See to Succeed Program Gives Sight to Students

See To Succeed Program Gives Sight to Students
Posted on 12/12/2013
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See To Succeed

` A simple pair of plastic frames may not seem like a lot- but to Meador Elementary fourth-grader Brianna Torres, the black and purple patterned glasses she picked out meant she would be able to see the board in class.

And more than 1,200 Pasadena ISD students agree.

 Earlier this month, thousands of students across the district were able to receive free comprehensive eye exams and corrective lenses at San Jacinto College thanks to the district's partnership with See to Succeed.

The See to Succeed program is part of an initiative with the Houston Department of Health and Human Services that is now in its third year of providing free eye care services for area students including eye examinations, screenings and fittings, and assistance in detecting undiagnosed vision problems.

Debra Clarke, the program director for the eye care technology program at San Jacinto College, said the idea for the unique program started as a response to the 20,000 students in the Houston area that were identified as having unresolved eye problems.     

“When we started analyzing the numbers, we realized that there wasn’t a program in place that was large enough to serve the students in the neighboring districts,” Clarke said. “Bottom line- we need to take care of our kids, and San Jacinto College has the space and resources to do that for our community. We built this building so that it would function like an eye care clinic so that we can serve our community- that’s what a community college does.”

After the eye screening process was completed, students were invited to select from dozens of frames and styles to fit their need. Partners include San Jacinto College, Wal-Mart, the University of Houston College of Optometry, Berkley Eye Center, Essilor Vision Foundation and the dozens of volunteers and school nurses who made the event possible.

“This was my first time to get glasses,” said Torres as she smiled from ear to ear. “My favorite part was picking what kind of glasses I wanted, and now I can see.”