In this video interview, we sat down with Emilie Seitz, and talk best ways optometry students can network.
Emilie Seitz (@eyeseitz), third-year optometry student at Pennsylvania College of Optometry, shares some advice on how to properly network as optometry students, based upon her own experience.
Seitz first realized the importance of networking at the Student Optometric Leadership Network
, a private-practice conference for the leaders of every college of optometry. “We get together once a year and talk about issues of private practice, things that we want to grow towards, our goals, and how to achieve them,” she explains.
“Some of the leaders are right there all in one place and it’s such a great experience to be able to talk to them and get to know them on a more intimate level.”
With a billion active users, Instagram is also a great potential tool for those seeking to expand and develop their network, and Seitz has proven herself particularly adept at doing so on this platform, as is evident to anyone who is familiar with her own Instagram account, @eyeseitz.
“I think it was really about telling my story,” she explains when asked for the secret of her social media success. “I try not to post about things that everyone else will. I try to post about my own story, my own experiences. And that is what’s interesting in a networking experience. That is what’s interesting to other people.”
For students who feel that “everything’s been done” in the area of social-media networking and that there’s no room for them, Seitz believes that there’s still lots of room to grow.
She compares the optometry industry to the fitness industry, which has a much greater social-media saturation. “I don’t think we can say we have enough leaders leading social media in optometry.” Achieving more visibility on social media is the best way we can build patients’ knowledge base, which is vital to the continued success of optometry as an industry. “If our patients aren’t coming every other year for their eye exams, then we’re not talking about it enough.”
Check out this video on why it's important to get involved while you're still in school!