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Presentation College Phi Beta Lambda Members Travel to State PBL Fall Leadership Conference

Students from three universities came together to network at the South Dakota Phi Beta Lambda (PBL) Fall Leadership Conference.  The conference was held November 10 on the campus of Dakota State University in Madison, South Dakota.  Participants from Presentation College (PC), Dakota State University, and Northern State University attended this exciting conference to enhance their business skills, expand their networks, and participate in a SD PBL community service project.

PC PBL members that attended the conference were Rodney Axson (Ohio), Ben Heather (Alaska), Ethan Leech (Wyoming), Sam Motzkus (Colorado), Zach Neiderman (Colorado), and Colton Schusted (Minnesota).  PC PBL members were active participants in the group community service project, which allowed them to tie blankets that were donated to area shelters.

During the conference, students heard from a panel discussion that consisted of business leaders from various industries, such as manufacturing, finance, banking, and healthcare.  Breakout sessions at the conference allowed students to learning more about disruptive technologies and a new credit rating system.  Following the conference, students met with Fallout Shelter Ministries (FSM) out of Watertown. FSM has operated as a non-profit since 2016.  It provides leadership and service to others locally, nationally, and around the world.  FSM teaches others how to tap into their strengths and lead by example through (the open door of) martial arts such as hapkido, taekwondo, self-defense, and response training.


About FBLA-PBL, Inc.

Future Business Leaders of America-Phi Beta Lambda, Inc., the premier student business organization, is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) education association with a quarter million members and advisers in over 6,500 active middle school, high school, and college chapters worldwide. FBLA-PBL’s mission is to inspire and prepare students to become community-minded business leaders in a global society through relevant career preparation and leadership experiences. The association is headquartered in Reston, Virginia, just outside of Washington, D.C. For more information, visit

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Tennant Participates in Pi Gamma Mu Conference

Division of Social Science and Humanities professor Brad Tennant recently participated in the 2021 Pi Gamma Mu Triennial International Convention.  In addition to chairing the poster sessions, Tennant gave a poster presentation titled “James Earle Fraser’s Images of the American West” and served as a facilitator for the Leadership Development Program.

Pi Gamma Mu is the oldest and preeminent interdisciplinary social science honor society and has been certified by the Association of College Honor Societies since 1953. Tennant is the faculty sponsor for Presentation College’s South Dakota Zeta Chapter, and since 2019, he has served on the Pi Gamma Mu board of trustees as Chancellor of the North/Northwestern Region. 

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Presentation College Student Chosen as Finalist at Innovation Expo

Presentation College student, Ian Kelly, was chosen as a finalist to compete at the Innovation Expo Student Business Idea Competition in Sioux Falls, held on October 7.  Innovation Expo is a conference that focuses on “where suits and shirts connect” entrepreneurs, investors, and innovators from across South Dakota to build the entrepreneurial ecosystem.  The event is organized by the South Dakota Enterprise Institute. 

The Innovation Expo Student Idea Competition is open to all higher education students in South Dakota.  Students who participate, must share information on the feasibility of the business product or service, the opportunity to create a business around the product / service, the market potential, and list barriers to entry.

Ian’s business idea consisted of creating edible organic sunscreen.  He came up with the idea by noting the convenience it would serve to individuals and families while out hiking, spending the day at the beach enjoying the sunshine, etc.  Ian noted that convenience was key to this business idea.  Ian received a cash prize for being chosen as a finalist in the competition. 

Ian is a senior athlete at Presentation College majoring in sport and event management.  He comes from Aurora, Colorado. 

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Spirit to Retire as Presentation College’s Live Mascot

ABERDEEN, SD – The Saint Bernard known as “Spirit” has been Presentation College’s mascot for the past eight years, and it’s time to hang up her barrel as she retires this coming December.

PC welcomed Spirit in 2013 as a puppy, and she has been on campus every day since. PC’s mascot spent most of her time lounging in the halls and greeting students, faculty, and staff at the school. She also attended Saints athletic events, making hundreds of appearances at PC athletic home games, running out onto the fields and courts, and greeting fans, young and old.

Her presence on campus has fulfilled more than a mascot role, in many ways, according to Presentation College President, Dr. Paula Langteau. “Spirit became the campus’ beloved pet,” she said. “Students and campus guests have sought her out and gained as much in affection from her as they provided to her. In short, it was a mutually beneficial relationship.”

When she wasn’t searching the halls for a scratch on the head or food, Spirit made her home with Stacy Bauer a former employee at Presentation College. That is where she will spend her days after retirement. “Spirit—and by extension, Stacy—has attended virtually every event on campus, which is quite an exhausting commitment,” said Langteau. “Spirit deserves her time to retire, relax, and hang her tongue out,” Langteau quipped.

No need to worry: Spirit is doing well in terms of health and will be bestowed the distinction of ‘Mascot Emerita,’ at halftime at the December 17th PC women’s basketball game (game starts at 3pm), a fitting tribute to honor her career. She will also be attending a midnight breakfast for a final hurrah with students during finals week this semester.

Spirit will continue her duties throughout the fall semester supporting the Saints and enjoying her last semester as PC’s mascot. Presentation College encourages fans to share their love for Spirit on social media using #PCSpirit.

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Six inducted into Pi Gamma Mu – South Dakota Zeta Chapter

Six Presentation College students have been inducted into the South Dakota Zeta Chapter of Pi Gamma Mu, an International Social Science Honor Society, for the fall semester. The new student inductees are Benita Creager, Danette Damman, Rachel Grothe, Katrin Kriener, Brent Rensink, and Amy Turner.

Membership in Pi Gamma Mu is open to qualified undergraduate and graduate students, as well as faculty members.  To qualify for membership, a student must have junior, senior, or graduate standing and have a “B” or better average in at least 20 semester hours of social science classes.

Pi Gamma Mu has over 150 chapters located at colleges and universities in the United States and abroad.  This is the tenth year of the South Dakota Zeta Chapter, which now has ninety lifetime members, including two former Pi Gamma Mu graduate scholarship recipients.  Since Pi Gamma Mu is certified by the Association of College Honor Societies, members can also qualify for a two-level starting pay grade increase if employed by the federal government.  

Dr. Brad Tennant is the faculty sponsor for the Presentation College chapter and serves as the Regional Chancellor for the North/Northwest Region on the Pi Gamma Mu Board of Trustees.

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Featured News

PC’s Strategic Re-Envisioning focuses on Rural Health Care

Engaging Consultant to develop Business Plan

Engaging Consultant to develop Business Plan

Amid nationally declining higher education enrollments around the country, made more acute by the COVID pandemic, Presentation College, like the South Dakota state universities and most other colleges and universities nationwide, is seeking ways to work more efficiently and effectively to carry out its mission while adapting to the evolving needs of students and the larger community.

To that end, PC has announced its recently completed Strategic Re-Envisioning Plan, with 3 strategic priorities: (1) Employ targeted Recruitment and Retention Protocols, (2) Implement Key Complements to the Student Experience, and (3) Prioritize Investment in Rural Health Care Education. The third priority is the centerpiece to the College’s new vision, and the Board of Trustees announced it will be hiring a national consultant to help convert the concept into a step-by-step business plan.

The plan builds upon PC’s strengths. Its Nursing Program has a special place in the history of the College and accounts for half of the current student enrollment. Further, PC has excelled at offering the program online, ranking 4th in the country of best LPN-to-BSN programs by

“We are proud to have served as leaders in online education well before the COVID pandemic,” said Dr. Paula Langteau, the College’s President, “and we continue to hone our expertise to lead transformational change in higher education.”

“That expertise, coupled with the ever-increasing need for Nursing education (heighted by the pandemic) has led to expansion of our online nursing program as a key priority within a focus on Nursing and Health Sciences,” she added.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employment Projections 2019-2029, Registered Nursing (RN) is listed among the top occupations in terms of job growth through 2029. The RN workforce is expected to grow from 3 million in 2019 to 3.3 million in 2029. The Bureau also projects 175,900 openings for RNs each year through 2029 when nurse retirements and workforce exits are factored into the number of nurses needed in the U.S.

The nurse shortage is felt most acutely in the rural areas where access to care is limited ( Furthermore, South Dakota ranks 7th in the nation for “projected nurse shortage by state”

Sr. Janice Klein, President of the Presentation Sisters, said, “We value Dr. Paula Langteau's leadership which demonstrates our Sisters' legacy of addressing the needs of the times, just as our foundress Nano Nagle served learners' needs during her time of education ministry.”



The process for determining the College’s strategic priorities started back in December 2020, when the campus was closed for a day so that all faculty and staff could participate in a coordinated, collaborative process to assess institutional strengths and to generate a wide range of ideas to meet changing marketplace needs. Following that session, a volunteer group of shared governance representatives from across the College, as well as from the Board of Trustees and the Corporate Board of the Presentation Sisters formed a Strategic Re-Envisioning Team.

That team worked through the Spring and Summer of 2021 to systematically and comprehensively assess the nearly one hundred innovative ideas generated by all faculty and staff in December, evaluating their alignment to, and support of, the Mission and Core Values of the College, institutional performance data, and current market analysis. They also engaged students in various aspects of the process. The resulting Re-Envisioning Plan was shared with all college employees at Fall Semester orientation, inviting them to participate on implementation teams.

Presentation Sisters President Sr. Janice Klein said, “We are pleased to see the Presentation Sisters' mission reflected in the Presentation College faculty and staff commitment to serve students.”

Presentation College Board Chair, Terry Helms, said, “The Presentation College Board of Trustees are excited to be a part of the Re- Envisioning Plan for the College. It has been extremely rewarding to interact with the Leadership, Faculty and Staff of the College and the Presentation Sisters in developing a path forward to continue to strengthen the college’s ability to prepare its graduates for the ever-changing world.”


Next Steps

                To expedite the implementation of the Strategic Re-Envisioning Plan, PC’s Board of Trustees and Corporate Board of the Presentation Sisters are currently vetting over a dozen national consultants with experience leading transformational redirection of small, private colleges to determine who to engage to assist PC, over the next few months, in developing a step-by-step business plan.

The contracted individual/organization will gather input from key campus and community constituents on the College’s strategic redirection and any variables that need to be considered in its implementation, review institutional data, and develop a practical, step-by-step business plan and accompanying recommendations.  

The resulting plan and recommendations will then be shared with constituents for final comment and feedback before the Presentation College Board of Trustees determines which recommendations to implement.

Current students and their parents, faculty and staff, alumni, donors, community leaders and other key constituents will be invited to provide input and feedback both as the consultant begins their work and once a set of recommendations is received.

Board Chair Helms, said, “The Board of Trustees is eager to support the development of a practical business plan to bring the Re-Envisioning plan to fruition. This is an exciting time for the College as it continues to adapt to the needs of the students and the community and will enable the College to continue its success well into the future.”