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Optometry Student Interns | Long Island Eye Doctor

Joel Kestenbaum, OD

It has been an amazing journey practicing optometry for 30 years.  All of the courses I took in optometry school have been put to

good use in some fashion or another.  Academics though, are just that… academics.  As most people learn over the years, with experience comes wisdom.

So how have I become wiser over the years?  The answer is simple.  I have aligned myself with students who are either undergrads considering optometry school or are presently optometry students.  Even after 30 years of practice, these students have influenced the way I approach patients.  First of all, if you are hiring these students, they make absolutely the best employees.  They are enthusiastic about learning what you can show and teach them, they absorb information like sponges, and never seem to tire as long as they are being stimulated with a variety of patient encounters.  The benefit to me and my practice is that the

y ask questions that make me think about areas that have been in the back of my brain for years, are willing to help in any way possible, and are willing to take on the duties of a technician thereby enabling my associate and I to see more patients.  An additional benefit is that our patients are very impressed with the fact that my associate and I “teach” so they see us as experts.  This is a value added experience and thus a value added service to our patients.

In my practice, the students are exposed to both every aspect of clinical care in our virtually paperless office and to the business side of optometry.  They observe the various front desk duties, they observe and often assist in patient pre-testing, they shadow in the exam room, follow the patient to the dispensary, assist patients in choosing eyewear, assist in the lab to fabricate the eyewear, call patients to notify that the eyewear is completed and observe the dispensing.  They observe me or my staff in the business office, while we notify or discuss issues with patients, delegate responsibilities to other valuable employees, ordering contact lenses, interpreting visual fields, GDX or Retinal Photos, and get a sense of what it really takes to run a successful optometric practice.

I am proud to believe that I have been a positive influence on young people considering optometry as a profession.  I am proud of the fact that I actually remember how to answer most of the questions these students can tender.  I am proud of the fact that they seem to respect my opinions related to the profession.  I am proud to offer my expertise to young minds that are eager for knowledge.  I am truly wiser for it.

For those students that may have an interest in interning with me, please go to my website for our telephone number and give me a call.  I look forward to it.

The website URL is

Joel Kestenbaum, OD

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