Alumni Focus on Jonathan Andrews (OD’14)

DR. ANDREWS’ STORY

Hometown

New Holland, Pennsylvania

Which degree(s), related to optometry, did you earn at Ohio State?

OD'14

Who were your mentors at the College of Optometry? Who had a positive effect on your education?

While at Ohio State, I had many great faculty who were instrumental in shaping my focus for the future. Dr. Donald Mutti set the foundation of my optometric knowledge in optics, which allowed me to move forward on an educational journey with other coursework. Dr. Mutti was able to effectively portray, explain, and challenge me to understand complex optical scenarios that now help me achieve optimal success and accuracy in everyday care for my patients' visual needs. I am very grateful for his expertise and educational style.

DR. ANDREWS’ CAREER IN OPTOMETRY

Name of your employer(s) and title, including location.

Optometric Associates, President and CEO, New Holland, Pennsylvania

Eye Doctors of Lancaster, Associate Doctor, Ocular Surface Clinic

Give us a glimpse of your typical day as an optometrist.

One day is never the same at our busy, rural practice! Because the practice was established in 1980, there are over 13,000 patient records on file in a town with a population of 5,492. A normal day ranges between 25 and 35 patient encounters ranging from comprehensive ocular examinations, dry eye consultations, glaucoma management, custom contact lens treatment plans, to urgent eye care examinations. Our contact lens service includes Corneal Refractive Therapy, Scleral Contact Lenses, rigid gas permeable multifocal contact lenses, as well as Aphakic contact lens fittings. Being in a rural area, our practice must be prepared for the worsts types of farming injuries and we typically see anywhere from two to four ocular emergencies per day including chemical burns, corneal abrasions and metallic foreign bodies (our most popular type of urgent eye care encounter).

Which optometric issues concern you the most?

The practice of optometry in 10 years will look much different than it does today, as it did 10 years ago, and years before that. Many things concern me, but nothing concerns me more than my fellow colleagues' non-involvement in legislative efforts by groups like the American Optometric Association and state affiliates. I am fortunate that at The Ohio State University College of Optometry, the faculty and staff encouraged all graduates to understand the meaning of student membership, but more importantly lifelong membership as a practicing optometrist. Unfortunately, in my early career in my home state I see colleagues of the same age being less involved with political action committees.

Why did you choose a career in optometry?

Throughout my young life, I was able to observe my father deliver passionate eye care to patients in a peaceful office environment. Through my experiences, I learned that optometry is an excellent way to help improve the livelihood of patients at home, work, and play while having (in some instances) a view of patients' overall wellbeing.

Where do you hope to see your optometric career in five years?

In five years I see myself managing more of the clinical business rather than patient care, and perhaps adding a second and third location to our operations.

What is one piece of advice you can give OPT IV students as they prepare to graduate and begin their optometric careers?

If I was able to give advice to a fourth-year optometry student it would be these three things:

  1. Never skip an optometric business class! Take as many notes as you can.
  2. Learn billing and coding forwards and backwards; no one is responsible for your reimbursement other than yourself.
  3. Surround your future career with supportive staff and colleagues. It is not your clinical skills vs. the doctor down the street but rather your receptionists, atmosphere and overall clinical experience vs. theirs. Continue to invest in the patient experience!

DR. ANDREWS’ OHIO STATE EXPERIENCE

What were your most memorable moments at Ohio State?

My most memorable time at Ohio State as an optometry student was the first-year Mirror Lake jump (when it was still legal to attend the event). There was an abundance of school spirit shown during the Mirror Lake jump with newly found friendships during our first quarter of optometry school and I will never forget the memories!

What does Ohio State and the College of Optometry mean to you and your family?

The Ohio State University College of Optometry prepared me in every way for my future as a business owner and practicing optometrist. Without the education at Ohio State Optometry, I am certain I would not possess the skills I have today professionally and clinically.

How do you stay connected with the College of Optometry?

The easiest way I have stayed connected with classmates is through our Class of 2014 Facebook page. Throughout our interactions there, we have been able to connect on many occasions. It is also fun visiting with faculty and other alumni at the annual American Academy of Optometry meeting.

DR. ANDREWS’ FUN FACTS

What are your current hobbies, volunteer work, interests?

Current hobbies outside of work: enjoying time with my wife Dr. Kathryn Andrews, golfing and home renovations. Currently I am working on a second “home flip” for my real estate company, a side hustle for me other than optometry!

Volunteer work: Through my efforts in Lancaster County I have been performing vision screenings at Amish one-room schools. Currently in the Amish school system there is no formal system in place to help along children who may have vision issues. I am working (one school room at a time) to help open the eyes of children and parents throughout our community regarding comprehensive dilated eye examinations for children of learning ages.

Also volunteer-wise, I am helping my wife (who is also an optometrist) work with a local physician to bring a healthcare facility called the “Medan Initiative” to bring eye care to a remote area in Ethiopia. The goal of this initiative is to develop a sustainable healthcare clinic that will continue for generations.

What was the first concert that you attended / most recent? 

The first concert I ever attending was a P.O.D. concert as an eighth grader. The most recent concert I attended was Eric Church.

What is your favorite autumn-time activity?

During fall, my favorite activity is a Saturday! I love to get out for a long ride on my bicycle prior to coming home to watch college football.

If you could have a superpower, what would it be?

If I could have a superpower, it would be the ability to eat as much pasta without gaining weight. I really enjoy spaghetti with tomato sauce and heavy parmesan cheese.

What’s the best eye pun you’ve ever heard?

“Hakuna Guttata”

If not an optometrist, I would be ...

I would definitely be a commercial helicopter pilot!!