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The South Dakotan

Dear Alumni and Friends,

As I sit in my office writing to you, I am enjoying fresh spring air coming through my

window and the sounds of large equipment, clanging metal and the assorted beeps

and banging associated with construction—or as I like to think of it, the sounds of

progress. Just across the street from my office in the Wagner Center, the new Sports

Performance Enhancement Complex is being constructed. It is exciting to see the

progress being made each week and I can hardly wait for the opportunity to hear the

cheers of faithful Coyote fans in the new surroundings. Similar progress is happening

on the outdoor track and soccer complex along the Highway 50 bypass as you enter

Vermillion. We are so fortunate to have loyal alumni who give generously to support

projects like these. Whether your passion is athletics, arts or academics, there is a way

for you to be involved and I hope you will find a way to be engaged.

In this issue of the magazine, we introduce you to alumni who are leveraging their

USD educations to make a difference around the world. Whether it is addressing

challenges in remote villages in Kosovo, Mongolia and Tanzania, or playing a role

in addressing the ever evolving relations with the Soviets, you can be proud of your

fellow alumni. We are also very pleased to recognize the gift of Tom and Nancy

Gallagher in the establishment of the International Opportunity Fund, which will

open opportunities to students who would not otherwise be able to travel abroad to

further personal and educational experiences. Coincidentally, three USD students

have been named recipients of the prestigious Fulbright Scholarships. There have

been 36 USD students who have received Fulbrights since 1951, but it hasn’t been

since 1957 that there have been three recipients within a single year. We are very

proud of their accomplishments and very excited for the opportunities they have as a

result. It is a testament to their hard work and to the USD faculty who have prepared

them to compete on a national level.

To provide alumni and friends the opportunity to pursue life-long learning

and cultural experiences abroad, we have launched an international travel program.

We have filled our tour to England, Scotland and Ireland this summer, but there is

still room available to travel with the USD Alumni Association to Australia in

April 2016. Learn more and reserve your seat today at

Dakota Days 2015 is scheduled for October 2–3; please make plans to join us for this

homecoming to reconnect with your peers, to meet the fantastic students of today

and to share in the excitement of USD’s future!

With warm Coyote regards,

Kersten Johnson, ’87 B.A.

Executive Director

USD Alumni Association