Hi, I’m Jenny Minnick, I’m currently a second-year in the Optometry Scholar’s program. A little about me, I love dogs more than anything! I’m a local student from Skippack, Pa., and went to Lafayette College in Easton, Pa. Basically, I’m a homebody and haven’t ever lived outside of Pennsylvania. So, when it came to looking at optometry schools it was nice to have an option so close to home and the three-year year-round Scholars Program was just a bonus. Initially, I didn’t know much about the Scholars Program, but I really liked the idea of doing a three-year program because I thought it would help to keep the information fresh in my head (even if that meant giving up longer breaks). Since starting school, I have come to appreciate the Scholars Program even more because of the small student-to-doctor ratio and the close relationships that have formed in our class.
Just to give you an idea what a day in our shoes is like, I’ll walk you through it! I’ll go through a typical Friday since they are usually an interesting mix of classes and clinic.
Unlike most people, I’m a morning person! I love being up early and getting things done before most people even think about being awake. So even if we have class at 10 a.m., I’ll probably still be up at 6 a.m.
6:00 a.m.: I wake up early and take a shower, and then I throw on some clothes for clinic. Admittedly I spend too long picking out something to wear because I like to mix and match outfits and jewelry. Then I watch an episode of whatever TV show I’m re-watching at that time (I’m a big fan of Scrubs and Parks and Rec), but if you have other suggestions please let me know because I don’t know how many more times I can watch them before I start quoting them daily!
7:00 a.m.: I’m out the door, I would say I’m off to school, but as a good Eastern Pa., native I have to make a stop at Wawa. For those who don’t know, Wawa is a wonderful chain of convenience stores that sell everything a person could need – especially food and caffeine, which are staples in a grad student life. Okay, NOW I’m off to school, where I will try and get a little studying in before class starts, whether it is at 8 or 10 a.m. We don’t have a set class for Friday mornings, but we typically have at least one two-hour class in the morning.
12:00 p.m.: Our class migrates down to the café for lunch. We try and catch up with each other, but honestly, we spend so much time together that there probably aren’t that many updates. We do have some pretty funny conversations, so lunch is never boring.
12:45 p.m.: We all make our way over to The Eye Institute and set up for clinic which starts at 1 p.m. We are in clinic until 5 p.m., where we see patients individually. We have been seeing patients since February, so we are starting to get a better idea of the flow of clinic. Since July, we’ve had first-year scholars following us in clinic. We’re part of a buddy system with the first years where each of us has a first year pairing. The system helps first years with the transition into the Scholars Program and into clinic. When clinic is over, we have a round table discussion where we review that day’s interesting cases or cool things we learned. This is really interesting because we can go through pictures and charts with input from our classmates in addition to commentary from our preceptor (or attending doctor) for that particular case.
5:00 p.m.: I’m headed to the school gym – the Hafter Student Center. I have a love-hate relationship with running, but I usually can convince a few of my friends in the class to come with me. Having gym buddies always makes it better!
6:30 p.m.: DINNER TIME! I love food far more than any exercise, so I have definitely been thinking of what I can eat since lunch or more likely since I opened my eyes. On Fridays, we either hang out as a whole class or a group of us; we get dinner and just wind down from the week.
On the weekends we try and get some work done but we also like to have fun as a class! We have played laser tag, have gone to New York City, and have attended optometric conferences.
All in all, I’m glad I chose the Scholars Program as I have met some wonderful people that I continue to learn so much from.