Crystal P., 20 – FUNDED

Crystal P. is currently focused on completing her bachelor’s degree in Health Science at Stephen F. Austin State University and to continue to be involved on campus while applying to optometry school. The 1,000 Dreams Fund Scholarship winner is also following her own advice of maximizing her time as an undergrad student to make connections and take on leadership roles.

What is your professional dream?

My dream is to establish a career as an optometrist to form positive interactions with patients. It is so fascinating to see the multiple roles that an optometrist plays, including being a team leader in the office as well as their role in improving the lives and vision of their patients.

How will you use the 1,000 Dreams Scholarship?

I will use the scholarship to cover the registration costs of the Optometry Admissions Test (OAT) and to purchase study materials to prepare for the test.

How is this scholarship helping you get closer to your dream?

Successfully taking the OAT is a big part of the optometry application process. With the help of this scholarship, I am able to worry less about the costs and better prepare for the OAT.

What advice do you have for other young women who are wanting to pursue their dreams?

In college, there are so many opportunities to grow professionally and personally! Take advantage of your time as a student to explore new interests, make new connections, and take on leadership roles!

Also, take time for yourself to reflect on your progress towards your dreams! I find it really helpful to jot down quotes, goals, and ideas that keep me motivated to continue to follow my dreams!

​Have you had any setbacks? How did you move past them?

I definitely had an emotional and financial setback when my dad got arrested at the end of last year. It was tough finishing out the semester not knowing what would come next for my family and me. However, I was motivated to finish my semester strong to encourage my younger siblings to do the same. Since then, I feel like the situation has allowed me to find a stronger sense of purpose to pursue my goals.

What’s next for you? What is your next goal?

I am currently completing my internship as an optometric technician and working on preparing my application for optometry school. My next goal before I graduate from SFASU is definitely to be accepted into an optometry school in Texas!