“To provide the means of instruction by the establishment of a school of pharmacy in which shall be taught those branches of knowledge essential to the education of an apothecary; to invite a spirit of pharmaceutical investigation and research…”
The original objectives of the University, drafted in 1821, were based on the traditional roles of the academy—teaching, research, and service. The proud legacy of University of the Sciences began when 68 Philadelphia apothecaries met in Carpenters’ Hall in 1821 to establish improved scientific standards and to train more competent apprentices and students. These visionaries sought to enhance their vocation, as well as protect public welfare. A year later, they organized and incorporated the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy (PCP), the first college of pharmacy in North America. Thus, education in the profession of pharmacy in the U.S. was born.
After its conception in 1821, the college began to grow in enrollment, curriculum, and stature. Although matriculation was originally limited to men, the college became coeducational in 1876. The college initially emphasized the biological and chemical sciences as mainstays of the curriculum in pharmacy but later instituted separate curricula in three other areas: bacteriology, biology, and chemistry.
In 1921, the name of the institution was changed to Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science, with state authorization to grant not only the baccalaureate degree, but also the master’s and doctorate in all four disciplines.
As the world of science continuously made advancements throughout the decades, the college evolved and expanded its curriculum to prepare students for the new wave of scientific breakthroughs. The college also enhanced the role of the humanities and social sciences in its science-based curricula. Primarily a commuter campus in its early days, the institution began to transform into one in which residential life and extracurricular activities played a larger role in student development.
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania approved the institution’s application for university status in February 1997. In recognition of the broad spectrum of new health and science programs introduced by the institution, the college changed its name to reflect the broader range of academic opportunities offered to its students. On July 1, 1998, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science officially unveiled its new identity as University of the Sciences in Philadelphia.
A brand update in 2010, on the eve of the University’s 190 th anniversary, refocused the institution’s messaging and logos. The overall name was simplified for marketing purposes to University of the Sciences in order to emphasize a national and global reach, while a new logo transitioned the USP acronym to USciences to address awareness issues. In addition, the tag line “Where science and healthcare converge” was adopted to define both what the University is and what it is not.