Federal higher education data from fall 2014 showed that 1,433 South Dakota students went to out-of-state colleges and universities as freshmen, while 2,658 non-residents were drawn to South Dakota institutions during the same term, including 450 to the University of South Dakota. That is a net gain to South Dakota of 1,225 students.

This is good news for South Dakota, said Mike Rush, executive director and CEO for regents. “The ability to attract and retain college-educated workers often brings lasting economic and social benefits to a state,” said Rush. “That’s why states typically aspire to be ‘in the black’ with respect to the interstate exchange of college students. We are glad to be in that column.”

Migration patterns of college students have shown consistent and dramatic improvement in South Dakota over the past decade. The import/export data is examined every two years by Board of Regents’ staff and show that South Dakota has been a net importer of college students since 2004.

The freshmen migration analysis can be found on the Board of Regents website.

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