Sergeant Caesar and Private Frank Report for Duty


On July 23, the WDT Simulation Center staff traveled to Hot Springs to support the South Dakota Army National Guard.  The training event was a result of the outstanding relationship that WDT shares with local military installations.  WDT Simulation Center Director, Lloyd McNett, and Simulation Operations Specialist, Lynn Birk, worked directly with Medical Training Officer, Lieutenant Keith Bryant, and Medical Operations Noncommissioned Officer, Master Sergeant Danny Doty, to arrange the training event.

The scenarios focused on realistic simulations for triage, treatment, and transport, and featured two of WDT’s high-fidelity patient simulators, Caesar and Frank.  WDT Student Success Center Coach, Kevin Brinkman, also volunteered as a standardized patient.  The various scenarios included bleeding control, airway management, and burn treatment.  Lt. Bryant stated that the training was invaluable to the National Guard medical corps readiness as well as their preparation to support the 2016 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally.  Future plans include supporting other medical corps requirements such as birth and delivery as well as transport and hand-off to an actual hospital.

For more information about Western Dakota Tech simulation, click here.


WDT enrollment increases 8.4 percent


Enrollment for summer semester is up 8.4 percent this year at Western Dakota Tech.

“We believe students have the potential to succeed, and are committed to helping them realize and embrace that potential.” President Ann Bolman said. “This enrollment increase shows that we are correct in that belief.”

Western Dakota Tech added two new programs last fall, Criminal Justice and Dental Assisting. Those additions and additions of night classes in Transportation Technician and Welding and Fabrication have contributed to enrollment increases.

“We don’t just want to enroll students,” Bolman said. “We want to ensure all the academic and personal support they need.” Bolman said. “We recently added multiple positions in our Student Success Center and we’re always striving to provide more flexible class options for students. These are just a couple ways we work to support our students.”

Western Dakota Tech boasts a placement rate of 86 percent. Those students are working, continuing their education, or serving in the military, six months after graduation.

“Ultimately, our goal is to prepare students to enter their careers as smart, skilled individuals who bring a positive outlook to their work,” Bolman said. “We are so impressed by them every day.”

Precision machining student makes waves


Western Dakota Tech student, Jeremiah Spencer, is well on his way after receiving his Precision Machining diploma one week before receiving his high school diploma in May.

Spencer’s accomplishment is a result of the Dual Enrollment program, which allows students to earn high-school and college credit at the same time. Students in good academic standing are able to take dual classes in their junior and senior years.

“I took Dual Enrollment classes after my junior year during the summer so I could finish during my senior year,” Spencer said.

Spencer focused on precision machining classes because he has a passion for machining, but high school students can use the Dual Enrollment program to take any class offered at Western Dakota Tech.

“I actually wanted to be something like a machinist when I was younger and this gave me a really great opportunity to become a machinist. For other students who want transferable credits, it’s really great for that. I just think it’s a cool thing.

Spencer is now ready to enter the workforce in hopes of beginning a promising career. Machinists are expected to enjoy growth of 13.8 percent through 2020 and make an average hourly wage of $17.55 in the Rapid City area. Spencer says he’s ready to get started.

“Find work! And get enough experience and enough money to start my own shop some day,” Spencer said.

Spencer’s story was featured on the Black Hills Fox News segment, Along the Way. To view the story, click here.

To learn more about Dual Enrollment, click here.

To learn more about Precision Machining, click here.