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118: Dan Engebretson - Gearing up for the Future

Season 1, Ep. 118

Dan Engebretson, Ph.D., chair of the biomedical engineering program at the University of South Dakota and the director of the Graduate Education and Applied Research (GEAR) Center in Sioux Falls, spoke with Credit Hour about the history and future of biomedical engineering and the emerging options USD students have in this growing field.


The GEAR Center was opened in 2009 to provide students with a solid foundation in the sciences to prepare them to work in the evolving biotech and medtech economy. It is an intersection of academic research with industry so students at the center can work on real problems found in clinics and hospitals in hopes of solving them.


In the past, the biomedical engineering department only offered graduate level classes, however, Engebretson saw an opportunity to build an undergraduate program to support the industry in Sioux Falls and to grow the workforce in the field. The department now offers certificate programs, an associate’s degree and a bachelor’s degree, and it is always changing to support students’ interests.


“I’m finding a lot of our students are interested in entrepreneurship,” Engebretson said. “We want to equip the students with the technical skills they need and get students familiar with funding they can receive to start their business.”

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VOICES AMPLIFIED | The Nexus of Law & Criminal Justice Reform

Season 4, Ep. 3
The University of South Dakota’s podcast Credit Hour welcomed USD School of Law dean Neil Fulton to discuss the legal dimensions of systemic racism, social justice and criminal justice reform as part of its series “Voices Amplified.” “To address these problems, we have to understand, identify and engage with our differences, and then seek out points of commonality. That requires having difficult conversations in a patient way,” said Fulton. “None of us are really built to do that without working at it. Higher education can help us be prepared to do that.” Fulton discussed the legal aspects of criminal justice reform efforts like removing qualified immunity and defunding the police as well as the ways higher education can address issues like systemic racism. “I think particularly here in South Dakota it’s so important because coming to a college campus may be the first time where a lot of students have a sustained encounter with someone who isn’t like them, that doesn’t look like them, who isn’t of the same race or who doesn’t have the same socioeconomic background,” said Fulton. “This can be one of the first places where we have the sustained opportunity to have those conversations and build up both the skills and inclinations to attack these problems.” Credit Hour is the University of South Dakota’s podcast highlighting the achievement, research and scholarship of its staff, students, alumni and faculty. Follow Credit Hour on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and www.usd.edu/podcast.