2nd Annual Essay Writing Contest Winner

August 15, 2016 - Updated: August 16, 2016

Congratulations to Molly Lin for winning this year's essay writing contest! This year, we asked contestants to write about what they were passionate about, what their goals were, and how they would go about achieving them. Please continue reading to find out what Molly's passions and goals are, and how she will achieve them. 

Passion is the energy that drives me. It allows me to set goals and keeps my life fulfilled with excitement and happiness. My passions and goals are constantly adapting to the changing environment that I surround myself in. The three main passions that play an integral part of my life are science, economy, and music. 

I have developed a passion for science ever since I was a child. When I was three, I was diagnosed with tracheitis, an inflammation of the trachea primarily due to genetic predisposition. The condition severely damaged my immune system and was the reason for my frequent absences in school. As a child, I looked up to the physicians and hospital staff for their extensive knowledge, compassionate character, and incomparable work ethic. This sparked my initial interest in the health-care field. Throughout my educational career, I was inspired by and thus drawn towards the field of science because it is never stagnant—it is a continuous learning curve. Clinical, pharmaceutical, and biological research are constantly taking place with the unified goal of improving health-care. In addition, the ever-changing property of international economy also interests me. Therefore, I enrolled in a dual-degree undergraduate program of human physiology and business administration at Western University. 

However, the act of combining two fields into one career choice was one of the greatest challenge yet. After countless academic-counselling appointments, research and job-shadowing experiences, I have decided to pursue the field of optometry for three reasons. First, I am particularly intrigued by the visual system of human body. It is a complex, intricate and vital system that shows great evidence for evolutionary forces. Second, the field of optometry successfully integrates both fields of science and business. It allows doctors to open up private practices with an optical dispensing component that operate under a business model. Last but not least, I value the patient-doctor relationship that is absent in many health-care occupations such as pharmacy. 

Although I have now been accepted to the Doctor of Optometry program at University of Waterloo, my goals do not end here. Research is a fundamental aspect and provides a cutting-edge to clinical care.  I hope to assist in experimental research and further specialize my scope of practice, after completion of my degree, by participating in ocular health residency. This allows me to be more exposed to and achieve a greater understanding of ocular diseases such as diabetic retinopathy, retinal detachment, and glaucoma. I would also like to open up multiple locations of my private practice in Canada, and perhaps the United States, in the future. This is one of the reasons why I am interested in real estate. 

Similar to science, real estate is an integral part of the national economy that is constantly changing due to various factors such as gross domestic product. My father is strongly passionate about the field is constantly updating the family about recent news on the housing market. Due to his influence, I am also very fascinated by real estate. I believe that it is essential for a private practice to have an appropriate location. The target market, average income, and health status of the neighbourhood would in turn determine the service pricing, business culture, and practice specialization of the clinic.  

In addition, I am very passionate about the performing arts—specifically music. Growing up I have always enjoyed to sing; I studied alongside many talented musicians in Unionville High School’s Arts York program; and I was privately trained for the flute from two of the most inspiring mentors at Markham Music Academy. I picked up the flute in grade five and attended the academy from grade eight to twelve. In these seven years I have received many awards and competed in various music festivals such as the Kiwanis Music Festival of Greater Toronto. I also obtained grade eight standing for the Royal Conservatory of Music Examinations in both flute performance and theory.  

Although I have stopped my flute training since my freshman year of university, music still plays an important role in my life. Music has shaped my character and taught me how to appreciate art. It has taught me many transferrable skills such as empathy, ability to pick up emotional cues, and attention to detail. One important aspect of music is that a good performance is not merely the strict execution of techniques, but also the ability to bring the notes to life in each listener’s mind. Musical training also contributes to the intuitive nature of my personality, that is, I look beyond the facts and evidences to make abstract connections. This is important for a career in optometry because every patient is different, and a physician must look beyond the mere numbers displayed by the microscopes and phoropters to tailor every prescription to each patient’s needs. Therefore, I seek to revitalize my musical training after the completion of my degree by continue learning the flute and picking up the piano. 

Although not every passion is made into my profession, my passions challenge myself to set goals according to my interests and act to achieve them. Passion is what makes my life meaningful. 


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