A Letter from the Dean
Welcome to the second issue of
South Dakotan HEALTH
, the magazine of
the University of South Dakota’s School of Health Sciences. We are excited for the
opportunity to once again share our stories with you. With news briefs and features
covering a wide array of topics, the magazine highlights the very best of who we are
and what we do within the School of Health Sciences.
Our cover story features a look back at the strong academic and professional
histories of the Departments of Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy, which
both celebrate their 20th anniversaries this year.
Our second major story explores the ground-breaking interdisciplinary research
that Moses Ikiugu, Ph.D., professor of occupational therapy, and Lee Baugh, Ph.D.,
assistant professor of basic biomedical sciences, are conducting. Their investigation,
which utilizes the latest fMRI brain imaging technology, examines how we derive
meaning from the activities we complete every day and could change the way we look
at maintaining our health and wellness.
Rounding out the features is an examination of the Fast Track program, which
allows nurses who are already in the working world to gain additional education and
credentials quickly and conveniently, opening more avenues for career advancement.
With so many compelling stories close at hand, it is often difficult to narrow the
scope of topics for this, our annual magazine. If you have comments or suggestions,
based on the content you see in the pages ahead, I encourage you to contact us at
We value your support, insights and readership.
Michael Lawler, Ph.D., M.S.W.
Dean, University of South Dakota School of Health Sciences
Dear Alumni, Students, Faculty and Friends,
To be a nationally-recognized leader in interprofessional health sciences education.
The School of Health Sciences develops scholars, practitioners and leaders in health and
human services, meeting the workforce needs of South Dakota, the region and beyond.