Dr. Leona Chen initially began her career in Chemical Engineering when in 1974 she was awarded the prestigious Alexander S. Langsdorf Fellowship at Washington University School for Engineering and Applied Science in St. Louis, Missouri. She was one of four Fellows selected from a nationwide competition and one of three female chemical engineering students in a class of several hundred. During her chemical engineering studies, she earned a patent for a chemical process to treat industrial wastewater that recovered valuable ingredients for a manufacturing company and reduced the release of harmful and costly waste products into the public water system.
Dr. Chen graduated in three years at the top of her class, and although she enjoyed the problem solving aspect of engineering, she found that she missed having more personal interactions. She decided to pursue medicine as a career, hoping to combine her analytical problem solving talents with her strong communication skills.
In 1977, Dr. Chen was admitted to Cornell University Medical College as the first woman of Chinese descent to enter the medical school as a first year student. As she narrowed down her interests to ophthalmology, she performed research at the Rockefeller University on the effects of various anti-oxidants on the prevention of cataracts. Upon graduation, she completed her first year of residency in Internal Medicine at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Medical Center in New York City and stayed there to complete three additional years of residency in Ophthalmology. During her final year, she served as Chief Resident of Ophthalmology.
Since 1985, Dr. Chen has been in private practice in Ophthalmology in New York City where she successfully combines her analytical and technical skills with her desire to create long-term relationships with patients. Happily, she often takes care of three generations of patients, addressing the needs of patients of all ages. Her patients are especially pleased with her ability to explain the issues that affect their eyes in an understandable way. Her manner is comforting and educational, and the many warm friendships that evolve from her interactions with patients are a testament to the reassuring and professional care they receive and to the trust they place in her.
" To be trusted is the greatest compliment of all."
Dr. Chen is a diplomate of The American Board of Ophthalmology, a member of the American Academy of Ophthalmology, and has been consistently named as one of America's Top Ophthalmologists. She practices both surgical and medical ophthalmology and is happy to see patients of all ages.
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