Skip to Top NavigationSkip to ContentSkip to Footer
Ferris State University BulldogFerris State University Logo

Student Spotlight: Tristan Voelker

Meet Second Year MCO Student Tristan Voelker

Tristan Voelker

MCO Student Tristan Voelker

What is your educational background? 

I attended Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa, where I majored in Biology and minored in Spanish. 

What was your path prior to optometry school and is there anything that makes your path unique?

I’ve always been to the eye doctor for checkups, but the thought of pursuing it as a career didn’t occur to me until my last year of high school. When I was in early high school and getting involved with choir, I thought I was going to be a music teacher. After shadowing my optometrist and dissecting a cow eyeball in an Anatomy class, I knew that optometry was the field I wanted to pursue. 

Why did you choose to attend MCO? 

The class size, location, and board passage rates brought my attention to MCO when I was trying to decide where I wanted to spend the next 4 years of my life and learn all I needed to for my career. The warmth of the community and how welcome I felt during my interview really enticed me to stay.

Tristan Voelker and friend

What makes MCO so special to you?

The college I attended for undergraduate had smaller class sizes, so it was important to me to attend an optometry school that would cater to that. One of the things that is really special about MCO is the ability to make some deep connections with those around you, whether it be your classmates, your professors, or even just staff members in the building. Everyone gets along really well. It has been amazing to have professors treat you as an equal and know you on a first-name basis. 

What are some of your fondest memories at MCO?

 Of course, some of the most fun memories are the big events like Broomball, Eyeball, and Vision Olympics. One of my favorite events of the year is when the professors cook late-night breakfast for the whole school and we get to show up in our pajamas. 

Tristan Voelker and friends

Who/What is your inspiration?

 My biggest inspiration would have to be my parents back in Iowa. They both have had to work extremely hard for everything they have, especially my dad. I attribute any success I’ve had in my life to them and everything they’ve taught me.

At MCO, what type of things are you involved in and what do you enjoy most about them?

 I am involved with 2 of the RSOs at MCO as an e-board member. Specifically, I am the treasurer of MOSPPA and the president-elect for OSG. I really enjoy the outreach and networking that MOSPPA provides through the events it puts on during the school year. It’s a great opportunity for students to get a chance to talk to some real-life doctors. OSG does a lot for the school and does a good job of getting the students involved.

Tristan Voelker with another

If there was one thing you could say to an incoming MCO student, what would that be?

 Be ready to meet some people that you’ll want to be around for the rest of your life.

If there was one thing you could say to a MCO alumni, what would that be?

 I'm excited to carry on the legacy of MCO.