Jan 27, 2020  
2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog 
2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Centers, Institutes and Museums

Click on the following links for information:

Center for Academic Engagement (CAE)


Sarah Wittmuss
Academic Commons 103
(605) 677-6338

The Center for Academic Engagement is the central point of contact for students interested in ways to enrich their academic experience while strengthening their qualifications for employment and/or graduate study. The mission of the Center is to assist students in identifying and realizing opportunities for quality experiential learning. These activities help students develop essential skills, hone their interests, and become important contributors to the greater community. The Center houses a number of resources to further the academic engagement of students:

  • Service-Learning: Provides resources to students, faculty, and community members interested in connecting coursework to community issues.

  • Undergraduate Research & Creative Scholarship: Assists students in their efforts to find and become involved in undergraduate research or creative pursuits.

  • Study Abroad: Provides information for students interested in global learning opportunities.

  • Civic Engagement: Assists students interested in enhancing the civic life of our communities through their participation in political and civic processes.

  • Nationally Competitive Scholarships: Guides and directs students in their applications for scholarships such as the Rhodes, Truman, Fulbright, Goldwater, Jack Kent Cooke, and the like.

  • National Student Exchange: Provides information on NSE programs that allow students to study at nearly 200 campuses in the United States, U.S. territories, and Canada.

  • Experiential Learning & Internships: Presents information about nondepartmental academic programs available throughout the world.  

Disaster Mental Health Institute (DMHI)


Gerard A. Jacobs, Director
South Dakota Union 114

The Disaster Mental Health Institute’s mission is the promotion, development, and application of both practice and research in disaster psychology. Through the USD Department of Psychology the DMHI offers an undergraduate Minor in Disaster Response and for psychology majors a Specialization in Disaster Response (see the psychology department’s section of this catalog for details). These programs help students learn how to serve their communities in times of disaster, and include real-world practicum experiences in preparing for or responding to disasters with American Red Cross Disaster Services. DMHI faculty are engaged in cutting-edge research and disaster preparedness and response, both in the United States and around the world, and they bring that knowledge and experience into the classroom. Students learn directly from faculty who are shaping the future of the field world-wide.

Freedom Forum’s Al Neuharth Media Center


Jack Marsh, Executive Director, Al Neuharth Media Center
President and COO, Freedom Forum Diversity Institute
555 Dakota Street - Inman Quad
Vermillion, SD  57069

Janine Harris, Manager, Al Neuharth Media Center


The Al Neuharth Media Center is named for Al Neuharth, founder of Freedom Forum and USA TODAY, a 1950 USD journalism graduate. Freedom Forum is a nonpartisan foundation dedicated to free press, free speech and free spirit for all people. It also operates the Newseum in Washington, D.C., and the John Seigenthaler Center at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn.

The Al Neuharth Media Center is home to Freedom Forum’s South Dakota offices and programs, to South Dakota Public Broadcasting, the USD Department of Contemporary Media and Journalism, and all USD student media, including The Volante, which Neuharth edited as a student in 1949.

At USD, Freedom Forum focuses on journalism education, the First Amendment and diversity in newsroom staffing, with an emphasis on American Indians. Freedom Forum and USD co-sponsor the Al Neuharth Award for Excellence in the Media, presented annually since 1989. Freedom Forum supports free-press rights for students by providing The Volante staff with its modern facilities, a professional adviser, training opportunities and the Al Neuharth Scholarships for Excellence in Journalism. Freedom Forum also runs the American Indian Journalism Institute at USD, funds the annual Crazy Horse Journalism Workshop at Crazy Horse Memorial in the Black Hills, and promotes excellence in journalism through teaching, conferences, internships and other scholarships.

The building is operated jointly by the Freedom Forum and The University. Conference and meeting facilities at the Al Neuharth Media Center are available for booking by university departments, organizations and programs. The refurbished building, completed in 2003 with major funding from Freedom Forum and the University of South Dakota Foundation, is a popular venue for workshops, training classes, lectures, luncheon meetings and dinner programs. The state-of-the-art Freedom Forum Conference Room accommodates up to 120 for a sit-down meal and about 150 people for auditorium-style seating. The Freedom Forum Board Room is designed for smaller gatherings of about a dozen people. The center’s spectacular two-story Freedom Forum Concourse is ideal for receptions and social gatherings. For reservations and inquiries, contact Darlene Schieffer at the Al Neuharth Media Center, 605-677-3114, dlschief@usd.edu.

Government Research Bureau (GRB)


Shane Nordyke, Acting Director
Farber House 101

USD’s Government Research Bureau provides expert research design and analysis services to stakeholders at every stage of the public policy and administration process. The GRB has a long history of providing services to support South Dakota’s governments, nonprofits, and businesses. It leverages the research talent at The University of South Dakota to provide its clients with customized research design and analysis solutions. The GRB is committed to creating an environment that is conducive to producing the highest quality work for the GRB’s clients while also building a place where USD’s students and faculty can contribute to the well-being of the state and region.

Institute of American Indian Studies


Dakota Hall, Room 17

Established in 1955 by the South Dakota State Legislature [SDCL 13-57-3.2], the Institute of American Indian Studies develops and promotes American Indian-related projects, activities, and programs at The University of South Dakota in collaboration with the Department of Native Studies, the Office of Student Life, TRiO Programs, the Native American Cultural Center, Native Students’ Support Services, Building Bridges, The Tiospaye Student Council, USD Program Council, the Oscar Howe Memorial Association, and others. These projects include on- and off-campus programs to promote education and awareness of American Indian culture and issues and strengthening relations with tribes, tribal colleges, and other appropriate American Indian organizations in the state, region, and beyond.

The Institute provides administrative support and coordination for the American Indian Alumni Chapter of the USD Alumni Association. The goals of the Alumni Chapter are to identify, involve, and promote interest in scholarships and other support from American Indian graduates and alumni to assist needs of currently enrolled Native students by building a base for connections among Native graduates and current faculty members, staff, and students.

The Dr. Joseph H. Cash Memorial Library contains books, photographs, films, and videos on North American frontier history with special emphases on American Indians, the mining industry, and western literature. The collection is a gift of Dr. Cash’s family to honor his service to The University as Professor of History, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Director of the Institute of American Indian Studies. Located in the Oral History Center, Dakota Hall, Room 12, the library is available for in-house use by students, faculty members, and researchers.

Missouri River Institute (MRI)


Tim Cowman, Director
Missouri River Institute

The University of South Dakota established the Missouri River Institute to develop and promote research, education, and public awareness related to the natural and cultural resources of the Missouri River Basin. The MRI promotes interdisciplinary research on the Missouri River by contributing faculty, students, equipment, and funding resources toward research projects that address issues related to the Missouri River system. The MRI is developing new curricula and academic programs for introductory and advanced river studies at USD. This includes undergraduate courses and graduate programs centered on riverine and environmental studies. The MRI is also active in outreach projects to promote understanding of and interaction with the river.

USD is located near the last remaining unmodified portion of the Missouri River downstream of the dams, a 59-mile section of river from Gavin’s Point Dam to Ponca State Park, Nebraska. USD is the only major research university capable of integrating river research within campus life on a daily basis. Under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act, the federal government declared this particular section the Missouri National Recreational River in 1978. It therefore provides a natural field laboratory for research, teaching and outreach activities. The Missouri National Recreational River Resource and Education Center is just 30 miles from campus at Ponca State Park and is available for use by The University community.

The Missouri River Institute gives students a unique opportunity to get involved directly in the Missouri River’s natural and cultural heritage. Direct inquires about research opportunities to the Director of the Institute, the Vice President for Research, the Student Engagement Action Coordinator, or to individual faculty mentors.

 National Music Museum


Margaret Downie Banks, Interim Executive Director


The National Music Museum is one of the great museums of its kind in the world. Housed in a lovingly restored Carnegie library building, the NMM’s ever-growing collections of more than 15,000 American, European, and non-Western instruments from virtually all cultures and historical periods are the most inclusive in the world. Although music museums are found in many cities, the comprehensive nature of the collections at the NMM makes it the premier institution of its kind. Included are many of the earliest, best preserved, and historically most important musical instruments known to survive, dating back to as early as the 16th century. All reflect the ageless, universal power of human ingenuity and imagination. Concerts are presented amid the intimacy and superb acoustics of the Arne B. Larson Concert Hall, and popular brown bag lunch programs explore other facets of the NMM’s diverse collections. Self-guided multi-media tours allow visitors to hear, as well as see, some 1,100 instruments that are on exhibit in nine galleries. Group tours must be arranged two weeks in advance.

The NMM’s Center for Study of the History of Musical Instruments is the leading research institution of its kind and hosts national/international conferences that attract scholars from around the world. In addition to the musical instruments, the NMM’s resources include a specialized library and extensive archives, with special emphasis on the documentation of the American music industry. NMM faculty and staff are leading scholars in the field, publish widely, and provide international leadership. Graduates of the University’s graduate program with a concentration in the history of musical instruments now hold positions with other major musical instrument collections, museums, and libraries, both in the U.S.A. and abroad.

South Dakota Oral History Center


Dakota Hall, Room 12

The South Dakota Oral History Center houses two major collections of audio interviews relating to South Dakota history and to American Indian experiences. The American Indian Research Project is composed of approximately 2,300 tapes addressing experiences of Dakota/Lakota/Nakota peoples and other tribes of the Northern Plains. Topics range from ancient legends and traditional religious beliefs to recent political and social views reflecting the American Indian way of life. The South Dakota Oral History Project contains almost 3,500 recorded interviews covering myriad aspects in South Dakota history. Interviews in both projects were collected beginning in the 1960s, and oral history projects continue today. A valuable resource for students and researchers, the Center, with its 5,800 interviews, is the largest collection of its kind in the country and is located in Room 12, Dakota Hall. Appointments are appreciated and can be made by calling or emailing the Center.

The Dr. Joseph H. Cash Memorial Library contains books, photographs, films, and videos on North American frontier history with special emphases on American Indians, the mining industry, and western literature. The collection is a gift of Dr. Cash’s family to honor his service to The University as Professor of History, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and Director of the Institute of American Indian Studies. Located in the Oral History Center, Dakota Hall, Room 12, the library is available for in-house use by students, faculty members, and researchers.

W.H. Over Museum


L.E. Bradley, Director
1110 Ratingen St.
Vermillion, SD 57069

The mission of the W. H. Over Museum operated by a privatized non-profit, all volunteer organization, is to collect, preserve, document, exhibit, research, study, and interpret objects relating to natural and cultural history, primarily in South Dakota; and to provide interpretive exhibitions, educational programs, publications and other appropriate means of conveying an understanding and appreciation of this region.

W.O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership


William D. Richardson, Director
Elizabeth T. Smith, Associate Director
Matthew R. Fairholm, Coordinator of Leadership Studies
Shane Nordyke, Acting Director of Government Research Bureau
Cheryl Hovorka, Program Assistant
116 Dakota Hall
(605) 677-5702
William.Richardson@usd.edu, Cheryl.Hovorka@usd.edu 

The South Dakota Board of Regents established the W. O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership in the fall of 1997 as a Center of Excellence. The Center is housed within the Department of Political Science and offers a minor in Civic Leadership Studies. The term “civic” was chosen to emphasize that the Center’s focus is not narrowly governmental but rather broadly inclusive of all aspects of our lives together as citizens of a community, state, nation, and world. The mission of the Center is to prepare students and help communities to face difficult public problems in a manner consistent with constitutional values. The Center fosters responsible and ethical leadership through education, service, and scholarship in the public interest.

The W.O. Farber Center for Civic Leadership was founded on the belief that there is leadership within every person. Its initiative stresses the importance of principled leadership based on core values and emphasizes leadership as a process, not just a position. Viewed in this way, leadership requires responsible action of individuals in every part of society-not simply those in formal leadership roles.