The Australasian College of Optical Dispensing (ACOD) recognised the combined achievements of the class of 2019 and 2020 at a graduation evening held at Luna Park, Sydney. The event, made possible by the easing of COVID restrictions, celebrated student completion of the Optical Dispensing Certificate IV.
James Gibbins, ACOD Director, welcomed the graduates to the world of qualified optical dispensers and dispensing opticians and spoke of their admirable commitment to their studies and professional goals.
We must ensure that our learning journey is a lifelong one, to keep us up to date with the constant evolution of the fantastic and ever-increasing range of products and services that are at our disposable to better serve those who need us
Optical designer, Jonathan Hennessy Sceats, acknowledged the significant role of ACOD in providing optical dispensers with a profession for life. Addressing the graduates he said, “you can now go anywhere you want to go, and do wonderful things. What you, as dispensers do, is make the optometrists successful and when you do that you create a lot of joy for the patient. This is really important.”
As guest of honour, Steve O’Leary, Director of Products and Dispensing Advancement at Specsavers, recognised the new graduates as a “vital link in the eye care chain” which will play a “critically important role in the community for decades to come.”
Reflecting on his 36 years of experience in the optical industry, Mr O’Leary also spoke of the future of eye care and the importance of embracing new technology to enhance skills.
“We must ensure that our learning journey is a lifelong one, to keep us up to date with the constant evolution of the fantastic and ever-increasing range of products and services that are at our disposable to better serve those who need us,” he said.
On the night, awards were presented to the following students for their academic achievements:
First in course: Sheree Rosser,
Second in course: Dominique Jorgensen, and
Third in course: Rayleen Tamblyn.
First in course: Lara Markham,
Second in course: Teresa Sze, and
Third in course: Rebecca Ellis.
The Special Achievement Award, which recognises students who, under the most stressful of personal circumstances, go on to complete their course through their own sheer determination, their strength of character and extraordinary commitment to their professional goals, was presented to Rebecca Andrews.
“Despite severe disruptions, Rebecca maintained her study when possible, she attended her workshops in Sydney, and she always she had a friendly smile and never expressed anything but appreciation and a super positive attitude,” said Mr Gibbins.
The event concluded with a speech from student Bonnie Eason and further acknowledgement of the teaching staff and industry support.