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DSU announces $90M initiative to grow state’s cyber-research industry

Dakota State University announced Wednesday a 90-million dollar initiative to grow the cyber-research industry in South Dakota aimed at keeping more DSU graduates in the state. 

DSU President José-Marie Griffiths said that they created a vision to expand DSU’s Applied Research Lab to stimulate a vibrant cyber-research industry in Sioux Falls,  which supports national security and defense, offers workforce and economic development opportunities, and establishes South Dakota as a cyber state.  She said the five-year plan includes opportunities for Madison and Sioux Falls.

In Sioux Falls, Griffiths said a new highly specialized facility will be built, which is expected to open in the fall of 2025 and support up to 500 full-time jobs.  The plan also includes the establishment of a non-profit corporation to hire DSU-Applied Research Lab staff to perform and manage the applied research and lease space from DSU, both in Madison and Sioux Falls.

Griffiths said in a press conference in Sioux Falls Wednesday that the vision and plan for this initiative involved the work of a number of different entities.  

Miles Beacom, CEO of PREMIER Bankcard announced that T. Denny Sanford would be providing 50-million dollars over five years to help construct the facility to house the expanded DSU Applied Research Lab in Sioux Falls.

The partnership also includes up to sixteen acres of land donated by Sanford Health at the Sanford Sports Complex adjacent to Sanford’s Virtual Care Center.  The City of Sioux Falls is proposing to give ten-million dollars for infrastructure needs for the facility, and Forward Sioux Falls is donating 250-thousand dollars for planning a Cyber/IT Park in Sioux Falls.  The plan also includes 30-million dollars from the state, proposed by Governor Kristi Noem in her Fiscal Year-23 budget request.  Noem said Wednesday that this will help DSU in its goal to double its number of graduates in The Beacom College, and to launch the Governor’s Cyber Academy statewide.

U.S. Senator Mike Rounds said that everything we do depends on cyber security and that this will help grow the work force in this area.  He said that DSU has been a leader in this area for years, but this will help solidify the state as well as the home of the next generation of leaders in the cyber security industry. 


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