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Sanford School of Medicine to host Pathways 6th National Conference

VERMILLION, S.D. -- The University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine will host the sixth annual Pathways Into Health (Pathways) National Conference, Oct. 10-12, at the Holiday Inn Rushmore Plaza in Rapid City, S.D.

Pathways Into Health is a grassroots collaboration of organizations and individuals whose focus is on increasing the number of American Indians/Alaska Natives trained as physicians, nurses and in other health care related fields as a means of addressing the health and health care disparities that occur in these populations.

This year’s conference, “Achieving Excellence, Harmony, and Balance: Communities Integrating Tradition and Translation,” will feature sessions dealing with cultural attunement, interprofessional education, pipeline activities, student engagement and health career development through the lifespan. Panels on Indian self-determination, the need for Native dentists, successful practices in engaging American Indians/Alaska Natives in health care professions and commentary by Native health professions students are scheduled.

Each day will feature a keynote presentation, including Don Warne, M.D., from North Dakota State University’s Master of Public Health program; Martin Brokenleg, Ph.D., will share his “Circle of Courage Model,” and Larry Roberts, M.Ed., will present the closing session, “Elders & Eldering = Reflections and Purpose.” Additional activities will include an awards dinner, poster presentations and a half-day cultural excursion touring relevant sites around the Black Hills.

A pre-conference research symposium on Tuesday, Oct. 9 will focus on health disparities research and model programs relating to the education of Pathways’ focus populations. Individual presentations by 15 regional and national researchers and program leaders across four areas (behavioral/mental health, chronic diseases, sexual health, innovations in health professions training and education) will provide a diverse series of options for participants. Jeffrey A. Henderson, M.D., president/CEO of the Black Hills Center for Native American Health, will deliver the keynote address, “A Case Study in American Indian/Alaska Native Health Equity.”

For questions about the conference, please contact Jerry Yutrzenka, associate professor of basic biomedical sciences and director of diversity affairs at the Sanford School of Medicine, at (605) 670-0163, (605) 677-5156 or email: Additional information is available at Registration for both the regular conference and the pre-conference is open and on-site registration will be available throughout the conference.


USD's Sanford School of Medicine is nationally known for excellence. With its award-winning curriculum, the school prepares medical students to practice in all fields of medicine and is particularly recognized and ranked for its reputation in family medicine and rural medicine. In addition to the M.D., it offers graduate degrees in basic biomedical science, sustains a vibrant and forward-looking research agenda, and is home to the interdisciplinary Center for Brain and Behavioral Research.


Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 202 undergraduate and 78 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 16:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 18 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

This material is available in an alternate format upon request. Please contact University Relations at 605-677-5759. If you are a person with a disability and need a special accommodation to fully participate in any university activity or event, please contact Disability Services at 605-677-6389 as soon as possible, but no later than 48 hours before the event, so that appropriate arrangements may be made.


Hanna DeLange
USD News