By: Rashda Khan Posted On: 07/20/2020
Connor Christensen, a fourth-year student at the University of Houston College of Optometry, won the American Optometric Student Association's 2020 Optometry Student Bowl.
The key to his success is studying hard.
“Most of the competitors are fourth-year optometry students who have been studying for the first part of our board exams,” Christensen said. “My biggest advice to others wanting to succeed in the Optometry Student Bowl is to study hard and be quick! You’re competing against a lot of other equally prepared students who know their stuff.”
This was Christensen’s second time competing. Last year he competed in-person at the Optometry’s Meeting in St. Louis.
Due to COVID-19, this year’s event was virtual. Essilor of America, the nation’s leading ophthalmic lens manufacturer and sponsor, pulled out all the stops to celebrate the 29th annual competition.
The event was broadcast from the Essilor headquarters in Dallas. Over 1,500 attendees tuned in to watch the contestants — students from all 25 schools and colleges of optometry — answer optometry-related questions.
In addition to bragging rights, Christensen took home $1,000, a host of diagnostic lenses from Volk, and UHCO will house the coveted Ventura Cup until next year’s meeting in Anaheim, CA.
Second-place winner, Alec Waters from the Southern College of Optometry, received $750 and third-place winner, Katelyn Flood of the University of Missouri St. Louis College of Optometry, received $500. As in previous years, each OSB contestant will get a Volk Pan Retinal 2.2 blue-ringed lens donated by Volk Optical. Keeler also provided each contestant with a generous PPE kit.
Christensen, who’s been wearing glasses from a young age, chose his career path because he wanted to know more about visual processing and also about how to help people see better. He is scheduled to graduate in May 2021 and plans to pursue a residency in either primary eye care or ocular disease.