Luann Cade, MS ’94, COMS

Why did you choose your particular profession?
I was looking for a master's degree program and sort of "fell into it.”

Luann Cade - Salus 100 StoryTell me about your time at Salus/PCO. Why did you choose to study there?
My sister was studying at PCO to be an optometrist. I was looking for a MS program, and she sent me information regarding the Orientation & Mobility (O&M) program. I wanted to continue my education in teaching. I up and quit my current job, moved across the state to Philadelphia, with a roommate I had never met, into a row house I had never seen, and into an educational program, which I knew very little about. It was the biggest and best risk I ever took!

What are some of your favorite memories from Salus/PCO – favorite classes, professors, classmates, clinical experiences, co-workers?
I have many favorite memories, however, Dr. Audrey Smith's low vision classes were always some of my favorite. She used to keep us for hours (past class time) because she had so much she wanted to teach us. She was a wealth of knowledge, and such a personable professor. She will always be my favorite, and she used to bribe us to stay longer in class by buying us pizza. At the time, we thought we made out because of the pizza, however, in retrospect it was all the low vision knowledge that she taught us that was the real prize! Also, our many field trips to guide dog schools and organizations in New York, New Jersey,  and Maryland. Such great memories!

Luann Cade - Salus 100 StoryTell me about your life after Salus/PCO – where do/did you practice, how long?
Upon graduation, I had a job immediately in my field. I began one month to the day, (to allow for moving) of my PCO graduation, at the Pittsburgh Blind Association, in Pittsburgh, Pa., as an Orientation & Mobility Specialist. I worked there for just over four years, until I got married. In 1998 I moved to Cleveland, Ohio to relocate with my husband. I worked at Vision Rehabilitation as an Orientation & Mobility Specialist for three years. Upon having our first child, we relocated back to our home area. I then began working for Keystone Blind Association as an O&M Specialist, where I remain 18 years later. I have worked constantly since I graduated, and never had a problem getting a job when I relocated. PCO offered me the education and opportunity to work with both children and adults, and 24 years later, I am very thankful!

As Salus/PCO celebrates 100 years in 2019, what are your hopes for the college in the next 100 years?
Even though the name has changed, I hope they stay true to the education that I received at PCO. Dedication to the field of Education & Rehabilitation to the field of blindness and low vision was always our main goal.

-Luann Cade, MS ’94, COMS