My advice for living in Sheffield? Bring some comfy shoes!
Orthoptics is a relatively small, unique course, and over the past year I have had my fair share of questions regarding my choice of degree: "What is orthoptics?"; "Are you going to become an optician?"; or (more regularly than you would think) "Is that the one with the bones?"
Studying Orthoptics appealed to me as I knew I wanted to work in a hospital and, having worked in an optician’s practice after finishing my A-Levels, I had an interest in ocular anatomy and vision. I knew that I wanted to study something practical that I could use to help people, and I am really excited about my studies and future career in this field.
Orthoptic students at the University of Sheffield have access to all the equipment used in Orthoptic clinics, and an excellent support network of lecturers and tutors. We go on three placements each year to hospitals throughout the UK and Ireland, and this allows you to put into practice everything that you have learnt while at university. Orthoptic students also have the opportunity to join the Orthoptic Society, which is a social group run by students throughout the three years of the course. This is a wonderful way to meet peers in other year groups, who are always more than happy to give you advice and support. The Orthoptic Society also runs the annual 'Eye Ball', a formal event held around Christmas time for staff and students to look back on the past year’s achievements and to celebrate.
Sheffield is an incredibly friendly, diverse city, and I love that there is always something going on that you can get stuck in with. The Students' Union is a hub of activity and a great place to access support whenever you may need it. The student accommodation here in Sheffield is wonderful, and living with my flatmates has been one of the best parts of my university experiences so far.
If you are interested in studying Orthoptics, my main piece of advice would be to contact your local Orthoptic department and organise some work experience. Not only will you see some really interesting cases, but this will give you more certainty as to whether or not this is the career for you.
The University of Sheffield is the perfect mix: a prestigious university with a great reputation and a really fun place to live. A quick word of warning, though: the hills here are not for the faint-hearted, so bring some comfy trainers if you’re going to be joining us!
Weekly online events
Attend an online event when it suits you, all year round, as an alternative to an open day.
Every Wednesday, Sheffield Live sessions cover different aspects of University life. You can also meet your department and learn more about studying your subject.