AFOS Local Liaisons
Jason Christman, Army, 3-year HPSP
AFOS Student exists to create an efficient and instructive avenue for optometry students into Armed Forces Optometry, with online resources, better access to recruiters, and more information about the benefits of life as an Armed Forces Optometrist.
Join our Facebook page, read through this site, learn from the reports from new ODs out in the field, current Health Professions Scholarship students, and tips on how to make the most of your student membership with AFOS and your time as a student with your assigned branch.
New England College of Optometry
Ting Zhang, Email
I am in the class of 2015 at the New England College of Optometry (NECO). I grew up in Pueblo, Colorado, and now call Colorado Springs, home of 2 Air Force bases and the Air Force Academy, home. A couple of really close friends have enlisted in the Air Force and have fought in the Iraq war. Therefore, it was an obvious choice for me to also seek out HPSP opportunities through the Air Force. I am excited for the adventures that armed forces optometry will bring, and I am eager to share my experiences so far in the HPSP and at NECO. Feel free to contact me with any questions about optometry school and HPSP scholarships!
Northeastern State University Oklahoma College of Optometry
Jane Kosin, Email
Molly Clark, Air Force, 2-year HPSP
I am Molly Clark. I grew up just outside of Atlanta, GA, and I am now in my 4th year at UABSO in Birmingham, AL. My love of traveling, desire to provide patients with the latest and greatest comprehensive care, and my desire to do something greater than myself in life made the military an easy decision for me! Being the first person anywhere in my family to enter the military, I was full of questions. However, this summer I completed a summer externship on an Air Force base, and I absolutely loved it! I will be glad to share any of my experiences of practicing optometry in the military with anyone.
The Ohio State Universiy University College of Optometry
Hi! My name is Michelle Massie, and I am a third year at the Ohio State University College of Optometry, where I am involved in FCO, BSK, and NOSA. My family has been a part of the military community for over 30 years, and we have had the opportunity to travel to and live in some exciting places, as well as meet many amazing friends. I am excited to continue to be a part of this supportive community and to be able to serve as an active duty optometrist upon graduation in 2015. I am happy to be a part of AFOS because I was fortunate to have multiple active duty Air Force optometrists who were a part of the HPSP program as mentors. I am excited to help others explore this career path to see if it is right for them and answer any questions.
Illinois College of Optometry
My goal is to provide as much information as possible to my classmates regarding AFOS and the various scholarships/work available. As well as becoming an easy source of communication between our school and the AFOS organization. If I can provide you with any other information, please let me know. I look forward to working with you this coming year.
Jason Christman, Army, 3 year HPSP
3rd year student at University of Houston College of Optometry (UHCO). Happy for the opportunity to be a part of the United States Military. I enjoy challenges and spend my time running, hiking, cycling, swimming, and taking care of my wife and children. I love the science of what we do as optometrists and I look forward to using the best care practices and innovation to help those I'm asked to serve.
Benjamin D. Snyder, Air Force, 2-year HPSP
I am a third-year IUSO student from Clarion, Pennsylvania. I am a member of BSK, co-author of a recently published ARMD paper (IOVS), and associate instructor in 2nd year ophthalmic optics. My late grandfather was an Army man, as was my older brother, and I am honored and proud to serve my country as a soldier and eye care professional. If you might be interested in experiencing full-scope military optometry and its myriad benefits, ask me about the HPSP. All questions are welcome.
Craig Jensen, Air Force, 2-year HPSP
“Hello, my name is Craig Jensen. I was born and raised in Reno, NV area. I moved here from Southern Utah with my wife and little daughter. I met my wife in her native Brazil where I was also living for a several-year period prior to Optometry school. My brother is currently also in the Air Force, serving as a pilot. My father and Grandfather were both HPSP recipients and I am honored to be numbered with them. I am proud to serve our country as well serve my colleagues at my school. Please don’t hesitate to contact me should you need any assistance regarding Optometry, Puerto Rico, HPSP or anything else.”
Mark J Debano Jr., Navy, 4-year HPSP
“Hello, my name is ENS Mark Debano Jr. I'm a third year optometry student at Michigan College of Optometry on a four-year HPSP scholarship through the Navy. As an optometrist in the Navy I will be fulfilling my dream of being a doctor while satisfying the desire I've always had to serve my country. As the new AFOS liaison at MCO, I plan to help facilitate communications between the local optometry students involved with the armed forces and the AFOS. Please feel free to contact me with any questions!”
2LT John Koehler
I grew up in Washington, Iowa . I attended Wartburg College in Northeast Iowa, where I studied Biology and competed on the Men’s Track and Field Team. I have since moved to Florida and am in my fourth year of school at the Nova Southeastern University College of Optometry and I am serving as the 2013-2014 AFOS Liason for NSU.
Western University of Health Science College of Optometry
Dane Baker, Email
University of the Incarnate Word Rosenberg School of Optometry
Adam Garcia-Manfredi, email: email@example.com
Samantha Rieger, Army, 4-year HPSP
"I'm originally from Basking Ridge, NJ, graduated from Wake Forest University, and was commissioned into the US Army. I served as an Environmental Science Officer with assignments to the 82nd ABN DIV at Ft Bragg, OIF, and USACHPPM-North at Ft Meade. I am currently a third year student at UIW Rosenberg School of Optometry and hold leadership positions as UIW RSO's AOSA Trustee and AFOS Local Liaison and participate in BSK and NOSA. I enjoy long distance running and participating in triathlons. I am looking forward to continuing my service in the US Army upon graduation in 2013.”
Southern College of Optometry
University of Missouri-St. Louis College of Optometry
Nicholas Wenande, Army, 3-year HPSP
"I am originally from Mitchell, South Dakota, and am in my second year at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. As local liason, I hope to increase the awareness of this wonderful program and the excellent opprotunities that such a scholarship provides. I am gratiful for the opprotunity to serve my country and help our service men and women while at the same time working in the career field I greatly enjoy. I am excited to serve my country upon graduation in 2015."
Rachel Kaneta, Air Force, 3-year HPSP
"Hey everyone, my name is Rachel Kaneta. I was born and raised in Hawaii and completed my undergraduate studies in Oregon. I am currently a thrid year student attending the University of California-Berkeley School of Optometry. I feel extremely fortunate to be part of HPSP through the Air Force, because it gives me the opportunity to experience a unique healthcare setup that no other mode of optometric practice can offer. I look forward to helping others and learning all that I can. I am glad to serve as the AFOS Local Liaison at Berkeley so that I can tell other students about the program and what it involves!"