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Laura's Blog

The following entries are presented from most recent to oldest posts.

Laura and friends in graduation caps and gowns

E Pluribus Unum

Out of many, one. Only four short years ago, each of us arrived in Boston on our own, bringing with us our unique backgrounds, experiences and expectations. We entered the imposing iron gates of NECO alone, each wondering what fate awaited us beyond our first day. Yet here we are, sitting together…

illustration of people running and one crossing finish line

Approaching the Finish Line

Today, as I write this blog, it is Monday, March 14th, the date marking the beginning of my fourth week at my last clinical rotation of fourth year. Only 62 days left until graduation…heralding caps, gowns, celebrations and our passage into the real world of optometry.

Laura and her mentor

Planes, Trains, and Interviews

This past week has been a whirlwind of excitement and exhaustion as I traveled across the tri-state area to interview for residency programs. Interviews: To some it represents an hour where a panel of experienced, distinguished men and women question and judge everything that you have worked so hard…

photo of student in dark examining patient with title Clinical Education

Tackling the Private Practice Rotation

Upon my return from England, I began my third clinical rotation at a private practice in New Jersey. Gone are the days where I could take an hour to spend with each patient, perform any diagnostic testing I deemed necessary, or take a few breaks during the day to enjoy a spot of English tea with milk.…

Laura working with patient

A Farewell to Britain!

As the head of the ophthalmoscope pops out of place, I return the two pieces of the instrument back into their holder. The soft “click” closes not only the carrier of my equipment but signals the end of my experience here in England. With a last scan of the room that has been my second home for…

Laura and doctor standing outside of office

Got Brew?  My Second Clinical Rotation in Birmingham, UK

It has been three weeks since my arrival at Aston University, England, the site of my second clinical rotation. I am happy to report that I have not been hit by a car from oncoming traffic in the other direction, I have learned to make the perfect English “brew” (tea with milk), and I’ve increased…

Laura with large group at Newington

My First Clinical Rotation: Veterans Hospital Newington

“It’s a jungle out there” is only a figure of speech… or is it? It was less than three months ago that I first beheld the land behind the large sign announcing in deep red letters: “Veterans Hospital Newington”. Roaming the halls of VA Newington seems a little like inhabiting the famed…

Dr. Rucker and Laura in front of research poster

Welcome to ARVO 2015!

“All Group B’s, now ready to board!” announced the flight attendant over the loudspeaker as I prepared to travel to ARVO 2015. ARVO is the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology and its Annual meeting welcomes researchers in eye and vision science to share their research.

child model walking on the runway with announcer standing next to her

Vision Expo East in the Big Apple

The minute the clock struck 5 pm on Wednesday night, our class stampeded in unison through the doors which had held us captive during board exams for the last two days. As I pushed my way out of the crowd, the wind gently brushed my face with the crisp, fresh scent of spring. It felt as thought the…

Life at Specwarts Part II:  The Final Battle

The continuation of the magical world at NECO preparing for the NBEO Part I Board Exams (see “Life at Specwarts” for the first episode)

Laura and two friends in dresses

No Further Bets!

As I ascend the famed mahogany staircase, I once again find myself standing in what used to be NECO’s foyer, now transformed into Ian Fleming’s Casino Royale. This is all part of Alcon Night, a yearly fundraiser by VOSH (Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity) to help fund a medical mission…

Laura standing with three students

Welcome to Academy 2014

It’s that time of year again…when the air feels a bit crisper, the pea coat is pulled out of the closet and New England transforms into a Norman Rockwell painting, full of rich, warm colors contrasted by the deep blue Charles River. Behind the iron gates of the New England College of Optometry,…

Welcome to Las Vegas sign

Frames, Names, and Games

It’s eight o’clock on a Saturday and the students shuffle back in… Faint music plays in the distance, teasingly rapping on the NECO classroom window. “All right class, time to continue with ocular disease” the instructor calls to reclaim our attention. Such is the fate of us third-years,…

beach at shoreline

Making Waves

A slight gust of warm wind gently tickles my face. I raise my head from the beach chair to leisurely observe my toes peeking out from a pair of flip-flops. The bright sun hovers high overhead in a cloudless, clear blue sky, indicating around noontime. I watch hypnotically as the waves wash against…

Person running marathon

The Halfway Mark

As I push my way through a sea of winter jackets, I finally reach the railing. Panting for breath, I peer out onto the long strip of pavement that denotes the path for the 118th Boston Marathon. I look to my right in anticipation of the racers cresting the hill, but my gaze is only met by a blazing…

May the ODs Be Ever in Your Favor!

Today is March 22, 2014. In the past, this day has just been a typical day, people going about their usual business, each living their separate ordinary lives, indistinguishable from any other one. But from today forward, this day will no longer be mundane. Instead, it will be a day that no one will…

Stuck in Limbo

Sprinting through January in the blink of an eye, we barely caught our breath between an action-packed ski trip to Killington, Vermont, and the glittery excitement of Vegas Night held each year at our school. In contrast, February seems like a sticky mud puddle impeding your every step. As I pass…

Life at Specwarts

A buzz swells among the crowds milling on the platform as the faint horn in the distance heralds the arrival of the train. It is January 3rd and snow fairies dance on the rail tracks below. I anxiously stare up at the marching hands of the large clock looming overhead. My gaze focuses on a pure white…

Laura and wreath

Another Year Over

After the hype of October, November always seems to be the forgotten month (besides Thanksgiving, of course). The weather turns cold, the days fall into a mundane routine, and the thought of the dreaded finals looms overhead like a thunder-bearing sky. However, one thing I have failed to touch upon…

Students at table with blindfolds on

Scares and Fares

As I hurry along the abandoned streets in the early morning hours, eeriness hovers like a thick fog. Dark, ominous clouds hang from the sky, the smothering silence driving a chill into my quivering bones. Are those ghostly shadows dancing over pale-colored bricks? “Crash!” My body whips around,…