Stephanie Callisto has been re-elected as co-president of the Flinders University Optometry Student Association (FUOSA) in 2017. A fourth-year student, Stephanie says new students can always rely on the wisdom and support of students in higher year levels.
I always wanted to be around people, so I knew I needed a career that involved helping and communicating with people on a daily basis. It wasn’t until I was attending my yearly appointment with the optometrist who I had seen for over 12 years that I realised what I wanted to do.
Optometrists manage eye diseases, but more than that they improve the patient’s quality of life, aid children’s learning and even save lives. The fascination with the eye and a passion to further understand my own vision lead me to where I am now.
I am extremely passionate about the health and wellbeing of others. My ultimate goal is to use the skills I have developed throughout my optometry degree to help those in remote communities throughout Australia.
I chose Flinders because of the range of learning experiences that are provided for its students. Locations for clinical placements have increased and with exposure to all areas of the optometry field, students are able to have a hands-on experience.
FUOSA has connected students from all year levels who have incredible ideas, outlooks and vision.
Along with my co-president Sarah Golfis, and the rest of FUOSA, we would like to increase the number of opportunities to raise funds for charities and the communities who are in need. We were very successful last year raising funds from a raffle at the Annual Eye-Ball for the Aboriginal Health Council of South Australia and we would love to increase our ability to contribute.
I look forward to seeing the FUOSA team’s progress through 2017 to make a difference to the work/life balance of other optometry students. I believe that a key purpose for FUOSA’s existence is to gather students together outside of study so they can get to know each other, allowing them to take a well-deserved break and celebrate how far they have come.
The first year of university can be an extremely exciting and daunting experience but it only gets better. It is the perfect time to meet some amazing people.
Going to university events and social activities are the best way to meet like-minded people who can be difficult to find in the large daunting crowds in the lecture theatre. Similarly, joining social media groups and year-level pages will allow you to be updated on students selling textbooks, equipment and upcoming events.
The Flinders optometry community has grown and formed tight bonds across all year levels, strengthened by the mentor programs and year-level co-ordinators. Other students will always be willing to listen, give advice and offer a little encouragement. Just know that there are people at university who are always available to help.