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UABSO celebrated the class of 2018 on Mother’s Day weekend. The young men and women who received the doctor of optometry degree brought the number of optometrists UABSO has graduated to 1,600.

2018 School of Optometry Graduates with Dean

The Saturday celebration was as festive as always with supporters of graduates filling the Alys Stephens Center. Dr. Sam Pierce, incoming AOA president and UABSO alumnus, served as the commencement keynote speaker, while Dr. Mark Swanson, 2018 AOA Educator of the Year, was selected by the 2018 class to carry the ceremonial mace.

Each year, we enjoy bringing attention to our legacy and alumni who are part of the UABSO family. This year, Dr. Brittany Moates, daughter of Dr. Kenneth Moates, class of 1987, and her mother, Dr. Valerie Moates, class of 1988, were recognized as Legacy Alumni.

Additional alumni families with graduates this year were Dr. Andrew Sahawneh, nephew of Dr. Mazen Sahawneh, class of 1980, and Mark Whittington, brother of Dr. Jennifer Stevens, class of 2010. Our legacy and alumni relatives had the honor of assisting in the hooding of these graduates at the ceremony, and optometrists from other programs hooded their relatives as well. We also had newly married classmates assisting in each other’s hooding.

Twelve optometry residents received their certificates of residency during the graduation ceremony. Since the program’s inception in 1978, UABSO has awarded residence certificates to 369 optometrists.

Congratulations to the Class of 2018, and the newest UABSO alumni!