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Old Main through the trees on the University of South Dakota campus

Our Mission

The University of South Dakota offers undergraduate, graduate and professional programs within the South Dakota System of Higher Education. As the oldest university in the state, the University of South Dakota serves as the flagship and the only public liberal arts university in the state.

Vision and Values

The University of South Dakota is regionally acclaimed and nationally recognized as a high-quality public liberal arts university with South Dakota’s only schools of law, medicine and business. We are recognized for the quality of our faculty. Their excellent teaching, effective service and innovative research are valued at USD. Our faculty are dedicated, experts in their fields and accessible to our students. USD educates leaders of communities, states and nations.

Student Experience Focused

Our students are engaged, thoughtful, and well-prepared for a global and complex world. The experience in and out of the classroom is robust, experiential, and practical. Lives are enhanced and changed by the breadth of experiences we provide.

Responsible Stewards

We strive to make a USD education affordable to every qualified student by operating efficiently and effectively with high quality standards to minimize financial barriers to a life-changing experience.


We communicate frequently with our stakeholders, both internal and external. Our communication processes are informative, agile, and transparent. Our brand and identity are authentic, clear, and understood by all our stakeholders. People know who we are, what we do, and the connections we make to serve the citizens of South Dakota, members of tribal nations, the region, and the world.

Value Our Community

We are community partners and neighbors who value the strength of our community. We invest in our people and strive to achieve appropriate levels of compensation and recognition. We value our employees and invest in their professional development. All employees play an important role in creating the USD experience.


We embrace diversity as one of our strengths and strive to make inclusive excellence a reality. We are proud of the inclusive, equitable, and caring culture we continue to create. People feel welcome here.

Resource Custodians

We have a process for modernizing and upgrading our facilities so they can be fully utilized by our students, faculty, staff, and community. We leverage our technology resources to provide a flexible and adaptable learning and research experience.

Highest Integrity

We are seen as a trusted partner by those with whom we collaborate and live up to the high expectations of South Dakota, tribal nations, and other stakeholders. We are optimistic and excited about the future we will create.