Portsmouth-born Tracy Ly is the latest member of her family to qualify as an optometrist with Vision Express, following her two brothers into the field. And her success has come much earlier than expected, with Tracy, aged 21, being one of only a select few in the UK to qualify four months ahead of her peers, after being hand-picked for a fast track into the profession.
Tracy’s brothers, Andrew who works at the Bluewater Vision Express store, and Harry at the Worcester store, are also optometrists. Andrew’s partner Eve is also retail manager of the company’s flagship Oxford Street store.
Tracy studied optometry at London City University before progressing into pre-registration training with Vision Express. She was soon encouraged to begin taking her exams earlier than planned, sitting her final tests recently.
Tracy said: “Working towards my qualification was really intense – much more so than I had imagined - but I’m so happy to now be a qualified optometrist after all the hard work. It still feels surreal!
“I can say, hand on heart, that I couldn’t have passed my exams without the support of my friends, family, colleagues, supervisor and mentor.”
Tracy developed a passion for optometry when she was younger, working in her local optician as a receptionist when she was just 14. It was when she started working for Vision Express, however, that her career really began taking shape.
“I worked as a sales associate for Vision Express in Canary Wharf when I was in my second year of university and it was a huge turning point for me,” explains Tracy.
“It allowed me to become more confident communicating with customers, and perhaps more importantly, it’s where I met some fantastic colleagues who taught me how to be a good team member, as well as a good optometrist.”
Tracy is currently anticipating a transfer to her hometown of Portsmouth, having worked at the Islington store since the beginning of her in-store training.
She concluded: “While it’s been an experience moving away to focus on my qualifications, my heart is in Portsmouth, so I really hope I can return to work in the Cascades Centre store, and help the local community with their vision care needs.”
Vision Express offers an eye test to best practice guidelines of the College of Optometrists, with each Vision Express optometrist being a qualified eye health professional. To book an eye test at Vision Express’s Cascades Shopping Centre Portsmouth store, call 023 9282 3444, visit the store at Cascades Centre, Portsmouth, Hampshire, PO1 4RJ or book online.
About Vision Express
Vision Express is the third largest optical retailer in the UK and part of GrandVision,the global leader in optical retail operating across 43 countries, spanning over 5,800 stores and online.
With more than 390 stores nationwide, Vision Express first opened its doors in Newcastle in 1988. Built on a passion for the profession, it has gone from strength to strength, driven by a commitment to unparalleled customer service and providing the best individual optical care, the right product and great value. Customers can select from a vast range of genuine designer brands and the latest technology lenses, through to complete glasses from £39.
Vision Express is considered one of the leading and most trusted opticians in the UK and Ireland, with its European offering supported through sister eye care brands Grand Optical, Solaris and Generale D'Optique.
With around 4,000 employees, Vision Express makes a significant difference to the communities it operates within, and the organisations it chooses to support. As part of its commitment to Vision. Taken Seriously, and as a responsible and caring retailer, Vision Express is proud to partner with a range of healthcare charities, which have touched the lives of customers and teams. These companies provide vital support to people affected by vision-related conditions. They are part of the Vision Express Charity Project and include:
- Alzheimer’s Research UK
- Childhood Eye Cancer Trust (CHECT)
- International Glaucoma Association
- Macular Society
- Stroke Association
- Temple Street University Hospital.