Jul 24, 2024  
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Health Sciences Department

Interim Chair: Ann Brunick
Program Director: Barbara Brockevelt, Ph.D., OTR/L, FAOTA

Lee Medical Building #302
Phone: 605-658-6500
Fax: 605-677-6745




Patti Berg-Poppe, PT, Ph.D., NCS, University of South Dakota.
Barbara Brockevelt, Ph.D., M.A., OTR/L, FAOTA, Nova Southeastern University.
Archana Chatterjee, M.D., Ph.D., University of Nebraska Medical Center.
Barbara Goodman, Ph.D., University of Minnesota.
Moses Ikiugu, Ph.D., OTR/L, Texas Woman’s University.
Joy Karges, PT, Ed.D., M.S., CLT, University of South Dakota.
Denyelle Baete Kenyon, Ph.D., University of Arizona.
Mary Nettleman, M.D., M.S., M.A.C.P., Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

Associate Professors:

Haifa AbouSamra, Ph.D., MSIM, RN-NIC-CN, South Dakota State University.
Kelly Bass, D.S.W., M.S.W., University of Tennessee.
Becca Jordre, PT, D.P.T., GCS, Duke University.
Jay Memmott, Ph.D., M.S.W., LCSW, University of Kansas.
Wade Nilson, Ed.D., MPAS, PA-C, Bethel University.
Ranelle Nissen, Ph.D., OTR/L, Texas Woman’s University.
Soonhee Roh, Ph.D., M.S.W., LMSW, University of New York University.
William Schweinle III, Ph.D., University of Texas.

Assistant Professors:

Amanda Adamson, PT, D.P.T., OCS, University of South Dakota.
Musheera AnisAbellatif, Ph.D., M.A., University of South Dakota.
Shana Cerny, O.T.D., M.S., OTR/L, Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions.
Lucien Costley, Ph.D., Seton Hall University.
Mackenzie Feldhacker, O.T.D., OTR/L, Creighton University.
John Korkow, Ph.D., LAC, SAP, University of South Dakota.
Sabina Kupershmidt, Ph.D., Vanderbilt University.
Whitney Lucas Molitor, O.T.D., M.S., OTR/L, BCG, University of South Dakota.
Jessica McHugh, Ph.D., M.S., OTR/L, Texas Woman’s University.
Gerald McGraw, Ed.D., MPAS, MBA, PA, Webster University.
Allison Naber, O.T.D., OTR/L, University of South Dakota.
Kimberly Nerud, Ph.D., South Dakota State University.
Brandon Ness, PT, D.P.T. Mayo School of Health Sciences.
Diane Sevening, Ed.D., LAC, University of South Dakota.
Hanz Tao, PT, D.P.T., CSCS, University of Colorado.
Jean Yockey, Ph.D., FNP, RN, CNE, University of Northern Colorado.
Kory Zimney, PT, D.P.T, CSMT, Des Moines University.

Senior Lecturer:

Wallace Jackmon, Ph.D., LP, LCSW-PIP, Capella University.
Debra Norris, Ed.D., MSW, LCSW, University of South Dakota.


Mary Merrigan, Ed.D., LPC, LAC, University of South Dakota.
Amy Nelson, O.T.D., University of South Dakota.

Adjunct Lecturers:

Ellie Brooks, Ph.D., University of Tennessee.
John Seabolt, Ed.D., University of Kentucky.


Health Sciences (Ph.D.)  

Program Description:

The interprofessional Ph.D. in Health Sciences is designed to prepare practicing health care professionals to assume leadership roles in academia, research, and/or health and human services practice settings.  Designed for working professionals, features of the program include:

  • Up to 36 credits from USD or 30 credits from another regionally-accredited institution may be considered for transfer from a master’s or professional doctorate, subject to approval by the advisor and Graduate Committee.
  • Core curriculum comprised of four content threads: Practice, Scholarship (including dissertation), Teaching, and Leadership;
  • Ability to tailor learning to meet individual career aspirations and research interests through elective coursework, projects completed within courses, and the dissertation;
  • Online course delivery with limited expectations for face-to-face contact. Resident experiences include an initial orientation, a one-week Dissertation Boot Camp, and defense of the dissertation;
  • With advisor approval, dissertation research can be completed off-campus in most instances.


  1. Completed Graduate Application form found at: https://www.usd.edu/graduate-school/apply-now and a non-refundable application fee of $35.
  2. Official transcript(s) verifying receipt of an undergraduate degree and previous graduate credit (in English or with translation) must accompany an application. Official transcript of all academic work at the undergraduate and graduate levels are required for international students. The USD Graduate School and/or academic units retain the right to require credential evaluations from organizations, such as Educational Credential Evaluators/World Education Services (ECE/WES), for a student if such an evaluation is deemed necessary.
  3. Completion of a Master’s or higher degree in health or human services related field from an institution with full regional accreditation for that degree. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.4 or better on that conferred degree, based on a 4.0 scale. Graduate programs may admit students on provisional status per University policy.
  4. Applicants with degrees from countries other than the United States who have obtained an undergraduate or graduate degree from a regionally accredited American college or university are not required to submit an approved English proficiency exam score. For all other applicants, a minimum score of 79 on the Internet-Based TOEFL (iBT) or 550 on the Paper-Based TOEFL (PBT), a minimum IELTS score of 6.0, or a minimum PTE score of 53 is required for graduate admission. Applicants from or who have obtained an undergraduate or graduate degree from English-speaking countries are not required to submit an approved English proficiency exam score if their academic records after review indicate that English was the classroom language for their schoolwork.

Additional Program Admission Requirements:

  1. Three (3) professional letters of recommendation are required.
  2. Successful completion of a criminal background check upon acceptance.

Application Deadline: February 15th 

Top candidates who meet the application deadline may be selected for Phase 2, which includes a writing sample. They will receive instructions via email by mid-April. 

The selection process is competitive. A limited number of seats are available annually based on the availability of faculty to serve as dissertation mentors in the applicants’ interest area.

Subject to faculty approval, those who do not meet all of the above criteria may be admitted on a provisional basis.