Our Program 

The South Dakota LEND Program is the South Dakota Leadership Education Excellence in Caring for Children with Neurodevelopmental and Related Disorders Program. We work to improve the health status of infants, children and adolescents with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities.

LEND provides a graduate-level traineeship and one year of specialized training, which focuses on the interdisciplinary training of professionals for leadership roles in the provision of health and related services to infants, children and adolescents with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities and their families. Our program augments graduate studies in the disciplines of: Audiology, child neurology, child psychiatry, developmental and behavioral pediatrics, health administration, medicine, nursing, school psychology, special education, speech-language pathology, occupational therapy, pediatric dentistry, pediatric gastroenterology, pediatric genetics, pediatric physical medicine and rehabilitation, physical therapy, psychology, public health, social work, and parents of children with special needs.

We work in collaboration with many organizations and institutions, including:

  • Sanford Children’s Hospital and Specialty Clinics
  • South Dakota Department of Health and South Dakota Title V Program
  • South Dakota Parent Connection
  • Sinte Gleska University; Rosebud Sioux Reservation
  • South Dakota State University, Department of Health & Nutritional Sciences
  • University of South Dakota
    * School of Arts and Sciences
           -Department of Clinical Psychology
           -Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders
    * School of Business
           -Department of Health Services Administration
    * School of Education
           -Department of School Psychology
           -Department of Special Education
    * School of Health Sciences
           -Department of Nursing
           -Department of Occupational Therapy
           -Department of Physical Therapy
           -Department of Social Work
  • Augustana University, Department of Education
  • Augustana University, Department of Genetic Counseling
  • Lifescape (Formerly Children’s Care Hospital and School)
  • Autism Behavioral Consulting

Specific Goals of the South Dakota LEND Program

  • To provide an excellent education program which will prepare its preservice trainees to assume clinical leadership roles dedicated to meeting the needs of children with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities in all settings where care may be provided (home, ambulatory care settings, managed care and office settings, community-based, and hospital health care facilities). This training will emphasize the provision of family oriented, culturally sensitive, interdisciplinary services.
  • To build the leadership capacity of its preservice trainees to guide public policy and health care practice in efficient, effective, evidence-based, comprehensive, family-centered, and culturally competent care for children with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities.
  • To enhance and expand the capacity of heath care providers in the state of South Dakota and the surrounding region to utilize and promote comprehensive, family-centered, culturally competent, community-based, interdisciplinary approaches to care for children with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities through the provision of continuing education and technical assistance.
  • To promote the development of improved systems of care through the pursuit of new partnerships and the expansion of existing relationships with governmental, educational and health care agencies which share the interest of neurodevelopmental disabilities and their families in South Dakota and the surrounding region.

The South Dakota LEND Program is supported by a grant from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), of the United States Department of Health and Human Services - grant number T73MC00037.

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