You would think that with finals right around the corner and the last two weeks being the busiest we’ve had so far, I would be stuck inside 24/7, and honestly, most of the time I was. But somehow I was also able to explore the city and try out a few new things. And not the really touristy stuff that everyone tells you to do right away, like see the Bean and walk the Magnificent Mile. I finally got to see a bit of local Chicago.
First up was going out for sushi. Now I’ve eaten sushi before and enjoy it as much as the average person would, but by no means would I consider myself a connoisseur. Along with around 10 friends, I headed to a joint in Lincoln Park called Sushi Para II where I was about to be shocked and amazed. The food was incredible! It was all-you-can-eat, where you ordered whichever rolls or sushi your party desired and they brought them out in fantastic arrays and designs. The only thing you have to be careful about is over-ordering, because if your eyes are larger than your stomach they charge you for the leftovers. It was hands-down the best sushi I’ve ever had. Now I can’t say I eat sushi often, so there may not be much to compare it to, but hey, I’d definitely go back. It also didn’t hurt that the place was BYOB with no corking fee!
Exceptional grades aren’t the only thing I’ve been striving for this past week. I also plan on winning first place in the Amazing Race. “But Scott, that’s a primetime TV show and you have no chance of ever being featured, how could you possibly win it all?!” Unfortunately, I’m well aware that I will never be on TV, unless my infomercial ideas finally find a backer, but that’s a topic for another blog. What I’m talking about now is ICO’s Amazing Race. This is a program put on by the school’s own very own fitness guru and coordinator, Sarah Engle. The premise is that students pair up in teams of two and hit the gym. The exercises done are converted to miles that we then use to travel the world. Different exercises are worth different points–for example, running one mile equals 500 map miles, while one mile on the stationary bike is 150 map miles. As we gain miles, we reach various destinations around the world until we finally reach Chicago again–52,800 miles later. The best part is that you can see your progress on the large map outside the gym; all you have to do is move your game piece the correct number of miles!
Ahhh, the holidays! It’s the perfect time to relax with family, eat good food, and… study?! Yep, that’s right.
We just returned on Monday from a two-week break, and although those two weeks were a much-needed break from endless exams, we are still right in the middle of winter quarter. Even though we weren’t in class for a while, the schedule doesn’t skip a beat. We’ve got two exams this week, not to mention our Optometry Lab practical looming close in the distance. This practical will encompass all the entrance testing techniques we’ve learned so far this year, and it’s timed! So although I enjoyed my break as much as possible, I did try and set aside some time here and there for a bit of studying and some necessary practice with my entrance testing equipment.
View from the top of the Residential Complex
I had a friend ask me the other day why I would want to write this blog. I’ve had no previous experience blogging, English was never my strongest subject, and why add more to my ever-growing work load? Although he had some valid points, they never crossed my mind when I signed up to do this.
I came to ICO with almost zero experience with optometry and no idea of what lie ahead in school. I put countless hours into researching the field, trying to glimpse what my path forward would look like, but all I found were stats and figures. Few things are difficult to find on the World Wide Web, but a real-life representation of an optometry student is definitely one of them. You can read all the statistics in the world about how great a career it is or how many job openings there will be in five years, yet neither of these will tell you what being a student here is truly like. I hope that by sharing my stories and experiences here at ICO, others can grasp a unique insight into the life of an optometry student and what it is that we do.