor’s from Arkansas State University), she has cultivated her Instagram page, Eye Brog Doc, for about a year now and it’s sure to keep growing as she moves forward as an optometrist.

Danielle Richardson, OD’s ‘Fierce Clarity’ is All About Accessibility and Relatability

By Stephanie Sengwe
Wednesday, November 21, 2018 11:56 AM Danielle Richardson is a fulltime optometrist at Optometrix in Hollywood, Calif. A graduate of Indiana University School of Optometry, she created her Instagram page, Fierce Clarity as a way to combine her love for all things health and wellness—from yoga, plant-based recipes, meditation, motivational quotes and personal development.

Nadia Afkhami’s ‘Eye Am Nadia’ Functions as her Social Media Personal Diary

By Stephanie Sengwe

Friday, November 9, 2018 12:57 PM Nadia Afkhami is a second-year optometry student at the Western University of Health Science in Pomona, Calif. With a master’s degree in biomedical sciences from Barry University in Miami, Afkhami made the decision to pursue optometry after observing the relationships optometrists often make with their patients. After having lived in Orlando for most of her life, (she was born in Iran and migrated when she was 2), Afkhami decided to create Eye Am Nadia in an effort to chronicle her life as a budding optometrist in California for her friends back home to see. Now with over 2,000 followers, the Instagram page has become a community.