Kent announces partnership with Podiatric college

Rex Santus

Kent State University and the Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine plan to merge as early as this summer, according to a Kent State press release.

The Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine was founded in 1916. It is the only accredited podiatry school in Ohio. Podiatry is a branch of medical study devoted to the foot, ankle and lower leg.

President Lester Lefton said Kent State is “moving quickly with this acquisition.”

“We’ve got great students,” Lefton said. “One of the advantages to the podiatry school in joining the Kent State community is there would be students like you who might be interested in a health career and haven’t thought about podiatry before.”

Both universities are working together to ensure a smooth merger.

“We are putting careful thought into this transition process to make sure there are no bottlenecks when the college formally becomes a part of Kent State,” said Timothy Chandler, senior associate provost at Kent State. “Staff members from both institutions are working around the clock to make this successful.”

The partnership between the two institutions aims to offer more options to students enrolled in podiatry programs, who will be able to obtain a dual degree.

“This is a great opportunity for the OCPM community to be involved with a high-caliber institution,” said Thomas Melillo, president of the Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine. “OCPM will be the only podiatric college associated with a state university, which gives our students an advantage in higher education.”

The curriculum will remain the same for current students of podiatry, but “with this partnership, it will offer more advantageous resources and opportunities for the podiatric medical student.”

Lefton said the merger will be good for Kent State because there have been no difficulties in coordinating with the Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine.

“We’re not spending any money to get the college of podiatry,” Lefton said. “They’re bringing money to the table. They want to affiliate with a nationally ranked research university.”

The two universities released a joint statement Nov. 1, 2011, to announce the pending merger.

Contact Rex Santus at [email protected] .