Samuel Merritt University

Oakland CA 94609
United States

Originally founded in 1909, Samuel Merritt University (SMU) is a fully accredited health sciences institution located in Oakland, California. The University offers degrees in nursing, occupational therapy, physical therapy, physician assistant, and podiatric medicine. Samuel Merritt University is an affiliate of Sutter Health and Alta Bates Summit Medical Center.

  • Student enrollment is over 1,400, with campuses in Oakland, Sacramento, San Francisco and San Mateo. The University strives to reflect the community it serves by recruiting students with a variety of ethnic, cultural, and economic backgrounds.


  • Samuel Merritt has a strong reputation for personalized instruction because of its outstanding faculty, who bring impressive academic and clinical backgrounds to life-long learning, and a deep commitment to students and to the community.
  • Due to the University‚Äôs reputation for academic and clinical excellence, its graduates are heavily recruited, and have one of the highest rates of employment within one year of graduation.
  • Samuel Merritt University is the largest source of new registered nurses in California. The University is also the largest provider of physical and occupational therapists, physician assistants and podiatric physicians in the greater East Bay.
  • Samuel Merritt University graduates' passing scores on licensure and certification exams exceed state and national rates.
  • Samuel Merritt University offers two clinical doctoral programs, including podiatric medicine and physical therapy. A doctor is nursing practice degree will enroll its first class in January 2011 pending approval by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Samuel Merritt University educates students to become highly skilled and compassionate healthcare professionals who positively transform the experience of care in diverse communities.samuel_merritt_university3.jpg

Samuel Merritt University is recognized as a premier health sciences institution. Expert faculty and staff shape an inclusive learning environment where students experience best teaching practices and state-of-the-art learning approaches. The University selects and supports students who flourish in its rigorous academic programs, learn to practice expertly, and pass licensure or certification examinations on first attempt.


The philosophy of teaching and learning at Samuel Merritt University consist of a system of beliefs and values about the partnership between faculty and students in the teaching and learning process. The philosophy is directed toward the preparation of healthcare practitioners whose practice is planned and coordinated around the unique qualities of each person served. The philosophy requires that SMU graduates use sound reasoning which incorporates the current best evidence, clinical expertise, and the preference of the people served.samuel_merritt_university2.jpg

Programs, curricula, and courses are designed to values active, experiential learning and collegial, scholarly, and effective interaction among students and faculty. We believe that clinical and practical applications, grounded in the basic sciences, social sciences, and humanities, provide a critical foundation for learning in the health professions.

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