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By LISA MARCUS and PAUL BRADFORDUCHERA / Staff reporterAssociated PressWEST PALM BEACH, Fla.

(AP) — There are no guarantees in the field of optometry.

Optometry degrees are no guarantee of success.

There are some students who get a bachelor’s degree and some who don’t.

But the more you know about the world of optometrists, the more it becomes clear that the quality of education is always paramount, said David Schaller, the president of the American Optometrists Association.

Schaller says the profession is one of the best in the world.

But he said there are some who are less qualified than others.

Optometrists get a degree by taking an online course, and the average amount of money that is spent is less than 1 percent of a typical physician’s practice.

Schaler said that makes for a competitive market that attracts the best and the brightest.

It also puts a strain on the profession’s already strained resources.

Schallers association is one example of a trend that has been gaining steam.

In 2016, there were 2,831,000 total medical school graduates, and about 2,700,000 in residency programs, according to the Association of American Medical Colleges.

The average annual salary for a practicing physician was $110,000, and those with degrees earned an average of $126,000.

Schalling said that means there are more graduates today than ever before.

The median age for physicians is just over 30, with some people turning 40 before graduating.

And while many optometrist graduates live in cities like San Francisco, New York and Los Angeles, others choose to live in remote areas, like the coast.

Some optometris have a strong desire to live and work in the city where they get their training, while others opt to live near family members.

There is no shortage of students in both fields.

Schalls association offers the following information on how to apply for a degree:• How much money does your degree cost?• What do you want to study and where do you live?• How many hours a week do you work?• Are you currently registered for classes?• Do you have a social media account?• If you are a current student, are you still applying for classes or have you already been accepted?• Can you help to teach or conduct clinical studies?• Does your family have health insurance?• Have you already earned a doctorate or a doctorates?• Has the school been approved by a state for accreditation?

Schallers office is located at 721 S. Ponce de Leon Ave., West Palm Beach, Florida 33709.

(561) 735-2484.

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