The 2021 NZAO Awards

The 2021 New Zealand Association of Optometrists (NZAO) Student Awards was a warm, friendly affair, celebrating the achievements of this year’s top optometry students and recognising the work of the country’s optometry industry association.


Clearly delighted to meet in person this year, BOptom students from Auckland University’s School of Optometry and Vision Science, their teachers and NZAO council members attended the awards at the Cordis Hotel in Auckland. “NZAO values this opportunity to support optometry students and we are especially proud of how well you all coped with the challenges 2020 presented,” said NZAO president Rochelle Van Eysden who introduced other council members to present the awards and provide personal accounts of the names behind the awards and their contribution to our optometry profession.


“Thanks to the hard work and dedication of the optometry champions these awards are named after, optometrists enjoy a much wider scope of practice in New Zealand today,” said NZAO’s newest council member, Hadyn Treanor. “Optometry in New Zealand is still young as a profession but has come a very long way in a short space of time.”


This year’s award winners are:


  • Jason Shen - the Peg Wood Award for the most outstanding undergraduate student in clinical optometry for special populations
  • Stephanie Joy May-Fen Green - the Michael Kalloniatis Award for top student entering BOptom Part V\
  • Nana Kwasi Aborampa-Mensah - the Rob Jacobs Award for top student entering BOptom Part IV
  • Mahaya Koyui Chan - the Leon Garner Award for top student entering BOptom Part III
  • Gurnoor Kaur Aulakh - most improved student entering BOptom Part IV
  • Anna Xiong - most improved student entering BOptom Part V
  • Malia Senerita 'Akanete Pateli - top Māori/Pacific Island student entering BOptom Part II


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