The University of South Dakota President James Abbott gave his annual State of the University speech in Aalfs Auditorium Sept. 19 at 4 p.m. to an attentive audience, and explained a $261 million fundraising campaign for the coming year.
With this campaign, Abbott said USD plans to fundraise for scholarship endowments, student enrichments, capital expansions and athletics to improve the university.
The 2011-12 academic year brought in many achievements, Abbott continued. One of these achievements includes the 1,200 first-year students the university welcomed this semester, which will in turn boost the school’s GPA and ACT scores.
“This is record breaking for first-time, full-time students [here at USD],” Abbott said.
Even under reports from The Chronicle Survey, which said by 2020, 60 percent of courses will be taken online, Abbott said he sees USD’s on-campus enrollment growth as an encouraging sign of what is to come.
Abbott also recounted university accomplishments from the past year that included renewed opportunities and expansion in the business and theater departments, earning a spot on the “Best List 2013” in the Princeton Review and being voted the No. 1 provider of graduate education in South Dakota, as well as reeling in the largest first-year class to date.