Greetings from Vermillion. Winter is offering a much needed reprieve with warmer temperatures that will melt the snowy leftovers from January. Things are heating up in the classroom as well with the spring semester in full swing. Our seven new faculty members are settling in to campus life and contributing their expertise to dedicated classroom learning, research and service work. Our recruiting season is going well with many high-achieving high school students already committed to attending the Beacom School of Business in the fall.
We had an active presence in Pierre this semester. On Jan. 31, Mike Allgrunn, Ph.D., presented the results of the Economic Impact of the South Dakota Public University System study. The research was sponsored by the South Dakota Board of Regents and the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The research was accomplished in the Beacom School of Business and confirms the significance of the public universities in South Dakota. Our universities generate $2.66 billion a year in annual economic impact within the state, from a state investment of $197 million.
On Feb. 2, thirty-five students traveled to Pierre with six faculty and staff to participate in USD Day at the statehouse. These students interacted with Gov. Daugaard, Lt. Gov. Michels, and Speaker of the House Mickelson. This trip reinforced the impact higher education has on the growing economy in our state and surrounding region and reminded our legislators that the flagship business school in South Dakota is engaged, interested, and involved in their work.
I have enjoyed escaping a bit of the winter chill to connect with alumni around the country. Last month I had the opportunity to meet with a gathering of alumni and friends in Naples, Florida. I am struck by the many paths people take to find professional success and honored that so many of these paths begin at the Beacom School of Business.
Venky Venkatachalam, Ph.D.
Dean, Beacom School of Business