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USD School of Education Hosted Virtual Teacher Pathways Event for High School Students

Drone photo of Old Main with a sunset in the background. The USD School of Education hosted a virtual event as part of the Culturally Responsive Teacher Pathway program Oct. 23.

VERMILLION, S.D. – The University of South Dakota School of Education hosted their third Culturally Responsive Teacher Pathway event for Sioux Falls high school students Friday, Oct. 23. This year, the event was held online.

The Teacher Pathway program is a partnership between the USD School of Education and the Sioux Falls School District that is designed to introduce high school students to the teaching profession and culturally responsive practices. One aspect of the program allows them to experience a day-in-the-life of a USD education major.

“We have greatly appreciated the work of April Lee and the USD School of Education,” said James Nold, Ed.D., assistant superintendent of the Sioux Falls School District. “During this time of COVID-19, students have been very restricted in their ability to be on college campuses, so USD has worked to provide services to our potential future teachers by bringing the campus to them. Partnerships like this benefit everyone but especially benefit students the most during these difficult times.”

Students were able to create their own schedule by choosing from nine different sessions to attend virtually. All participants joined the welcome from Interim Dean Amy Schweinle, Ph.D., and the discussion “Equity in Education,” led by Assistant Professor Dyanis Popova, Ph.D.

Other session topics included technology in education, counseling, sport management, USD admissions and dual credit and discussions with the Center for Diversity and Community and the Native American Culture Center. Students also participated in a virtual visit of USD’s campus with two student ambassadors.

“We had to get creative in delivery this year, with a virtual visit due to COVID-19, but it was important to give students the opportunity to experience USD and the School of Education, to see what college is really like,” said Schweinle.

This was the first year the School of Education was able to offer scholarships to fund college credits.

“We are grateful to donors for the opportunity to support students with needs-based scholarships to fund college credits during high school. These scholarships open doors for more students in our region. We hope to broaden this opportunity each year,” Schweinle said.

“This year, the pathway program was truly a collaborative effort,” said April Lee, education recruiter and coordinator of the Teacher Pathway program. “The whole pathway program is about building relationships, and it starts with Dr. Nold, the Sioux Falls teachers, the USD faculty and staff and the students. We are thankful for another successful campus visit event and look forward to completing another triumphant year of the pathway program.”


USD's School of Education is transformative in preparing students both inside and outside the classroom. Its research- and practitioner-based programs train future educators, counselors, leaders, fitness and sport-related professionals for successful careers. The school focuses on a comprehensive learning experience, lifelong learning and developing professionals grounded in best practice. The school’s divisions include counseling and psychology, curriculum and instruction, educational leadership, kinesiology and sport management, and teacher residency and education.


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