Latest News Kentucky College of Optometry Appoints Donnie Akers as Interim Associate Dean By Staff Monday, July 10, 2017 12:27 AM Donnie Akers. PIKEVILLE, Ky.— The University of Pikeville-Kentucky College of Optometry (KYCO) has appointed Donnie Akers, OD, as interim associate dean for academic affairs, effective July 1. Akers will work as the chief reviewer and developer of the faculty and the academic curriculum for KYCO, according to an announcement on the school’s website.“Dr. Akers comes to the role with a distinguished career in both private practice in Kentucky as well as an optometrist in the Veterans Administration Health System,” vice president for optometric education and KYCO founding dean Andrew Buzzelli, OD, said in the announcement. “He brings demonstrated leadership to the executive council with two years as the chair of KYCO’s faculty council.” A number of appointed faculty, as well as newly hired faculty, will assist Akers in making the transition to his new position, according to the announcement. He also will continue his overall responsibility for the gross anatomy course and the virtual anatomy laboratory he developed.Last fall, after more than three years of planning, KYCO welcomed its inaugural class of 65 optometry students. The school, which expects to admit about 60 students per class for a total of 240, will provide for the underserved in Central Appalachia and other rural areas of the country, according to its website.