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2016 Convocation Ceremony Honors Achievement

Southern College of Optometry's 2016 Convocation ceremony recognized the achievements of students, alumni, faculty, and staff with several awards and recognition presented. Of special note, the Class of 2020 gathered for its official white coat group portrait.

 

Receiving SCO's Lifetime Achievement Award - the highest honor bestowed by the college - was Joel Zaba, OD '69, FAAO. Dr. Zaba was honored for his extensive research, publications, and efforts to help establish the connections between learning and vision.

 

Members of SCO's Class of 1966 were also recognized as they returned for their 50-year reunion during Fall Homecoming and Continuing Education Weekend. Each attendee was presented a 50-year commemorative diploma.

 

Scholarships and other awards were presented to attendees from throughout the SCO campus community. Many of SCO's student awards and scholarships were made possible by the generosity of the college's alumni and friends who support the Annual Campaign and Endowed Scholarship funds.

 

Among those recognized:

Military Service Scholarships

  • Nathan Dederman, '18, Stephen Tipton, '17, Jessica Ward, '18

Basic Science and Clinical Awards

  • 1ST YEAR BASIC SCIENCE AWARDS: Brian Chado ’19, Jae DeBerry ’19, Blair Flint ’19, Jed Harrison ’19, Courtney Hegener ’19, Jon Hoaglund ’19, Jessica Jankiewicz ’19, Larissa Krenk ’19, Brittany Smith ’19, Kelly Trapp ’19
  • 1ST YEAR CLINICAL SCIENCE AWARDS: Christianne Belair ’19, Sydney Cooper ’19, Jae DeBerry ’19, Victoria Howard ’19, Jessica Jankiewicz ’19, Kelly Reed ’19, Nick Risbrudt ’19, Brittany Smith ’19, Jennifer Stewart ’19, Kelsey Teneycke ’19
  • 2ND YEAR BASIC SCIENCE AWARDS: Ethan Adkins ’18, Kristen Davis ’18, Elizabeth Fahy ’18, Kendra Fink ’18, AJ McCleary ’18, Corey Ommen ’18, Luke Robin ’18, Slater Smith ’18, Alex Soliz ’18, Kelsey White ’18
  • 2ND YEAR CLINICAL SCIENCE AWARDS: Melinda Dang ’18, Marcus Daniel ’18, Kendra Fink ’18, Danny Garcia ’18, Morgan Kickliter ’18, Dalton Miller ’18, Austin Pace ’18, Luke Robin ’18, Alex Soliz ’18, Victoria Stewart ’18
  • 3RD YEAR CLINICAL SKILLS AWARDS: Kevin Ader ’17, Emily Eisenhower ’17, David Haba ’17, Derek Hennig ’17, Erin Keim ’17, Matt Page ’17, Clinton Prestwich ’17, Bradley Richlin ’17, Kayla Smith ’17, Sandy Trybus ’17

Class Scholarships

The following Endowed Class Scholarships recognized outstanding leadership and professionalism by members of the Classes of 2017, 2018 and 2019.

  • CLASSES OF ’54, ’56, ’59 SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Chelci Schade ’18
  • CLASSES OF ’60, ’61, ’63 SCHOLARSHIP ($1,500): Blair Flint ’19
  • CLASSES OF ’64, ’65, ’66 SCHOLARSHIP ($1,500): Liz Perch ’18
  • CLASSES OF ’67, ’68, ’69 SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Lauren Rigsby ’17, Shay Sechler ’17
  • CLASSES OF ’70, ’71, ’74 SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Taylor Chesnut ’17, Lauren Sharp ’17
  • CLASS OF 1977 SCHOLARSHIP ($3,000): Shelby Rogers ’18
  • CLASS OF 1978 SCHOLARSHIP ($2,000): Ethan Adkins ’18
  • CLASS OF 1984 SCHOLARSHIP ($1,500): Ben Taylor ’19
  • CLASS OF 1997 JIMMY SHERIDAN MEMORIAL AWARD ($1,000): Brad Schuster ’18
  • CLASS OF 2001 SCOTT WHITAKER MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Kalah Burchfield ‘18

Alumni and Friends Scholarships

SCO alumni and friends generously support and recognize academic accomplishments and leadership within the student body. As such, the following endowed scholarships and awards have been established in support of SCO students.

  • ROSEMORE FAMILY ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($2,000): Joe Johnson ’18, Andrew Smith ’17,Sara Petska ’17
  • NATIONAL BOARD OF EXAMINERS IN OPTOMETRY AWARD, PART I ($1,000): Kevin Rice ’17, Celia Baker ’17
  • MAULDIN FAMILY SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Matt Walker ’17
  • ALUMNI COUNCIL ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Sandy Trybus ’17
  • DR. ALLAN AND MRS. SUSAN BARKER ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($1,500): Shanelle Jenkins ’18
  • DR. FREDDY WILFRED CHANG ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Shalon Rothstein ’17
  • W. DAVID SULLINS ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP FOR LEADERSHIP ($1,000): Erick Henderson ’17
  • WAYNE W. PYEATT ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($2,000): Zach Baumfalk ’17
  • PEGGY REMKE MEMORIAL ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($2,000): Patrick Jones ’17
  • DR. JOHN A. GAZAWAY ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Tyler Lefeber ’17
  • KANSAS ALUMNI ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP  ($1,000): Alyssa Louia ’18
  • FRED FARIAS, III, OD ’87, FAAO ENDOWED AWARD ($1,000): Ibrahim Qattan ’17
  • JERRY L. CLAY ENDOWED AWARD ($1,000): Alex Soliz ’18
  • DRS. BERGER & MOSCOW FAMILY ENDOWED SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Tessa Wellsandt ’18
  • DON E. WILLIAMSON MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP ($3,000): Roxanne Senechal ’17
  • DR. STANLEY M. DICKERSON ENDOWED LEADERSHIP AWARD ($1,000): Michelle Moscow ’17
  • JAMES AND EDNA DUNCAN AWARD ($500): Haley Kincannon ’18
  • VINCENT SALIERNO SCHOLARSHIP ($2,000): Sarah Vrotsos ’17

State and Professional Associations

  • GEORGIA OPTOMETRIC ASSOCIATION SCHOLARSHIP ($1,500): Melinda Dang ’18
  •  KENTUCKY OPTOMETRIC ASSOCIATION SCHOLARSHIPS ($1,000): Caroline Seger ’19, Sarai Wethington ’19
  • MISSISSIPPI OPTOMETRIC ASSOCIATION, HONORING DR. WILLIAM E. COCHRAN ($1,000): Tindall Morrison ’17
  • TENNESSEE ASSOCIATION OF OPTOMETRIC PHYSICIANS SCHOLARSHIP  ($1,000): Emily Eisenhower ’17
  • AUXILIARY TO THE ARKANSAS OPTOMETRIC ASSOCIATION ($1,000): AJ Hickman ’18
  • ARKANSAS OPTOMETRIC ASSOCIATION ($1,500) DR. WILLIAM H. TOWNSEND MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP:  Mary Price ’19

Corporate Partners and Ophthalmic Industry

  • REVIEW OF OPTOMETRY AND THE RICK BAY FOUNDATION FOR EXCELLENCE IN EYECARE EDUCATION AWARD ($500): Derek Hennig ’17
  • J. PAT CUMMINGS SCHOLARSHIP ($1,000): Mary Nethaway ’18
  • VISION SERVICE PLAN SCHOLARSHIPS ($4,000): Tyler Boone ’17, Ben Roach ’17
  • OCULAR INSTRUMENTS AWARD (Product Certificate), Meagan Williams ’17, Ryan Piche ’18, Brittany Glatting ’19
  • WELCH ALLYN CO. AWARD (Panoptic Ophthalmoscope and Lithium Icon Handle): Rachel Sossaman ’18
  • HEINE USA AWARD (Hand-held Slit Lamp): Whitney Watson ’17
  • KEELER INSTRUMENTS AWARD (Streak Retinoscope and Mini Charger): Jordan Hamric ’17

2015-16 Faculty of the Year

CLASS OF 2017

  • Didactic: Chris Borgman, OD
  • Clinic: Patricia Cisarik, OD, PHD

Class of 2018

  • Didactic: Scott Ensor, OD
  • Clinic: Jennifer Sanderson, OD

CLASS OF 2019

  • Didactic: John Mark Jackson, OD, MS
  • Clinic: Amanda Tompkins, OD

BSK TEACHER OF THE YEAR AWARDS

  • Didactic: Jennifer Snyder, OD
  • Clinic: Scott Ensor, OD

Other Awards

  • Drs. Charlene and Fred Burnett Outstanding Faculty Award: Wil McGriff, OD
  • President's Recognition Award, Faculty: Carrie Lebowitz, OD
  • President's Recognition Award, Staff: Gail Killingsworth, OD

Photos from the event will be shared to SCO's photo galleries.

 

 

 

 

Posted by Jim Hollifield at Wednesday, September 21, 2016 | 0 comments

White Coat Ceremony Welcomes Class of 2020

Southern College of Optometry formally welcomed the Class of 2020 into the profession of optometry with a white coat ceremony on Monday, August 29. More than 500 family, friends, and faculty members were on hand to witness each student receive his or her white coat (generously provided by Marchon) and sign SCO's honor code.

Officiating were Dr. Lewis Reich, SCO President, Dr. J. Bart Campbell, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. James Venable, Vice President for Clinical Programs, Joe Hauser, Vice President for Student Services, and Mary Nethaway Chase, '18, Student Government Association President.

The Class of 2020 includes 136 students who were selected from 877 applicants. The class recorded an average grade point average of 3.53 and an average 328 score on the Optometry Admissions Test (OAT). Their addition to the SCO student body brings SCO's number of full-time students to 531, the most since 1982.

During the ceremony, 33 students were recognized for receiving scholarships, including:

  • Christy Alfano, of Orlando, Florida, who received the Stern-Maronek Family Endowed Scholarship
  • A.J. Barbiero, of Salt Lake City, Utah, who received the Presidential Endowed Scholarship
  • Leslie Cline, of Bowling Green, Kentucky, who received the Dr. Cheryl Johnson Memorial Endowed Scholarship
  • Jordan Dravitzki, of Stromsburg, Nebraska, who received the Board of Trustees - Thomas Gulley Scholarship
  • Jared Freeman, of Plantation, Florida, who received the Dean's Endowed Scholarship
  • Anna Fuller, of Ruston, Louisiana, who received the New Orleans Contact Lens Society Endowed Scholarship
  • Torrie Garner, of Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, who received the Board of Trustees - Donna Abney Scholarship
  • Kelci Glover, of Wichita, Kansas, who received the Presidential Endowed Scholarship
  • Katie Hardy, of Sedalia, Missouri, who received the Dr. William R. Jackson, Jr. Memorial Endowed Scholarship
  • Alyssa Invergo, of Peotone, Illinois, who received the Board of Trustees - Linda Johnson Scholarship
  • Cori Jones, of Cheney, Kansas, who received the Dean's Endowed Scholarship
  • Kate Keefer, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, who received the Alston & Byrd Endowed Scholarship
  • Callie Mashburn, of Sweetwater, Tennessee, who received the Sullins Family Endowed Scholarship
  • Destiny McDuffie, of Winterville, North Carolina, who received the SCO Alumni Endowed Scholarship
  • Matt Meredith, of Louisville, Kentucky, Dr. Ramona Porter Clifton Endowed Scholarship
  • Alison Moore, of Memphis, Tennessee, who received the Drs. Charlene & Fred Burnett Endowed Scholarship
  • Madelyn Mullally, of Le Mars, Iowa, who received the Covington/Andreas Endowed Scholarship
  • Erin Neal, of Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania, who received the Dr. Vaughn Parfitt Endowed Scholarship
  • Rachel Newland, of Parsons, Kansas, who received the Drs. Helen and Christopher King Endowed Scholarship
  • Jhaleil Phillips, of McDonough, Georgia, who received the Board of Trustees - Linda Johnson Scholarship
  • Melissa Pongratz, of Fort Worth, Texas, who received the Board of Trustees - Thomas Gulley Scholarship
  • Brian Post, of Tallahassee, Florida, who received the Dr. William E. Cochran Endowed Scholarship
  • Kristen Purdy, of Solon, Iowa, who received the Dean's Endowed Scholarship
  • Stephanie Ross, of Nokomis, Florida, who received the Dr. Earl Lusk Endowed Scholarship
  • Michaela Sasse, of Gaylord, Kansas, who received the Board of Trustees - Martha Morrow Scholarship
  • Emily Scully, of Batavia, Illinois, who received the SCO Alumni Endowed Scholarship
  • Trevor Shealy, of Cordele, Georgia, who received the Dr. L. Wayne Brown Memorial Endowed Scholarship
  • Jacob Smith, of Athens, Alabama, who received the Dean's Endowed Scholarship
  • Katie Stuckey, of Ruston, Louisiana, who received the Dr. Camille Chiasson Endowed Scholarship
  • Al'Tiana Watson, of Savannah, Georgia, who received the Dr. Joel T. Byars Endowed Scholarship
  • Jake Weber, of Milford, Nebraska, who received the Presidential Endowed Scholarship
  • Rachel Werner, of Maple Valley, Washington, who received the Precisions Endowed Scholarship
  • Annie Wester, of Cleghorn, Iowa, who received the Presidential Endowed Scholarship.

Scholarship recipients:  Destiny McDuffie, Brian Post, A.J. Barbiero Alison Moore, Kate Keefer, Jhaleil Phillips, Trevor Shealy Rachel Newland, Madelyn Mullally, Jared Freedman Cori Jones, Al’Tiana Watson, Katie Hardy
Scholarship recipients: 
Destiny McDuffie, Brian Post, A.J. Barbiero
Alison Moore, Kate Keefer, Jhaleil Phillips, Trevor Shealy
Rachel Newland, Madelyn Mullally, Jared Freedman
Cori Jones, Al’Tiana Watson, Katie Hard
y


Scholarship recipients: Jacob Smith, Jake Weber, Katie Stuckey Callie Mashburn, Melissa Pongratz, Michaela Sasse, Emily Scully Kelci Glover, Erin Neal, Alyssa Invergo, Kristen Purdy
Scholarship recipients:
Jacob Smith, Jake Weber, Katie Stuckey
Callie Mashburn, Melissa Pongratz, Michaela Sasse, Emily Scully
Kelci Glover, Erin Neal, Alyssa Invergo, Kristen Purdy

 

Scholarship recipients: Matt Meredith, Torrie Garner, Jordan Dravitzki Annie Wester, Leslie Cline, Stephanie Ross, Christy Alfano Rachel Werner, Anna Fuller
Scholarship recipients:
Matt Meredith, Torrie Garner, Jordan Dravitzki
Annie Wester, Leslie Cline, Stephanie Ross, Christy Alfano
Rachel Werner, Anna Fuller

 

A video recording of the ceremony may be viewed via SCO's YouTube channel:

Photo gallery coverage of the ceremony and post-reception will also be uploaded and shared soon.

at Wednesday, August 31, 2016 | 0 comments

Reed Elected to AOA Board

SCO Board of Trustees Chair Steven T. Reed, OD '95, of Magee, Mississippi, was recently elected to the American Optometric Association (AOA) Board of Trustees. The election took place at the AOA's annual meeting in Boston.

"We are honored to have a man with Dr. Reed's commitment and outstanding service to the profession of optometry as a member of the Board," said Dr. Greg Loose, Mississippi Optometric Association (MOA) president. "He has a passion for the profession of optometry but beyond that, he has a passion to make a difference in the lives of others."

As a community and professional leader he is a past president of the MOA, the Southwest Optometric Society, the Magee Chamber of Commerce, and the Magee Lion's Club. He is also Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Southern College of Optometry and Mississippi Trustee to the SECO International Board.  In 2010, he was named Mississippi's Optometrist of the Year.

For nearly 20 years, Dr. Reed has helped organize eye screenings at Magee Elementary and Magee Middle School. He also helped coordinate the first annual Glaucoma Awareness Day in Magee and the first annual Mac McCarty Lions Club Golf Tournament to raise funds for glasses and eye care services for the underserved of Simpson County.

Dr. Reed graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Southern Mississippi with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry and Magna Cum Laude from Southern College of Optometry as a Doctor of Optometry.  

He and his wife Kendra are active members of Goodwater Baptist Church where he serves as deacon. Dr. Reed has two children, Calder and Emily.

 

Posted by Jim Hollifield at Thursday, July 28, 2016 | 0 comments

Elkins Named Director of Academic Programs

Dr. Linday Elkins, Southern College of Optometry Assistant Professor, was recently named the college's Director of Academic Programs.

The Director of Academic Programs is responsible for ensuring the efficient and effective implementation of the college's academic programs, with emphasis on the didactic and laboratory components of SCO's curriculum.

In her new role, Dr. Elkins reports to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and works closely with The Eye Center's Chief of Staff and the Faculty Curriculum Committee.

A 2007 SCO graduate, Dr. Elkins has served as the college's Coordinator of School Screenings. She was appointed to the faculty in 2008 and is a recipient of SCO's Young Alumni Award.
Posted by Jim Hollifield at Thursday, June 9, 2016 | 0 comments

Reich Inaugurated as SCO President

Lewis Reich, OD, PhD, was formally inaugurated as the seventh president to lead Southern College of Optometry during a ceremony held on Friday, May 13, 2016 at the institution's midtown Memphis campus.

The SCO community welcomed more than 300 visitors, including representatives from other optometry colleges, local institutions of higher learning, representatives of the ophthalmic industry, and other invited guests. 

In his introduction, SCO Board of Trustees Chair Steven Reed, OD '95, congratulated Dr. Reich on earning the trust and respect of SCO's Board during nine months that Dr. Reich served as interim president before officially being named by the board to the position in a permanent capacity.

A number of representatives delivered greetings from their respective constituencies, including the local and academic communities, alumni, students, family, and faculty/staff. In her remarks representing faculty/staff, Dr. Aaron Kerr, Faculty Chair, announced that more than $27,000 had been raised to create a new scholarship in Dr. Reich's honor, with approximately $23,000 donated by faculty members to support the effort.

In his inaugural address, Dr. Reich outlined three top priorities for the college's future:

  • Making SCO a top school of choice for the best qualified students,
  • Ensuring good stewardship of the college's financial resources to help control student expenditures, particularly in light of increasing student debt at the undergraduate level, and
  • Working to enhance SCO's reputation within Memphis and the newly formed Memphis Medical District Collaborative effort.

The ceremony concluded with SCO President Emeritus Billy Cochran, OD '68, leading the optometric oath for the optometrists in attendance. 

Following the ceremony, a luncheon was held on campus with seven food trucks and live entertainment selected to offer guests a sampling of food and music popular in Memphis. A reception in Dr. Reich's honor was also held the evening prior as part of the inaugural festivities.

To read more about Dr. Reich's background and the event, a copy of the inaugural program may be read online here.

Click here to view our Inauguration photo galleries on Flickr. 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Jim Hollifield at Wednesday, May 18, 2016 | 0 comments