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South Dakota Universities will finish semeters online only

South Dakota Universities will finish semeters online only

BHSU to continue online classes through end of semester; Graduation postponed due to COVID-19

News Release - March 24, 2020

SPEARFISH, S.D. - In coordination with Gov. Kristi Noem’s Executive Order, the South Dakota Board of Regents with input from the six state universities has announced that all South Dakota public universities will continue online teaching through the end of spring semester. Originally online classes were scheduled for two weeks; however, given the increasing number of coronavirus cases, online classes will continue through the end of the spring semester. 

In addition, May commencement will be postponed in response to the global COVID-19 pandemic.

“This was a difficult decision for all of us, and I know it creates numerous difficulties for our graduating students and their families,” Black Hills State University President Laurie S. Nichols said. “But this step is necessary to minimize the further spread of this virus for the health and safety of BHSU students and the surrounding community.”

She noted that the May commencement will be combined with the Fall commencement set for Dec. 12, 2020. Those who were planning to participate in the May commencement ceremony will be invited to participate in the December ceremony.

Over the next two weeks, BHSU will work with students in residence halls to facilitate a move-out process that allows for appropriate social distancing, as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Students may set up appointments to move out seven days a week, with hours ranging from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. See details of move-out. For those students who need to stay in the residence hall through the end of the semester, they will be allowed to do so.

Procedures for partial refunds for select students have been posted. The refunds cover partial reimbursement for housing, meal plans and parking. BHSU will issue the refunds according to the guidelines. If you have questions, call 605-642-6562.

Nichols added that BHSU is urging all students and community members to continue to practice social distancing and stay home as much as possible.

“As the virus spreads, it’s vital that we all stay home and reduce our coronavirus footprint,” Nichols said. “Your actions today will impact our whole community. I know you are tired of hearing it, but we must double down on our social distancing knowing that this is a temporary situation. We all look forward to the future when we regain some normalcy.  Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.”


As the COVID-19 virus further impacts the state, region and country, the South Dakota Board of Regents announced effective immediately that all public university courses will continue by remote delivery through the remainder of the spring semester. Face-to-face instruction will not resume this semester.

“The Board of Regents has made a very difficult decision during an extraordinary time in our history,” says Jim Rankin, president of South Dakota School of Mines & Technology. “The coronavirus pandemic has challenged us in countless ways, but the health and safety of our students, staff, faculty and community is paramount. We understand the disappointment people must feel, but we will get through this together.”

State officials anticipate an increase in COVID-19 infections for at least the next eight weeks. As a result, the South Dakota Mines spring 2020 commencement ceremonies are also postponed. Further details will be shared as new plans are confirmed.

Mines’ priority is to ensure that instruction continues through the remainder of the spring semester. However, students who opt to withdraw completely from the university on or before Saturday, March 28, may qualify for a refund.

South Dakota Mines will work with students to retrieve their belongings from the residence halls, facilitating a move-out process that allows for appropriate social distancing as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

More information on refunds and housing is available at https://www.sdsmt.edu/ Emergency/COVID-19-FAQ

All South Dakota Mines campus events have been canceled through May 15, and all campus buildings and facilities will remain closed to the public and to students.

“We urge our students, faculty and staff to adhere to the recommendations of the CDC and stay home. Social distancing will play a critical role in controlling the spread of this virus,” says Rankin. “It’s important to remember that this isn’t forever. By making these sacrifices now, we speed the progress toward a return to normal. And we very much look forward to having our Hardrockers back on campus next year.”

To learn more about South Dakota Mines response to COVID-19, visit sdsmt.edu/emergency. Students with questions or concerns may email [email protected] For information about COVID-19, visit the CDC or the WHO

Phone number: 605-347-4455
E-mail: [email protected]
Address: 1612 Junction Avenue, Suite #1
Sturgis, SD 57785