Black Hills State University President Kay Schallenkamp

Dr. Kay Schallenkamp, president of Black Hills State University since 2006, announced today that she will retire from the South Dakota public higher education system at the end of the 2013-14 academic year.


"It has been an honor and privilege to serve as president of Black Hills State University.  The faculty, staff, and students are among the best in the country.  We truly transform lives by focusing on students and preparing them for successful careers and personal lives.  I have been blessed to have spent 40 years in higher education surrounded by bright, talented students, faculty, and staff.  While I look forward to spending more time with  Ken, my children, grandchildren, and friends, I will miss the vibrancy of the campus life," Schallenkamp said.

The South Dakota Board of Regents commended Schallenkamp on her years of service and dedication to the state's third largest university. With Schallenkamp’s guidance, BHSU has steadily increased enrollment and graduation rates, added several new undergraduate and graduate degree programs and increased the amount of grant funding and scholarship donations.


 “Under Kay Schallenkamp’s leadership, Black Hills State University is recognized as a dynamic and growing comprehensive university in this region and beyond,” said Regents President Dean M. Krogman. “We salute President Schallenkamp’s continuing work to foster innovative changes in education. Her efforts to partner with the Sanford Underground Research Facility in developing a world-class science laboratory will pay dividends for many years to come,” Krogman said. “We thank Kay for her service to our state and wish her the very best.”

Schallenkamp has built and strengthened collaborations with business, industry and government agencies to meet workforce needs and create experiential learning opportunities for BHSU students. She also led the University through successful national accreditation reviews by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE), meeting and exceeding all six NCATE standards.

With a vision to have BHSU recognized as an innovative, high-quality university throughout the world, Schallenkamp has worked tirelessly to increase the profile of South Dakota’s third-largest university. She has served as the chairwoman of the President’s Council for NCAA Division II, the American Association of Colleges of Teacher Education and the National Teachers Hall of Fame in addition to serving as a member of the Board of Directors for the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the North Central Association and the Renaissance Group.

During her tenure, BHSU received the prestigious national Christa McAuliffe Award for Excellence in Teacher Education and was granted full membership to NCAA Division II. The first South Dakota university president to join the American College and University President’s Climate Commitment, Schallenkamp has led BHSU in numerous efforts to reduce the campus carbon footprint including LEED Gold certification of the Student Union and the Life Sciences Laboratory. The state’s only master’s degree in sustainability was launched this year.

She has been instrumental in physical transformations across campus as well, including a major renovation and addition to the Student Union, the construction of the Life Sciences Laboratory, and updates to the campus residence halls, classroom facilities across campus, Donald E. Young Sports and Fitness Center, and Lyle Hare Stadium. Construction is underway on the Alumni Foundation Welcome Center and preparations are being made for the addition of a new residence hall and a remodel of Jonas Science Hall in partnership with the Sanford Underground Research Facility.

In addition to her term as BHSU’s ninth president, Schallenkamp’s 40-year career in higher education included nine years as president of Emporia State University in Kansas. She also served as provost and vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and provost at Chadron State College in Nebraska.

She holds three degrees in communication disorders: a B.S. from Northern State University, a master’s degree from the University of South Dakota, and a Ph.D. from the University of Colorado.

She and her husband, Ken, have two daughters. Heather (Shad) Newbury is a high school English teacher in Kansas and Jenni (Danny) Simon is a faculty member at UNC-Greensboro. Heather and Shad have two children, Alyssa and Tyler. Jenni and Danny have two sons, Keenan and Reece.

Krogman said the Board of Regents will  soon announce a presidential search process and timeline for securing Schallenkamp’s successor.