University of South Dakota

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Located in Vermillion, South Dakota, the University of South Dakota is a public, coeducational research institution which serves as the state’s flagship university. Self-described as a “big-time university with a small-college feel”, the University of South Dakota is one of six public institutions governed by the South Dakota Board of Regents. Established in 1862 by authorization of the first Legislature of the Dakota Territory, the University of South Dakota is the oldest institution of higher education in the state, though it took nearly 20 years after its initial authorization before classes opened due to lack of funding. Today, the University of South Dakota attracts students for the world-class academics and the fantastic hands-on experiences it has to offer.

Academic Programs

The mission of the University of South Dakota is to offer “undergraduate, graduate and professional programs within the South Dakota System of Higher Education,” serving as only public liberal arts university within the state of South Dakota. The University of South Dakota’s mission is “To be the best small, public flagship university in the nation built upon a liberal arts foundation” and the university is committed to “becoming a regional leader in diversity and inclusiveness initiatives and the practice of Inclusive Excellence.”

The University of South Dakota has been accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools since 1913 and is made up of several colleges and schools, including: the College of Arts & Sciences; Beacom School of Business; School of Education; College of Fine Arts; School of Health Sciences; Sanford School of Medicine; School of Law; and the University’s Graduate School. More than 200 undergraduate programs are offered as well as over 60 graduate programs, including top undergraduate fields of study in: Nursing, Business, Biology/Medical Biology, Health Science, Elementary Teacher Education, Criminal Justice, Kinesiology & Sport Science, Psychology, Accounting, Media/Journalism, Management, and History.

Student Life

The University of South Dakota has a total enrollment figure of more than 10,000, including over 7,000 undergraduate students. Situated on a gorgeous 274 acre campus, the University of South Dakota is located in the small community of Vermillion, nestled along the buffs in the southeast corner of the state, above the Missouri River. Vermillion serves a safe and welcoming community for University students and students have access to an abundance of cultural opportunities in town, in the nearby countryside, and in neighboring communities.

More than 120 student-led clubs and organizations exist on the University of South Dakota’s campus, including social, sport, religious, pre-professional and hobby groups. One of the University’s most cherished traditions is Dakota Days, South Dakota’s annual homecoming celebration. Also referred to as D-Day’s, the week-long event, which began in 1914 for the purpose of promoting “campus spirit and harmony”, attracts alumni back to campus and provides an outlet for current students to display creativity in planning and promoting the festivities. An NCAA Division I-A School, the University of South Dakota also offers an abundance of varsity athletic programs for both men and women, including basketball, cross country, golf, swimming & diving, track & field, and more.

Ready to start your journey?

Ready to start your journey?