From the University President


Welcome to South Dakota State University!

The students joining us in 2012 will see the transformation of the university’s residential environment from a front-row seat. You will watch the development of the Jackrabbit Grove residence halls and the expansion of the dining services in the University Student Union, ultimately finishing the planned on-campus neighborhood for freshmen and sophomores.

During your time at State:

• You and your friends may be among the first group of students to live in the new Jackrabbit Grove halls;

• You likely will be among the first students to eat in the expanded Union;

• You will be among the first students to utilize the McCrory Gardens Educational and Visitors Center, scheduled for dedication this summer; and

• Someone you know will sit in the first classes taught in the completed Daktronics Engineering Hall west wing, dedicated this last April.

You will be a first-year student here when the SDSU Foundation completes its comprehensive fund-raising campaign launched in 2007. The $200 million goal makes it the largest effort of its type for higher education in South Dakota. Contributions to the “It Starts with State” campaign — from generous alumni, friends, faculty and staff — will fund scholarships for students, already have provided spaces for teaching and learning, and will continue to support outstanding faculty work.

You also will cheer for your fellow students who represent the Jackrabbits in NCAA Division I athletics competition. In the past five years SDSU teams have qualified for Division I post-season competition in football, volleyball, men’s basketball and women’s basketball.

Today’s State looks substantially different than it did when I was a student. In fact, it has changed noticeably since I returned here as president nearly six years ago.

The Student Wellness Center provides 74,000 square feet of recreational space. The Avera Health and Science Center opened as a state-of-the-art teaching and research facility for pharmacy and chemistry programs. Donors have funded the Daktronics Engineering Hall and provided most of the resources for a new dairy processing plant and Dairy Bar retail shop. Three residential buildings — Abbott, Spencer and Thorne — became home to students in fall 2010, shortly before our last addition to the Union was opened to the public.

It’s easy to understand why people connected to SDSU frequently tell others that it’s a great day to be a Jackrabbit! I couldn’t agree more. Welcome again to South Dakota State University!

David L. Chicoine, Ph.D.


Class of 1969