President: Astiney Franklin
Hometown: Mobile, Alabama
Optometry school: MCPHS
Why I choose optometry: My mother was a social worker for years and my grandparents have had vision problems and low vision just brought together my two passions: family and helping people. Being in low vision allows me to really talk to a patient; get to know them and help them live their best life. I walked in optometry school with purpose.
Interesting Fact: I love to get on Pinterest and make meals for my family and friends. I belong on Master Chef!
Passion outside of Optometry: I love to be surrounded by positive people and have a good time. School can be tough sometimes so any opportunity I can unwind and travel keeps me motivated.
Why I choose NOSA: This is the only organization that I feel is large enough to network but small enough to learn almost everyone in the organization. Being a NOSA member feels like family and I’m excited of where we are headed this year.
Vice President: Aaron Ransome
Hometown : Pueblo, CO
Optometry School: University of Houston College of Optometry
Why I Choose NOSA: Prior to Optometry school I participated in a VOSH trip to St. Martin where I preformed lensometry on over 400 pair of glasses, a skill that I hadn’t even learned yet! From this experience, I learned the value of service and volunteer work.
Interesting Fact: Microbiology Adjunct Faculty at Metropolitan State College of Denver for 4 yrs and a Molecular Biologist for 4 yrs prior to optometry school.
Passions outside of Optometry: My wife, cats and hiking
Treasurer: Dana Shannon
Hometown: Hazel Crest, Illinois (suburb right outside of Chicago)
Optometry School: University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Optometry
Why I choose optometry: I was inspired by her optometrist growing up. She loved the idea of having personal patient relationship, as well as the immediate reward of improving her patients sight by providing glasses and contact lenses. I choose to be apart of NOSA based on its mission. I love to give back to minorities and under-served communities
Interesting fact: Dana studied abroad in Vigo, Spain for a semester during undergrad. She is also fluent in Spanish.
Passion outside of optometry: Playing tennis whenever she gets a chance. Dana is a former Division 1 tennis player. She began playing tennis at 11 years old and is currently a private tennis coach.
Recording Secretary: Tasneem Maner
Optometry School: Pennsylvania College of Optometry
Why optometry/ NOSA: I’ve always found happiness in the healthcare field. When I was in high school I started a recreational therapy program for the patients of the Acute Rehab Center of Princeton Hospital. I loved caring for people, and I soon discovered that optometry was one of the best fields for doctors to spend quality time with their patients. Additionally, the eyes are truly the windows into the health of the whole person. I loved that I could diagnose uncontrolled diabetes, hypertension, infectious disease, and even brain tumors with just a light and some lenses. Optometry seems to be the perfect medical career.
Interesting facts: Singing, songwriting, drawing, and painting relax me.
Passions outside optometry: I love traveling the world and learning from the locals. I try to make the most of scholarship and fellowship funding to afford these opportunities, and I’m grateful I’ve been fully funded to travel to and study/ work in Bosnia, Serbia, Greece, London, Mexico, and across the United States.
Corresponding Secretary: Monique Mohammed
Hometown: Roosevelt, NY
School: State University of New York College of Optometry
Why did you join NOSA/optometry? In my senior year of college during winter break, I participated in a pre-optometry program at SUNY where I was exposed to both the didactic and clinical portion of optometry school. This program exposed me to the optometric profession and the great ability of optometry to co-manage various ocular diseases, I have been sold out for Optometry ever since. During my first year when I realized NOSA not only helps pre-optometry students but also they are heavily involved with enrichment-underserved communities, I definitely had to join.
Interesting Fact: I earned my master’s at Adelphi University while studying for the OAT. I love food and I enjoy cooking different ethnic cuisines!
Passions outside of optometry: 3 words: Nature + relaxation + travel. I am always ready for a road trip and just hanging out by a beach or in the park with family and friends!
Parliamentarian: Ashleigh Yates
Hometown: Pearland, Tx
School: Illinois College of Optometry
Why optometry/ NOSA: I found NOSA at a difficult time in my optometric career. My local chapter put me in touch with some NOA docs who really poured into my life and mentored me. In addition to the great service that the NOA and NOSA do, we are very much a family. A family that I would not have made it this far without.
Interesting fact: I’m trilingual! I grew up speaking Spanish with my mother who was a Spanish teacher. I also studied Mandarin Chinese for four years and studied abroad in Xi’An, China twice! I hope to learn even more languages.
Passions outside Optometry: I enjoy writing and have written 3 full length novels while in school that I hope to have published some day. I am also an avid reader and an Orangetheory enthusiast!
Student Resource Liaison: Walter Jackson
Hometown: Columbus Georgia
Optometry School: The University of Alabama School of Optometry
Why I choose Optometry: I worked with an optometrist while in college and realized that there is so much to eye care and wanted to provide those services to his patients. I plan to work with the army for about 3 years. After that I plans on opening a private practice in his hometown to be close to family and help out the community.
Passions outside of Optometry: Gym, handing out with friend, collect fresh water fish, play intramural sports like softball, basketball, football, kickball, or anything that has ball .
Any Advice for First year Optometry Students: “If you’re moving to a new city enjoy the city. Get your work done but make sure you also enjoy yourself’
Historian 1: Takeva Hicks
Hometown: Holly Springs, MS
Optometry School: University of the Incarnate Word-Rosenberg School of Optometry, San Antonio, TX
Why I chose Optometry: I was introduced to NOSA by an upperclassman during my first year. After going to my first NOA convention I felt at home. Everyone is so welcoming, and it is such a close-knit environment. It is very rewarding to give back to students that don’t have the same opportunities as myself.
Interesting fact: I enjoy watching reality tv. My favorite shows are Bachelorette, Bachelor, and Bachelor in Paradise. She also likes Love and Hip-Hop.
Passion outside of optometry: Spending as much time with family and friends. I am currently 12 hours away from home since beginning optometry school so I like to spend time with my family as much as I can.
Historian 2: Beverly Atueyi
Hometown: Baltimore Maryland
Optometry School: Kentucky College of Optometry
Why I choose optometry? I wanted to go into the health field and I realized that my optometrist was the only doctor I genuinely enjoyed seeing. This motivated me to become an optometrist because I wanted provide the same joy to my future patient
What’s the best part of optometry school? My connections with friends and professors. Also, discovering the numerous ways we can practice the profession.
Hobbies outside of Optometry School: Hanging out with friends, watching movies, and going to the gym
Plans after graduation: I plan to return to Maryland to provide primary eye care to the community, family, and friends.
NOA Liason to the Board: Courtney Goode, OD
Hometown: Fort Washington, MD
Optometry School: Salus University – PCO
Residency: Fresno VA Medical Center
Why I chose optometry: I developed a passion for helping those who struggle with blindness and low vision at a young age by assisting family and friends. This has translated into my career. I now work at a private practice in Maryland. I particularly enjoy helping Low Vision, Specialty Contact Lens, Pediatric, and Geriatric patients.
Interesting fact: I recently started boxing, and I’m really enjoying it! I’d better protect my eyes!