All occupations were inspired and taught by teachers.

Inspired by Teachers

Black Hills State University is the largest teacher preparation program in the state recognized for its legacy of preparing teachers, honors teachers for their positive influence.

“Military men and women, business people, dentists, communications professionals, educators – we were all inspired by teachers,” said BHSU President Tom Jackson, Jr.  “Teachers take the time to invest in us and inspire us to achieve. At BHSU we’re investing in the future by ensuring we continue to prepare exceptional teachers.”

The BHSU College of Education and Behavioral Sciences has strong programs that prepare teachers for all grade levels and in many content areas, with results that show high job placement rates and award-winning alumni performance.

Teachers inspire students on a daily basis and open their eyes and minds to the myriad of possibilities. Successful people, no matter their career field, have one thing in common – they were all inspired by teachers.



Julieanne Morse

2nd Lieutenant South Dakota National Guard
Class of '14

Julieanne Morse, 2nd Lieutenant in the South Dakota National Guard, deployed to Afghanistan during her third year of college at BHSU. That experience, combined with her education, opened her eyes to many possible career paths. She’s now focused on serving at the national level – perhaps even at the Pentagon. 


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Alex Hanson

Chief Budget Analyst for the State of South Dakota
Class of '10

At age 26, Alex Hanson knows the opportunity to shape decisions in the South Dakota Governor’s Budget Office is really unique for someone so young but says that his educational experience at BHSU prepared him well to meet the challenges and demands. “We get to make South Dakota a better place to live,” says Alex.


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Jesse Dana

Orthodontist at Meyer & Dana Orthodontics
Class of '97


Dr. Jesse Dana and his team at Meyer & Dana Orthodontics in Spearfish ensure dental patients receive the highest-quality care. Jesse makes sure to be "positive and encouraging to our team and our patients, to always make sure we treat our patients like family here."  


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Anya Mueller

Reporter & Social Media Director for KNBN
Class of '02

Anya (Olverson) Mueller greets the Black Hills each weekday morning as a reporter and social media director for KNBN, Rapid City’s NBC affiliate. A job shadowing experience at the BHSU campus radio station convinced her to pursue a broadcasting career. That was an excellent decision for Anya who loves her job and continues to dream big.


Read more | Young Professional of the Year Award




Rylan Sprague

Northern Hills District Botanist with the Black Hills National Forest
Class of '12


With a hand lens magnifier, canteen and hiking boots, Rylan Sprague is ready for his work day as a Northern Hills District Botanist with the Black Hills National Forest. “I’m honored to manage all plant resources in the Northern Hills,” said Rylan. “We conduct field work, hike and survey, protect sensitive species, document GPS points, and restore and enhance habitats.”


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David Mickelson

President & CEO of Graham Tire Company
Class of '94

David Mickelson is the first to admit that his decision to leave a successful career in banking to work in automobile services was a surprise and a risk. His decision to attend Black Hills State University was also surprising and perhaps a bit risky since he was breaking family tradition, but it was also essential to his success. BHSU was a great fit for him.


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