Congratulations to Dr. Sandra Fortenberry of TSO Bandera for being awarded the AOA Young Optometrist of the Year!
Sandra Fortenberry, O.D., has worked for students almost her entire life. She is one of the main reasons a new optometry school will successfully graduate its first class this year. She has become a vital leader in optometry.
Her first foray into student career development occurred while in optometry school at the University of Houston College of Optometry (UHCO), when she was a student teacher for the “bridging” program called TEXOCOP, the Texas Optometry Career Opportunities Program. She received clinical letters of excellence from various teachers at UHCO while working as a teaching assistant and faculty assistant. She worked as an extern and completed a residency in various subspecialties of optometry, including low vision.
Following her graduation from UHCO in 2007, she moved into teaching as a clinical attending, instructor and assistant professor. She was then recruited for the neophyte optometry school in San Antonio at the University of the Incarnate Word, which later became the Rosenberg School of Optometry (RSO). After enduring a challenging period during the start‐up phase of the program, she helped usher in a partnership with organized optometry, with industry and with faculty.
She is a tireless advocate for RSO. As director of Continuing Education & Professional Relations, she has represented the optometry school at functions all around the country, raising money for students and programs. She is committed to increasing student membership and involvement throughout the Texas Optometric Association (TOA) and AOA. In fact, her involvement with students resulted in RSO Dean Andrew Buzzelli, O.D., committing to 100 percent student membership in both the TOA and AOA. Their next job is to do the same with faculty.