WATERTOWN, S.D. – A small crowd attended the first town meeting on South Dakota public higher education in Watertown last night. The meeting, hosted by the South Dakota Board of Regents, is one of four the Regents are holding across the state to give the public an opportunity to interact with the board and university presidents. Those attending, along with the regents board members, included the Presidents from SDSU, Dakota State and Northern State University. Regents President Bob Sutton said he wanted to end any misbelief there is a them versus us in higher education between the state’s universities and technical institutes. He said it’s no longer a case of whether you are a two-year or a four-year student.
Sutton says it will take an, “everyone on board” attitude at all of the state’s higher education institutions to ensure a goal of 65 percent of the state’s student base obtains a higher education degree by the year 2025.
Also presented at the meeting last night was information from a recent economic impact study that was co-sponsored by the South Dakota Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the regents. The data shows public universities are increasing the state’s domestic product by 2.66 billion dollars yearly. Similar meetings are planned in November for Sioux Falls, Mitchell, and Rapid City.