Student Focus on Aaron Deese


Aaron Deese

Name: Aaron Deese
Pronouns: He/Him
Hometown: Ocala, Florida
High School: Vanguard High School
Undergraduate Institution: Florida State University
Undergraduate Degree: Exercise Physiology
Anticipated #OSUopt Graduation Year: 2024


How old were you when you received your first eye exam? What was the experience like for you?

I was in first grade; I was incredibly nervous to be going to another doctor. I had really bad anxiety going to the doctor as a kid. I didn't know what they were going to do during the appointment, I was just hoping I wasn't going to be getting a shot. Actually, the first question I asked the technician was, "Am I getting a shot today?" I was excited to learn that I wasn't going to be getting a shot that day. The eye doctor was my favorite doctor to go to after that.

When did you realize that you wanted to pursue a career in optometry?

I was a sophomore in undergrad when I first shadowed my long-time childhood optometrist. One day of seeing patients was all it took for me to understand the impact I could have in the lives of so many patients, and after that I was sold.

Why did you choose Ohio State Optometry?

Simply put, Ohio State is the best.

What was your first impression of Ohio State Optometry?

I knew I was going to be able to thrive in the environment at Ohio State. I could tell from the very beginning that I was entering a program that was going to be rigorous but rewarding. The further along I get in this education, and especially now being on externs, the more I realize how well prepared I am going to be when I graduate to deliver care at the highest level.

What surprised you most about Ohio State and/or Columbus?

I was surprised by how much there is to do in Columbus. Over the last few years, I have really fallen in love with the city. My partner Kaley and I have loved going to Crew games, exploring new restaurants, and going to the metro parks. There really is so much to do here and we have enjoyed all of it!

Which clubs/organizations have you joined at Ohio State?

I joined Lions Club and EYE (Epsilon Psi Epsilon).

Who has most positively affected you during your time as an optometry student so far?

My friends. I have made numerous lifelong friends in my education here and I owe each and every one of them so much. This education would have been impossible if it weren't for the relationships I've made along the way.

What advice do you have for the Class of 2028 as they navigate the admissions process?

Have fun on your interviews. If you can, take an extra day to do something fun in the city of the schools you're looking at. I looked at my interviews as weekend vacations and I think that really helped take some of the pressure off of the interview process. You need to be able to be happy in the city you go to school in and having time to explore during your interviews is incredibly important when making that decision.