Carter Liotta, OD: The Only PCO Alumnus with a Super Bowl Ring
“I’m probably the only Salus alumnus who has a Super Bowl ring,” Dr. Carter Liotta said about his prized possession from the Philadelphia Eagles notable win over the New England Patriots in SuperBowl LII. That’s how Dr. Liotta started the conversation about his experiences since graduating from the Pennsylvania College of Optometry (PCO) in 2003.
The summer following graduation, PCO assistant professor Dr. Gale Orlansky was the project coordinator for PCO and the Philadelphia School District in a joint effort to meet the vision care needs of Philadelphia’s public school children. “We went into the public schools that were in session for summer school and provided vision screenings for those children,” she said. “I asked several new doctors to be an integral part of this project, and Dr. Liotta signed up.”
Simultaneously, during the four- to six-week project, PCO was also working for a short time with the charitable wing of the Philadelphia Eagles – specifically the Eagles Charitable Foundation and its signature program, the Eagles Eye Mobile – and through this relationship, Dr. Liotta made some connections. Soon after, he segued into working for the Eagles Eye Mobile and St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children and has been ever since.
During the academic year, he and his team - which includes himself and three multipurpose certified paraoptometrics - are combing the schools within Philadelphia and its suburbs to provide vision care to children in need, much like The Eye Institute of Salus University’s Looking Out for Kids school vision programs.
The Eagles Eye Mobile, Wills Eye Hospital and The Eye Institute collectively provide care to thousands of Philadelphia’s children. And, it is pretty widely known that if you improve a child’s vision, you can improve the child’s ability to learn - this is the reason behind the effort to scale.