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CHRIS VONDRACEK | Rattlesnake Summer

Season 5, Ep. 20

Poet and journalist Christopher Vondracek discusses new book, Rattlesnake Summer, on Credit Hour.

VERMILLION, S.D. – Poet and journalist Christopher Vondracek, B.A. ’07, M.A. 09, discussed his career and new book on South Dakota’s 66 counties, Rattlesnake Summer, on the podcast Credit Hour. 


“There were all these documents and stories and human tales that I felt couldn’t come out in journalism, but they could come out in poem,” said Vondracek, discussing his travels across South Dakota. “That reignited my love of poetry as a medium.”


Vondracek was an Allen H. Neuharth Excellence in Journalism Scholarship recipient getting his start in journalism at USD’s student newspaper, the Volante. His new book, Rattlesnake Summer, provides a glimpse at South Dakota’s 66 counties through 66 poems written while traveling across South Dakota. He currently covers government and politics and South Dakota for Forum News Service.


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.

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ERIC KURTZ | 50 Years of Service

Season 5, Ep. 22
USD Center for Disabilities Executive Director Eric Kurtz Discusses Center’s Mission and 50th Anniversary on Credit HourVERMILLION, S.D. – Eric Kurtz, '09 Ph.D., the executive director of the USD Center for Disabilities, discussed the Center’s mission and 50th anniversary on the podcast, Credit Hour. “I wish people would perceive disabilities as being a natural part of the human existence,” said Kurtz. “People with disabilities make up a large proportion of our population. One in six children are diagnosed with a developmental disability. Sixty-one million adults live with a disability. They shouldn’t be shamed or thought of as needing fixing.”Kurtz was named the executive director of the USD Center for Disabilities in 2019. Kurtz earned a Ph.D. in school psychology at USD and has served as an associate professor of pediatrics at the USD Sanford School of Medicine.The Center for Disabilities is South Dakota’s federally designated University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) which provides training, clinical services, research and information dissemination with a vision that all people, including individuals with disabilities, can achieve independence, self-determination, productivity and community inclusion. It was established in 1971 and will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year.“The mission is to improve the care and lives of individuals,” said Kurtz. “We do that through direct clinical services, research, training and technical assistance, information dissemination and policy work.”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.