#113 Optometry Career Close-Up with Ted McElroy, O.D.

In this episode, Lisa and Ted discuss:

  • What optometrists do and how they help people enhance their quality of life. 
  • Essential skills and qualities for those who will have a long and successful optometrist career 
  • Understanding the path from high school to graduate school for optometry.
  • The competitive nature of optometry school and the state-specific regulations aspiring optometrists must navigate. 


Key Takeaways: 

  • Optometrists work with all ages, including infants, to catch any vision issues.
  • Ophthalmology and Optometry have different but equally rigorous requirements. Optometrists work closely with Ophthalmologists for advanced eye care needs.
  • Optometry school is very competitive; strong grades in science courses are important. Consider taking sciences outside of just biology, physics, and chemistry beginning in high school if available.
  • Laws regarding what optometrists can do vary by state, so research where your teen may want to practice. Don’t rely on your student’s advisor to know everything; students should do their own research. 


If you’re planning on doing this, do it because you love it. Optometry is not going to make you rich. Medicine is not going to make you rich. There is never a job they will pay you enough to do. It is about doing it because you care about people, and you want to take care of people.” – Ted McElroy, O.D.


About Ted McElroy, O.D.:

Ted McElroy, OD, founded his practice, Vision Source Tifton, in 1994 in Tifton, GA. In 2004 he served as the Georgia Optometric Association President and in 2016 as President for SECO International. Ted was the recipient of the 1997 GA Optometric Association’s (GOA) Young Optometrist of the Year, the 2005 GOA Optometrist of the Year, the 2009 GOA Bernard Kahn Award Recipient, and the 2022 GOA Georgianne Bearden Excellence in Leadership Award.

Ted enjoys speaking to optometric students on the joys of private practice and assisting aspiring practice owners. He has served on the Speaker’s Bureaus for Alcon, CibaVision, and VSP and is currently on the Speakers Bureau for Vision Source. He is an administrator for Vision Source and serves on the Administrator Advisory Board. Ted is an author published in Invision and Optometric Management, and has also served on the Optometric Management editorial board. He currently serves SECO International as the Chair for the MedPRO 360 committee, the Business Education Program of SECO International. Ted co-hosts the Eyecode Media Podcast with Drs. Chris Wolfe and Aaron Werner.


Episode References:


Get Lisa’s Free on-demand video: How-to guide for your teen to choose the right major, college, & career…(without painting themselves into a corner, missing crucial deadlines, or risking choices you both regret). 



Connect with Ted:

Website: https://visionsource-tiftonfamilyeyecare.com/ 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/tedmcelroyod/ 


Connect with Lisa:

Website: https://www.flourishcoachingco.com/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@flourishcoachingco

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/flourishcoachingco/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/flourish-coaching-co

Access the episode transcript here