Health Care Careers Articles

Talent Draft day draws high school, college students from 11 Midwest states

They logged in by the hundreds, from Missouri to Michigan, Ohio to Illinois – and left learning more about the career opportunities available in Sioux Falls.

This was the 2020 version of the annual Talent Draft Day, an event organized by the Sioux Falls Development Foundation to connect middle school, high school and college students with education and training paths that lead to rewarding careers.


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Attracting Talent for the Short and Long-Term Drives Workforce Programming.

South Dakota State University was about to play its first-round basketball game in this year’s Summit League Championships, and the energy was everywhere.

It carried over from the Denny Sanford Premier Center to Crooked Pint Ale House across the street, where a packed reception drew dozens of students, alumni, and area professionals.

Organized by the Sioux Falls Development Foundation, it was meant to “really draw the kids into the area, give them a really fun experience, connect them with our employers, connect them with our great city, make sure they know about all the wonderful career opportunities here,” said Denise Guzzetta, the foundation’s vice president of talent and workforce development.

“We’ve made it fun and engaging.”

SDSU president Barry Dunn praised the approach.

“I think it’s incredibly creative. I think we’ve all be frustrated with how do we tell our story better,” he said. “I’m just all for it.”


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Augustana, Sanford partner to meet workforce demands

Augustana and Sanford Health are close. They’re close geographically, within an easy walk or bike ride in central Sioux Falls. They’re close foundationally, as both have roots in the Lutheran faith. And they’re close professionally, working together to prepare young people for careers in health care. It’s one example of how Augustana is partnering with the business community to help meet workforce needs.

“We’re fortunate that Augustana has such a longstanding history of producing very high-quality graduates,” said Diana Vanderwoude, Sanford’s senior executive director with human resources.

“We have regular engagement with Augustana about what our workforce needs are, looking at what the hot jobs are and the types of programs they might consider starting based on our workforce needs.”


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Career Spotlight: Shanna Hennies, Early inspiration leads to varied career path.

Shanna Hennies’ first foray into health care came at age 5, when her grandfather had a stroke. Her mother was a nurse in her hometown of Philip, S.D., so Hennies saw the need for care firsthand.


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Career Spotlight: Tiffany Solum, East coast move leads to love of S.D. living.

Tiffany Solum made a big move at age 20 – from Pennsylvania, after graduating from nursing school at Penn State University and working as an emergency room trauma nurse at an urban hospital.


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Career Spotlight: Valerie Bares, After start in financial services, data-driven professional finds fit in healthcare.

Valerie Bares arrived at SDSU uncertain about what the future held.


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