Second year Optometry student, Laura Douds has completed a six week placement with Specsavers in Belfast’s Victoria Square as part of her three year Optometry degree at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge.

Laura from Saintfield is amongst 550 optometry students from across the UK who were learning the ropes of optometry practice ahead of their final year at university. Following graduation Laura will undertake a pre-registration year based at an optician before becoming fully qualified.

Store support

Sinead Donnelly, ophthalmic director at Specsavers Victoria Square said the store team is delighted to support the undergraduate study programme.

‘Our placement programme is structured to provide students with a comprehensive insight into optometry practice and includes a workbook and USB stick which provides a huge amount of information enabling students to keep detailed notes of what they have learned which they can refer to throughout the rest of their studies.

Excellent reputation

‘The scheme which is now in its fifth year aims to provide excellent and invaluable experience and has an excellent reputation among university students. From the feedback we get, it’s not just that it is well-structured, it’s also because of the personal nature of the relationship between the student and the store team. Students tell us that they feel they are treated as individuals – and this makes a real difference to them.

‘Selected students attend a two hour development session at their university before they start and we focus on team development and communications skills to help students make the best use of the placement and make a good start to their career in optometry.’

All Belfast Victoria Square store information