Alumni Focus on Noor Abushagur
DR. ABUSHAGUR'S STORY
El Paso, Texas
Which institution did you attend for your undergraduate degree? What was your major?
The University of Texas El Paso. Biological Sciences
Which degree(s), related to optometry, did you earn at Ohio State?
Who were your mentors at the College of Optometry? Who had a positive effect on your education?
Oh gosh … I truly have so many, but here are a few:
Vondolee Delgado-Nixon, PhD: I will always remember how overwhelmed I felt during my first semester of optometry school. I spent countless hours in Dr. VDN’s office during my first year just going over exams, asking questions, trying to understand the most complex topics. Her patience, kindness, and enthusiasm for teaching made a world of difference.
Rachele Siegel (OD’17): She was a year above me in school and was always giving me tips and insight on what to expect. We’d go to dinner whenever our busy schedules allowed it, and our dinners always turned into four-hour ordeals.
Lauren Haverly (OD’14): I met her the night of my interview at Ohio State and she immediately made me fall in love with Ohio State.
Dawn Goedde (OD’04): She was my first attending and though she set the bar so high, her kindness and patience was inspiring and motivating every day in clinic.
DR. ABUSHAGUR'S CAREER IN OPTOMETRY
Name of your employer(s) and title, including location.
Associate Optometrist, Vision Veritas EyeCare in Dallas, Texas
Give us a glimpse of your typical day as an optometrist.
I am an optometrist at a private practice in Dallas, Texas. It is a Vision Source office with a boutique optical. I love my job because of the flexibility I have been given to focus on what I enjoy within optometry. My day consists of routine care with a sprinkle of ocular disease (which is what I did my residency in!), sclerals, myopia control, dry eye, etc. No two days are the same, and I love the variety found in private practice. It always keeps things interesting, and I still learn new things every day.
Which optometric issues concern you the most?
Online contact lens sales. There is so much error that occurs, which concerns me as a doctor trying to take care of my patients.
Why did you choose a career in optometry?
I had my first visit with my own optometrist when I was in the second grade and always enjoyed my yearly visits. I loved the work-life balance of optometry and I just found the eyes to be so fascinating.
Where do you hope to see your optometric career in five years?
There is no telling. I have tried to just go with the flow and not force my career in any specific direction, which has led me to a very happy optometric career so far! I have always loved teaching. Maybe one day I could be an extern site for students. I worked with many OPT-IV students during my residency and would love the chance to work with students again someday.
What is one piece of advice you can give OPT-IV students as they prepare to graduate and begin their optometric careers?
It is okay to not have it all figured out! Plan a fun trip after graduation. Consider a residency; it will open up more doors for you. Remember that your first job does not have to be your last job. Do what is right, not what is easy.
DR. ABUSHAGUR'S OHIO STATE EXPERIENCE
What were your most memorable moments at Ohio State?
Finding out that my friends and I passed boards. Traveling on SVOSH trips. Networking at conferences. Tailgates and football games at the EYE house. Taco Thursdays with Taylor Randich, my classmate and best friend.
What do Ohio State and the College of Optometry mean to you and your family?
I have so much love for Ohio State! It was the best decision I have ever made and I would do it all again in a heartbeat. Everyone who knows me (outside of Ohio State) knows how big of a deal Ohio State is to me. Ohio State gave me the best education I could have asked for, and brought some of the most genuine people into my life.
How do you stay connected with the College of Optometry?
Conferences. I am a member of AAO and try to attend as many annual meetings as I am able to. That has been a great way to connect with former classmates and faculty. Social media - I love following along to see what the College of Optometry is doing.
My best friends and I also plan a monthly FaceTime to stay connected with each other. We also plan a yearly trip to see each other; this year we went to Nashville.
What has the COVID-19 experience taught you about patient care?
It has taught me to always expect the unexpected.
DR. ABUSHAGUR'S FUN FACTS
What are your current hobbies, volunteer work and interests?
Health and fitness. Since graduating optometry school, I have joined a gym community (D1 Sports Training) that has become a second family to me. D1 has gotten me into the best shape I have been in, and the relationships I have formed with the members have been very special to me.
While a student, I was very active with SVOSH trips. So in 2019, a volunteer opportunity in Ethiopia arose and I jumped on it. Though it has been difficult to return due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I do look forward to the day when I get the chance again.
If not an optometrist, I would be …
I love interior design, so maybe something to do with that. Or maybe I’d open up a floral/plant business.