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The courtyard of Salus University

Salus University was established by the Pennsylvania College of Optometry, one of the oldest colleges of optometry in North America, on July 1, 2008. Long noted for its innovative curriculum and high standards, PCO has established accredited degree programs in other disciplines over the past twenty-five years. "Salus," a Latin word meaning "health and well-being," more aptly describes the new university, which is located in Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, a suburb of Philadelphia, and consists of four colleges:

  • Pennsylvania College of Optometry (PCO): the University's founding College, established in 1919.
  • George S. Osborne College of Audiology: named for the late founding dean of the PCO School of Audiology, established in 2000.
  • College of Education and Rehabilitation: new home of Graduate Studies in Vision Impairment Programs; established in 1983.
  • College of Health Sciences: the Physician Assistant program, established in 2007, is located in this college.


Pennsylvania College of Optometry (PCO)

PCO is one of the oldest optometry schools and throughout most of the 20th century has been a leader in both training and research. It was the first school in the United States to confer the Doctor of Optometry degree after a four-year educational program. It was the first of all the optometry schools to receive regional accreditation and the first to offer courses in contact lenses. PCO was the first to offer inter-disciplinary clinical training and have off-campus externship programs. It was also the first independent college of optometry to develop graduate programs in vision rehabilitation and affiliate with a medical school. It was also the first to revise its curriculum to integrate basic and clinical courses using a module approach; introducing clinical concepts, skills, and student’s presence early in the educational program rather than as an additional training after completion of basic studies.


The Eye Institute (TEI)

The Eye Institute (TEI) is the main clinical facility of PCO. TEI, from its inception to the present day, is a world renowned clinical facility that includes adult primary care, pediatric, vision rehabilitation, laser procedures, sub-specialty optometry services, and sub-specialty ophthalmology services. This premier training facility is open on a 24-hour basis and all graduates spend time in this facility beginning early in their studies. TEI is essentially like a teaching hospital, providing the clinical element to complement the academic program.

Within the Eye Institute is the William Feinbloom Vision Rehabilitation Center. The center is concerned with low vision and receives patients from around the world. It remains today the leading low-vision research center in the world.

TEI has three clinics: the main clinic in West Oak Lane, plus two satellite clinics in Mt Airy and Strawberry Mansion.

PCO administers one of the country’s largest extern programs, where doctors-in-training rotate through private practices, clinics, government facilities, veteran’s hospitals, Department of the Interior Indian reservation clinics, and other clinical settings to afford their graduates the widest range of experience.

Cheltenham Township site (Elkins Park Campus)

In 1929, Henry W. Breyer, Jr., purchased the abandoned Lindenhurst property once owned by John Wanamaker in Cheltenham on York Road, below Washington Lane. (This area of Cheltenham is known as Elkins Park.) Breyer donated the former Wanamaker land to the Boy Scouts of America for use as a wildlife preserve.[1] Camp Henry W. Breyer was sold by the Philadelphia Council in 1990 and is now the site of the Pennsylvania College of Optometry.

The Elkins Park Campus is situated on 11 acres (45,000 m2) of land in Cheltenham Township, and is three miles (5 km) from TEI.


External links

40°05′07″N 75°07′52″W / 40.0853°N 75.1311°W / 40.0853; -75.1311


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