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USD Nursing to Honor the Late Dr. Raymond Zakahi

Image Dr. Raymond Zakahi USD nursing will honor the late Dr. Raymond Zakahi and his family at a program in Pierre, on April 20.

PIERRE, S.D. -- The University of South Dakota Department of Nursing program in Pierre, South Dakota, will receive a generous gift in honor of the late Dr. Raymond J. Zakahi during an event at 1 p.m. Wednesday, April 20, at the USD Nursing facility at Capital University Center in Pierre. The program will include a presentation of thanks to the Zakahi family.

Zahaki practiced medicine as a general surgeon and family practitioner in Pierre from 1961 until his retirement in 1999. After his death in 2010, his wife, Karen Zakahi, and her family honored Dr. Zakahi’s devotion to health care by establishing and funding USD nursing scholarships to Pierre-area students. The Zakahi family also recently decided to underwrite the cost for a significant upgrade to the nursing program’s simulation facilities at Capital University Center. The upgrades help the University of South Dakota nursing program prepare for its transition to the new Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) nursing degree.

USD has offered nursing courses and degrees at locations around South Dakota since 1954 and in Pierre since 1989 at the associate degree level. The Pierre program will begin offering a BSN degree starting this fall. Other South Dakota campuses of the USD nursing program are located in Vermillion, Sioux Falls, Rapid City and Watertown.


USD’s School of Health Sciences is a national leader in interprofessional health sciences education. South Dakota’s comprehensive School of Health Sciences develops scholars, practitioners and leaders in health and human services, including addiction counselors, dental hygienists, health science practitioners, medical laboratory scientists, nurses, occupational therapists, physical therapists, physician assistants, public health practitioners and social workers.


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 84 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, Knudson 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.


Hanna DeLange
USD News