Salus University
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Established1919 (1919) (PCO)
July 1, 2008 (July 1, 2008) (Salus)
TypePrivate graduate school
PresidentMichael H. Mittelman
ProvostJanice E. Scharre
Academic staff377
LocationElkins Park, Pennsylvania, United States
11.5-acre main campus
ColorsRed, Orange, and Gray
MascotSal the Salamander[1]

Salus University is a private university in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, specializing in degree programs for the health care professions.[2]


The university’s founding college, the Pennsylvania State College of Optometry, also often called the Pennsylvania College of Optometry (PCO), was founded in 1919, and it is one of the oldest optometry colleges in North America. The decision to found the college was reached at an annual conference of the Pennsylvania Optical Society in 1918.[3][4] PCO was the first school in the United States to confer the legislature-approved Doctor of Optometry degree after its four-year educational program.[5]

In 1975, PCO was the first college of optometry to develop a comprehensive, off-campus externship program.[6] Later that year the college began construction on its main clinical facility, The Eye Institute (TEI), which opened in 1978 to serve as a training site for optometry students and as a community vision care center for the public. At the time of its opening this was the first interdisciplinary clinical facility at an optometry school which centered around patient care with graduate students.[6] Presently TEI has three clinics: the main clinic in West Oak Lane, plus two satellite clinics in Mt Airy and East Falls.

In 2000 PCO became the first school of optometry in the county to offer a Doctor of Audiology (Au.D) degree when it received accreditation by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.[7][8] By 2003 the college had created a distance education program for licensed and practicing audiologists called AuDonline and was finalizing construction of a new building to be used by students in the AuD curriculum by their commencement. The new building, known as the Pennsylvania Ear Institute (PEI) was opened on November 19, 2004 shortly before the college's first AuD students would begin their four-year curriculum.[9] As of 2017 Salus alumni comprise more than 23% of all Doctors of Audiology in the United States.[7]

The change in name to Salus University was officially established on July 1, 2008. The name Salus, a Latin word for health and well-being, was unanimously chosen by the university board of trustees as "an expression of the institution's dedication to the preservation of the health and well-being of the communities its graduates serve."[6] At this time the PCO College of Audiology was also renamed to the George S. Osborne College of Audiology in the memory of Dr. Osborne who was a key individual in the development of the AuD degree and also dean of the program at Salus. The university currently consists of four colleges: Pennsylvania College of Optometry; George S. Osborne College of Audiology; College of Education and Rehabilitation; and College of Health Sciences.

Clinical facilities Edit

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Optometry Edit

The Eye Institute (TEI) was established in 1978 in the West Oak Lane section of Philadelphia, and in 2010 completed renovation. In addition to its main West Oak Lane location, The Eye Institute has two satellite offices in Philadelphia, one in the East Falls section and one in the Chestnut Hill section.

Audiology Edit

Established in 2004, Pennsylvania Ear Institute is located at the school’s Elkins Park campus and serves as a clinical site for Doctor of Audiology students enrolled in the Osborne College of Audiology.

Speech Language Pathology Edit

The Speech Language Institute is the clinical facility for students enrolled in the University's Speech-Language Pathology master's degree program. The Institute opened in July 2015 on the University's campus in Elkins Park, PA.


  1. "Introducing... Sal the Salamander". Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  2. "About Salus University". Salus University. Archived from the original on 3 February 2014. Retrieved 25 January 2014.
  3. "Personals". The Allentown Morning Call. December 31, 1918. p. 10. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  4. "Technical Talks to Optometrists". Harrisburg Telegraph. October 14, 1919. p. 9. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
  5. "Optometry degree program at college". Gettysburg, Pennsylvania: The Gettysburg Times. October 6, 1989. p. 19. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 "Pennsylvania College of Optometry Becomes a University". AudiologyOnline. May 20, 2008. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Salus University - Our History". Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  8. "Justin W. Beamer receives Doctor of Optometry Degree". Tyrone. Pennylvania: The Daily Herald. June 21, 2005. p. 3. Retrieved 20 May 2017.
  9. "History of the Pennsylvania Ear Institute of Salus University". Retrieved 20 May 2017.

External linksEdit

Template:Education in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania Template:Cheltenham

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