Dear Alumni and Friends
It has been a year since I took the reins as the interim chair
and now chair of the Department of Nursing. Throughout that
time—and true to USD Nursing’s commitment to excellence—
changes have occurred rapidly. I’d like to take this opportunity to
reflect on our past, celebrate our present and provide a window into
our future.
This edition of our magazine reflects upon our past by
recognizing our history. USD Nursing’s program started in 1954
as a baccalaureate degree program and was changed to an associate
degree program in 1961. The first students were admitted to the
two-year nursing program in the fall of 1962, which means 2012
marks the 50th year USD Nursing has had an associate degree
program. This issue applauds a few of the many graduates from
throughout these five decades, highlights their accomplishments
and explores their perspectives on the state of nursing—then, now
and into the future. While we cannot highlight all of our graduates, our hope is that the glimpses
we provide into their achievements will illustrate the impact our graduates have had in the state and
As we turn our attention to the present and future, we see that USD is responding to the Institute
of Medicine’s (IOM) report, “The Future of Nursing: Leading Change, Advancing Health,” which
calls for a transformation of nursing in the coming decades. Articles contained within this issue
highlight our response to various components of this initiative. Certainly, the admittance of the first
class of R.N.-B.S.N. students in fall 2011 and their upcoming graduation in December 2012 is one to
which we want to draw attention.
Another significant highlight is the addition of the new four-year B.S.N. program. USD will
begin admitting our first cohort into the nursing major in Vermillion and Sioux Falls in the fall
semester of 2013. Rapid City will follow with their first cohort in the fall of 2014. We are poised to
make a state and national mark for our part in increasing the percentages of B.S.N. nurses in the state
by adding to the goal of 80 percent B.S.N. nurses in South Dakota.
Nursing is critical to patients throughout the nation and USD Nursing is answering the call to
provide a sound foundational curriculum that will enable our graduates to apply clinical judgment,
systems thinking, leadership and evidence-based practice while communicating as members of
interprofessional teams. I am excited to be continuing this proud tradition.
Carla Dieter, Ed.D., R.N., F.N.P.-B.C.
Chair, USD Nursing
a message from the chair
| USD Nursing