Francesca Marchetti is the Councilor for the Association of Optometrists, as well as an experienced Clinical Liaison Lead at Midland Eye in Solihull.
Prospect Health’s Optometry Team have been working closely with Francesca, discussing the ways in which optometry students can make the most of their work experience whilst at university and why it is so important to use work experience as an opportunity to excel ahead of your peers…
Optical careers are becoming ever more popular, good salaries, opportunities for clinical specialisms and the mix of medical and commercial expertise makes it a very attractive career path. Francesca is a firm believer in taking advantage of every opportunity whilst studying to be an optometrist and here you will find her top tips for succeeding as an optom student and securing that dream optometry role on qualification.
Francesca’s ultimate quick line of advice to all optometry students is…
Get out there and get a job in optometric practice.
The sooner the better.
It’s absolutely crucial to securing a pre-reg position.
Get your CV slap bang up to date.
Optometry students who take the initiative of securing a role in an optometric practice whilst studying benefit from:
- Building their empathy and people skills – these cannot be learnt in a classroom and makes for being a fabulous optometrist
- Understanding administrative work and audits – when coming to your pre-reg role you will be already up to date with NHS forms and paperwork expectations so you can hit the ground running and concentrate on clinical skills
- The practice you work for could become your pre-reg placement - especially if you are enthusiastic and show commitment, or they will be able to provide you with a reference giving you an edge to your peers
When working in your optometric practice there are a number of things you can do to make sure you get as much as you can from your experience:
Enjoy it all
Smile at everyone – colleagues and patients
Network and get yourself known – the optometry world is small, be known for the right reasons!
Thinking of your student optometric job as one long interview can help you keep focused on what you want to gain from your experience. You will be constantly watched by your managers and supervisors so be sure to listen intently, communicate clearly and effectively and smile as much as you can – keep on top of your tasks, go the extra mile for colleagues and patients and be a positive and invaluable presence for your team.
Try to learn as much as you can about the day to day running of the practice and do not be afraid to ask for help and advice, this demonstrates enthusiasm and the willingness to learn and people will enjoy sharing their knowledge.
Be a team player, be part of the “practice family” join in the chit-chat in the staff room, go to any social functions put on by the practice
Being a successful student employee will allow you to become a successful Optometrist.
You can find more advice and support ahead of your pre-reg placement in our other blog articles:
If you would like to learn more about the roles we have available for newly-or-soon-to-be-qualified optometrists please pick up the phone and speak to the friendly team at Prospect Health on 01423 813 452 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Details of the team can be found here