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Black Hills State University celebrates its Quasquicentennial year, the University is also celebrating increasing enrollment. BHSU has had steadily growing enrollment, and the spring 2008 semester again showed an increase.

“Our visionary founding fathers would likely be pleased to see that Black Hills State University has emerged as a leader in higher education and now 125 years later is thriving with increasing enrollment and greater than ever interest in our quality innovative educational programs,” President Kay Schallenkamp says. “Since Black Hills State University was founded in 1883, the University has grown and expanded to become a multipurpose comprehensive University which is now the largest University in the west river region. We look forward to our continued growth as we advance in our ongoing quest to transform lives.”

BHSU President Kay Schallenkamp attributes the high enrollment to a number of factors including a greatly improved retention rate. BHSU, which has placed an emphasis on initiatives to improve retention, is seeing unprecedented success. The fall 2007 to spring 2008 retention rate reached an all-time high of nearly 85 percent.

BHSU is also experiencing a growing demand for classes in Rapid City. BHSU currently offers more than 100 courses at a number of locations in Rapid City, the state’s second largest city. The legislators are currently considering a proposal to accept a land donation in Rapid City and build a higher education center to replace the educational building that formerly housed classes on Ellsworth Air Force Base. The center in Rapid City would accommodate students’ needs for a central location.