A staff member from the Launceston store has won four out of five awards available to students studying for the finals of their contact lens optician qualification.
Hayley Butler won prizes for gaining the highest mark in the practical and theory examinations, the highest pass in the combined theory and practical exams and a prize for the highest marks in certain sections of the practical tests. She won the Sauflon Award for the highest mark in the theory tests in 2013 and was awarded the other prizes in 2014.
Contact lens optician
Hayley has worked at the store for seven and a half years and started as an optical assistant before training as a dispensing optician. She then decided to extend her skills and take the qualification to be a contact lens optician with the Association of British Dispensing Opticians College (ABDO).
She says: ‘It feels amazing to have been rewarded with three prizes this year for my exam results. I worked so hard in the lead up to the exams; I was studying after work until 11pm most nights. There was so much to learn that it felt like I would never take it all in. I was just so desperate to pass that I never considered that I might get the highest marks, especially considering that the first time pass rate is so low. I’m really proud of what I have achieved.’
Hayley’s studies were sponsored by the store and the directors supported her progress by giving her clinic time to practice when she needed it. ‘My work colleagues were so supportive and I couldn’t have passed without them. All the staff were happy to be guinea pigs for me and would even stay late after work to let me practice new techniques on them,’ says Hayley.
Store director Julia Peggs says: ‘Hayley is a fantastic member of our small team in Specsavers Launceston, these awards are well deserved for her hard work and commitment, we are all very proud of her.’
Hayley is currently on maternity leave after having her first child and plans to return to the store next year.
• Sauflon Award for the highest aggregate mark in theory examinations (2013)
• The Bailey Prize for the highest full pass in theory and practical examinations (2014)
• The CIBA Vision/ Alcon Prize for Excellence for the highest mark in a practical examination (2014)
• The Association of Contact Lens Manufacturers Prize for the highest mark in sections 2,3 and 4 in the practical examination (2014).