January 22, 2006

Attendance: Ms. Zaynab Abdulhussain, Dr. Mark E. Clement, Dr. Robert M. Cole, III, Dr. Harry Kaplan, Dr. Thomas J. Landry, Dr. and Mrs. Richard D. Lappen, Dr. Thomas L. Lewis, Dr. Marie A. Marrone-Moriarty, Dr. John T. Ochsenreither, Dr. Alan Ostroff, Dr. Robert A. Rosenberg, Dr. Kevin Ryan, Mr. Steven Shaw, Ms. Hannah Song, Dr. Karen Wrigley, Ms. Lynne C. Corboy, and Ms. Ellen J. Mueller.

After a tour of the nearly completed Hafter Student Community Center, the meeting began at 10:52 a.m.  The minutes, presented by Dr. Rosenberg, were approved with no corrections or additions.  The treasurer’s report was presented by Dr. John Ochsenreither.

Treasurer Report

The balance as of June 30, 2005 $ 94,715.00
Auction 260.00
Interest & Dividend 399.00
Gains (losses) 6,317.00
Total Income $6,976.00
Orientation Party ($ 500.00)
Balance as of December 31, 2005 $101,191.00

Dr. Robert Cole reported that the College started a second Lions Club for the Elkins Park campus.  The membership of the new club and the old club, chartered in Philadelphia, work together in community outreach.  Recently, the Lions Club worked with the faculty at TEI to provide eye care for the Hurricane Katrina victims that had been evacuated to Philadelphia. 

The School of Audiology celebrates the one-year anniversary of the opening of the Pennsylvania Ear Institute.  The very first class of residential students, now in their third year, are starting their externships this winter.  The School now has 22 residential and 744 online students enrolled.

Hopefully you read in Perspectives that Dr. Susan Oleszewski ’76 has been promoted to Vice President and Executive Director of Patient Care Services.  She is in charge of patient care at The Eye Institute (TEI) and the College’s satellite clinics in Strawberry Mansion and Mt. Airy.  Dr. Oleszewski had been the acting vice president since December 2004. 

To give you a sneak preview of the Fall PCO World, the cover story will be on three junior faculty members who completed fellowships or earned additional degrees.  The magazine will also profile an optometry/audiology couple who both graduated from PCO. 

The College is naming the walkway in front of the student center "Crozier Way" after the Crozier family.  We can each have a Crozier Way brick for only $1,000.

Dr. Thomas Lewis updated the Association Board on the Kresge Foundation Challenge.  All pledges after June 17, 2005, will count towards the $800,000 needed to complete the fundraising campaign for the Hafter Student Community Center.  As of Friday, January 20, 2006, PCO had just under $300,000 more to raise.  There is a foundation and several other prospective donors that have been asked and we are waiting for their answer.  Because of the PCO Community’s generosity, the College is very close to raising the $3 million dollars needed to match the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s $3 million grant. 

At the next Board of Trustees meeting, the Board will consider a proposal to create a physician’s assistant program at the College.  PCO would be the fifth institution to have such a program in the Philadelphia area.  There is a such a need for physician’s assistants (P.A.) that area hospitals have already indicated that they would accept PCO P.A. students in clinical rotations. 

Traditional P.A. programs are 26 months long.  The students attend didactic classes for 12 months straight and then have 12 months of clinical rotations in hospitals and private practice sites.  PCO would not have to build clinics for a P.A. program.  The final months are spent preparing for the national board examination. 

If the College does create a physician’s assistant program, the Board of Trustees would have to consider changing the name of the College and seeking university status.  The Optometry program would always be known as PCO and would include the largest number of students.  Dr. Lewis compared the name to the Wharton School of Business.  Business people know of the business school at the University of Pennsylvania simply as the Wharton School of Business.  They rarely add the University’s name because the business community knows them as Wharton. 

Dr. Cole proposed that the Alumni Association make a $25,000 pledge towards the Student Community Center to be paid over five years.  Dr. Ochsenreither distributed projections showing what the financial implications would be to make a gift of that size over five years.  If the Association’s treasury has an 8% return for the next five years, the Association will earn enough in investment income to pay the pledge without hurting the principle.  Even if the return is only as high as 6%, the principal in the treasury would still be at least $89,000.

Dr. Harry Kaplan motioned that the pledge for $25,000 be made and Dr. John Ochsenreither seconded the motion.  All approved; there were no objections.

Dr. Thomas Landry gave the Awards Committee Report.  Dr. Derrick Artis, class of 1989, will be presented with the Alumnus of the Year Award.  He is the Director of Professional Relations at Vistakon and was influential when Vistakon endowed a diversity scholarship at the College. He has been generous to the Hafter Student Center campaign on his own. 

Alcon will be receiving the Special Recognition Award.  Mr. David Sattler will be attending the Reunion to accept the award on behalf of Alcon.  The company has done so much for the profession.  For PCO they sponsored a computer lab at the Elkins Park Campus during the New Horizons campaign, gave a leadership gift for the Hafter Student Center, and have supported scholarships and the residency program.

Dr. Marie Marrone-Moriarty, Chair of the Nominating Committee, presented the slate of officers and directors for 2006-2007.  The bylaws allow for 10 elected directors of the Board.  Only seven director positions are currently filled.  The committee will try to fill some of those open positions before the election in May. 

Dr. Rosenberg gave the Reunion/Special Events Committee Report.  The 2006 Alumni Reunion Weekend schedule is as follows:

Saturday, May 6 - On Campus:

10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Elkins Park Campus Open House, including tours of the Hafter Student Community Center
11:30-1:30 p.m. Lunch
1:00 - 2:00 p.m. Alumni Association Meeting

At the Doubletree Hotel Philadelphia:
6:30 p.m. Cocktail Reception
8:00 p.m. Dinner Dance

Sunday, May 22
10:00 a.m. Brunch at the Doubletree 

Dr. Rosenberg also informed the Association Board that PCO students participated in a vision screening at Philadelphia Community College on Monday, January 16, 2006.

Ellen Mueller announced that the Alumni Association continuing education program is scheduled for Sunday, April 2, 2006, at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Pittsburgh.  One corporate sponsor and one speaker have been confirmed.

Dr. Lewis suggested that the Association consider having a student appointed as an official voting member of the Alumni Association Board, similar to student representative to the College’s Board of Trustees.

The meeting adjourned at 11:44 a.m. with a motion by Dr. Wrigley.

Respectfully submitted,

Robert A. Rosenberg, OD, ’61