The University recently entered into four agreements designed to enhance the educational experiences of Salus students and faculty and the three institutions involved – Arcadia University, Drexel University and the MERF Institute of India - through academic, clinical and administrative collaborations. Three affiliated agreements - two Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) and an articulation agreement - were signed.
An MOU is a formal agreement between two or more parties and is, in the academic world, a wide-ranging agreement between two institutions that can involve collaborations on a number of levels. An articulation agreement, increasingly referred to these days as an affiliation agreement, is an agreement that is program-specific.
With an MOU, institutions collaborate in a variety of ways to provide students and faculty with superior opportunities on academic, clinical and administrative levels. In an articulation agreement, coursework between schools is coordinated to ensure students a smooth transition from one institution to another by minimizing duplication. Salus University Pennsylvania College of Optometry has a long history of articulation agreements with undergraduate institutions for affiliated optometry programs. Current Salus articulation agreements also include affiliations with other institutions for the physician assistant program.
In the fall, Salus entered into an MOU and an articulation agreement with Drexel University. The MOU pertains to activities based on mutual respect, equality and shared interests and is a general agreement that permits exploration of potential program collaborations. The articulation agreement is specific to the occupational therapy (OT) programs of the Salus University Department of Occupational Therapy (OT) and the Drexel University Health Sciences Department. On an annual basis, it allows Salus to offer a sequential degree program - BS (Drexel)/MSOT (Salus) - to “up to four select, high-achieving Drexel undergraduate students enrolled in the Health Sciences program at the Drexel College of Nursing and Health Professions.”
On December 15, President Michael H. Mittelman and Mrs. Indira M. Kameswaran, executive director of the Madras ENT Research Foundation (P) Ltd (MERF) and correspondent of its Institute of Speech and Hearing in Chennai, India, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). The University’s Osborne College of Audiology (OCA) and the MERF Institute will work together to advance audiology education in India. Present at the signing were Salus provost, Dr. Janice E. Scharre; OCA dean, Dr. Victor H. Bray; Dr. Giriji Sundar, director, OCA distance education; Dr. Melissa Vitek, director, International and Continuing Education, and Dr. Mohan Kameswaran, managing director and senior consultant, MERF Institute.
An MOU was signed on December 18 with Arcadia University that is designed to enhance academic and administrative collaboration between the two universities. The MOU, which is effective immediately, was signed by Salus president, Dr. Michael H. Mittelman, and Dr. Nicolette DeVille Christensen, president of Arcadia University. The signing took place on the Arcadia campus in Glenside with Provost Scharre and her Arcadia counterpart, Dr. Barbara Nodine, Salus Board of Trustees chair, Ms. Jo Surpin, and Mr. Christopher van Velde, Arcadia Board chair. Also present were members of the Salus President’s Council and faculty and staff from both universities.
Arcadia and Salus have been affiliated since 1986, when they signed an articulation agreement for optometry that remains in effect today. Serving a different purpose than the broader and more general MOU, the 1986 agreement permits Arcadia pre-optometry students to transfer to Salus after the completion of their third year at Arcadia and enter the optometry program at Salus Pennsylvania College of Optometry.
In speaking of the new MOU, Salus president Dr. Michael H. Mittelman said, “Our long-standing relationship is now even stronger. Arcadia, as a globally focused institution, shares many common goals with us. This is an ideal collaboration for our students, faculties and surrounding communities.”
Students and faculty at both universities will benefit from this collaboration. Arcadia students and faculty will have additional opportunities provided through the health science programs at Salus, while Salus students and faculty will be able to take advantage of Arcadia’s vast opportunities abroad. Additionally, this alliance opens the ability for additional advanced program tracks, such as the currently established optometry articulation agreement.