Rapid City: Education and Research
Elementary and Secondary Schools
The Rapid City School District, second largest in the state, covers 419 square miles. The district offers services to special education and academically gifted children as well as technology staff development and Indian education programs. Serving Ellsworth Air Force Base and surrounding area, the Douglas School District has 2,400 students, one preschool, three elementary schools, one middle school, and one high school.
The following is a summary of data regarding Rapid City's public schools as of the 2003–2004 school year.
Total enrollment: 12,914
Number of facilities elementary schools: 16
middle schools: 5
high schools: 3
Student/teacher ratio: 16.5:1
Funding per pupil: $5,648 (2001-2002)
Rapid City also has several private and parochial schools.
Colleges and Universities
South Dakota School of Mines and Technology (SDSM&T) has long been recognized as one of the best science and engineering colleges in the county. SDSM&T, which enrolls about 2,400 students, is known for its technological expertise and innovation, as well as for its world-famous Museum of Geology. The school offers 16 bachelors, 12 masters, 3 doctoral and several co-curricular degrees. Western Dakota Technical Institute provides diplomas and Associate in Applied Science degrees in 25 career fields to more than 4,000 students; fields of study include business and construction trades, agricultural, electronics, human services, computer aided drafting, and mechanical career fields. Western Dakota Tech works closely with the local business community to provide student training programs. National American University offers a wide variety of bachelor and associate degrees in business.
Libraries and Research Centers
The Rapid City Public Library, with more than 147,000 volumes, has strong collections in business and audio-visual materials, and operates one bookmobile, a homebound service and homework help. Its South Dakota collection includes many items for historical research. The library subscribes to several hundred magazines and newspapers and houses the collection of the Rapid City Society for Genealogical Research Inc. South Dakota School of Mines and Technology (SDSM&T), National American University, and Rapid City Regional Hospital also have libraries.
SDSM&T has been involved in providing research services for government, industry, and business for at least a century, with a primary emphasis on energy, the environment, and mineral development. They are also a regional Patent and Trademark Depository and house a 15-seat computer lab.
Public Library Information: Rapid City Public Library, 610 Quincy Street, Rapid City, SD 57701; telephone (605)394-4171; fax (605)394-6626
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