Current Student News

New NEI Grant Awarded; Dr. Scheiman is Study Chair

The National Eye Institute (NEI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently awarded an $8 million, U10 grant to the Convergence Insufficiency Treatment Trial (CITT) Investigator Group. Salus University Clinical Research associate dean, Dr. Mitchell Scheiman, is the Study Chair. There will be eight clinical sites for the study, including The Eye Institute of Salus University and Dr. Michael Galloway will head the TEI project.

Convergence insufficiency (CI) is a common binocular vision disorder, affecting 5-10% of school-age children. In addition to visual discomfort, children with CI and their parents report symptoms affecting reading performance, such as loss of place, loss of concentration, reading slowly, and trouble remembering what was read.
This study is a five-year, randomized clinical trial designed to determine whether the successful treatment of convergence insufficiency leads to improved attention and reading in children 9- to 14-years old.  

New Security Position

Wayne Pancza, director of Safety and Security announced the promotion of Gary Hughes to the new position of Lead Security Officer (LSO) earlier this month. As LSO, Mr. Hughes is responsible for providing orientation and training as needed for all  existing and new Salus University security officers. He also will be responsible for the scheduling of the Department of Safety and Security’s workforce. LSO Hughes will work directly with the director of Safety and Security to help develop safety and security guidelines along with policies and procedures for Salus University Safety & Security department and the University.

Mr. Hughes’ background includes 30 years’ experience with the Philadelphia Police Department, where he was assigned to many different units, including patrol; narcotics; plain clothes undercover; investigative; civil affairs; ADA complaints; arbitration and grievance. 

The Salus University community warmly welcomes its newest members:

  • Marietta Dooley, Classroom Technology Manager, TLS
  • Dr. Sally Ann Geiss, Assistant Professor, SLP department, CER
  • Maya Fuller-Little, HR Specialist
  • Vadiris O’Neill, Billing Specialist, TEI
  • Claire Wyszynski, AA, registrar

The Salus University community offers sincere congratulations to the following members:

  • Amanda Lusaitis, who has moved from the Office of the Registrar to a new position as Student Affairs Administrative Coordinator.
  • Dr. Lauren Sponseller, assistant professor, OT department, who with husband, Kyle, welcomed son Luke Edward James Sponseller in April.
  • Dr. Satya Verma, who was interviewed by Dr. Kathy Freeman on the topic of eyecare for the geriatric patient for The two-part interview can be found on, Elsevier’s educational website ( 


  • Lynne Dellinger, director, TVI program, on the passing of her mother, Ruth Davis.
  • Dr. Maria Parisi, director, PCO externship program, on the passing of her father, Vito Parisi.


Dr. Jan E. Scharre, provost and vice president of Academic Affairs, announced the appointment of Lori Grover, OD, PhD, as dean of the Pennsylvania College of Optometry last week.

Dr. Grover brings more than 23 years of experience to her new position that includes optometric education, private practice, clinical care of chronic vision impairment, curricular programming, interprofessional education and clinical research that intersects low vision and health services research.

Dr. Grover currently serves as director of the Center for Translational Health Science and is an associate professor in the Department of Health Solutions at Arizona State University.  As a member of the leadership teams for the president and the deans of the ASU College of Nursing and Health Innovation, and the College of Health Solutions, Dr. Grover provides strategic, academic and operational direction as well as research and planning recommendations to advance the overall mission of the colleges and university. 

She is a graduate of Illinois College of Optometry and Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, where she earned her PhD. Dr. Grover was one of the first faculty members at Johns Hopkins University to complete the leadership training program in the Office of Women in Science and Medicine.  Her academic experience includes faculty appointments in the Department of Ophthalmology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Southern California College of Optometry.

Dr. Grover possesses a record of extramural funding from the National Eye Institute, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and private foundations.  Throughout her career, she has served in a number of leadership appointments of professional societies and is a Diplomate of the Public Health and Environmental Vision Section of the American Academy of Optometry.  


Accreditations Awarded

The Occupational Therapy program received full accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association  (AOTA) earlier this month.

New SLP Program Offers Info on Campus

In honor of May, the “Better Hearing and Speech Month,” the faculty and staff of the Department of Speech–Language and Pathology (SLP) in the College of Education and Rehabilitation provided the Salus community with information regarding the profession of Speech-Language Pathology and an update on the program’s accreditation and construction of the Speech Clinic in the Breyer Office Park building on the Elkins Park campus.

Department chair and program director, Dr. Carolyn Mayo, and SLP faculty and staff were on-hand during lunchtime outside the University’s Café on two days to present information on: Communication Milestones; Stroke Awareness; Health Literacy; Vocal Hygiene for Professors; Accent Modification and Reflux Prevention.

The Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology degree program will welcome its first class in the 2014-2015 academic year.


Audiology Extern Reception  

On Monday, April 28, the faculty and staff of Osborne College of Audiology gathered in the Bennett Lounge of the Hafter Center to celebrate third-year audiology students before they left campus on their one-year externships.

Audiology Extern Reception

Members of the Class of 2015 pictured in the back row, left to right are:  Samantha Nieves; Jonathan Brittian; Lauren Matsko; Amy Kalenderian; Michelle Okafor; Alisha Latham; Brendon Boudwin; Andrea Graham; Jenna Pellicori; Brittany Viniarski; Elizabeth Swartz; Travis Deputy; Paris Florence; Jamie Guinan and Artem Yusupov. Front row, left to right are: Silvia Benitez-Sienra; Megan Piekosz; Kim Loan Huynh; Dr. Jonette Owens, External Clinical Education coordinator; Jaymee Levine; Lyndsey Spencer; Katie Thompson; Dean Victor Bray, and Seth Weible.


Accreditations Awarded

The Physician Assistant program was granted seven-year continuing accreditation status in March by the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant (ARC- PA). The next ARC-PA review date is March 2021. 

National American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA)

L to R: Mrs. Vause, Bethany Rohrs
and Dr. Vause, Director of the Salus University Physician Assistant program.

Many Salus University Physician Assistant (PA) students  recently attended the National American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA) conference  held in Boston, MA on Memorial Day weekend.  It was an exciting event for PA students and faculty alike. 

Bethany Rohrs, a first year student, represented Salus University’s PA Program in the AAPA Student Academy Assembly of Representatives (AOR).  The Student Academy  of the AAPA  was created to represent the unique views and needs of PA students.  The AOR is the governing body of SAAAPA and is comprised of one representative from each Physician Assistant  program’s student society. 

As the Salus University AOR representative, Bethany acted as liaison between the students and SAAAPA.  The AOR reviews, deliberations, and votes on resolutions that are submitted to the Board by the student societies.  The carried resolutions set the Student Academy agenda for the upcoming year.  Bethany participated in debate and discussions pertaining to the resolutions, while representing the interests of the students in the Salus PA Program.  The executive branch of SAAAPA is led by their Board of Directors, who are elected by AOR representatives at the annual AAPA conference. 

Bethany had the unique opportunity to run and was elected for the position of Director of Student Communications.  In her new role on the SAAAPA Board, she will work on coordinating efforts at the national level to promote local action by individual student societies and PA students.  Bethany will also serve as Chair for the Communication and Outreach Volunteer Group to fulfill the mission set forth by the AOR resolutions.  She endorses the concept that effective communication requires timely, accurate exchange of information through multiple media to reach a diverse audience.  Bethany looks forward to promoting the PA profession while representing Salus University at the national level in her new role this upcoming year, however, she is just as excited to start her clinical rotations this September.

PhD White Coat Ceremony

A white coat ceremony was held late last month for Ms. Wafa Al-Otibi, a student in the PhD Biomedicine program from Saudi Arabia, who could not be present for the ceremony held in August.

Pictured above are Ms. Al-Otibi, Dr. Pierrette Dayhaw-Barker, founding dean of the Biomedicine program and Ms. Noura Aldossary, who received her white coat in August.