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LATI Teams with Industry to Expand Build Dakota Scholarships

Posted on: March 5, 2015   |   Category: News

WATERTOWN, SD – Lake Area Technical College is taking the recently-launched Build Dakota Scholarship program a step further by partnering with our community to increase the number of full-ride scholarships made possible by a $25 million donation from T. Denny Sanford and a $25 million grant by Gov. Dennis Daugaard from the South Dakota Future Fund.

Lake Area Technical College is teaming up with the private sector to offer the Stretch the Million, Grow Your Workforce program. “Stretch the Million is a way for industry and the public to help us scholarship more students by partnering with Build Dakota and ‘splitting’ a full-ride scholarship into two full-rides,” said LATI President Mike Cartney.  Prairie Lakes Healthcare System has already committed to provide two Stretch the Million scholarships, one in nursing and one in Medical Lab Tech.  “It’s all about getting more people in South Dakota’s skilled workforce pipeline by including public participation in the effort, and Prairie Lakes is leading the charge,” he said.

LuAnn Strait, LATI Director of Student Services, said all new students accepted to any of the eligible programs at LATI should apply for the scholarship. “You never know when another Stretch the Million sponsor will come forward and enable us to give that extra scholarship.  We are on a tight timeline and have more than a million dollars in full-ride scholarships to award for Fall of 2015. That’s 60 to 70 scholarships for eligible applicants.”  Strait went on to explain that although the initial deadline is March 31, new students can continue to apply and LATI will continue to award scholarships until classes have started in August.

Build Dakota supports students entering high-need workforce programs at South Dakota’s technical Colleges to fill the state’s technical career fields with skilled professionals. At Lake Area Technical College, eligible programs include Automotive Technology, Building Trades, Diesel Technology/CAT ThinkBIG program, Energy Technology/Energy Operations, Electronics Technology, Heavy Equipment Operator, Medical Lab Tech, Practical Nursing, Precision Machining, Robotics, and Welding. LATI is specifically expanding capacity in four programs and targeting scholarships in Nursing Online, Precision Machining Online, Robotics Online and Welding.

In order to be awarded a full-ride scholarship from Build Dakota, applicants must be a new student accepted into a high-needs program, agree to work in South Dakota for three years post-graduation, maintain a 2.5 grade point average, be a full-time student, and complete the program of study on time.  Stretch the Million recipients may be asked to also enter an agreement with their sponsoring business with additional obligations and commitments.

Area businesses that are interested in learning more about the Stretch the Million program should contact the Lake Area Technical College Foundation Office at 1-605-882-5284 or 1-800-657-4344.