What is SD HOSA?

South Dakota HOSA was established in 2012 as an initiative of the University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine and the South Dakota Area Health Education Center in response to the great need for future health profes

South Dakota HOSA was established in 2012 as an initiative of the University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine and  the South Dakota Area Health Education Center in response to the great need for future health professionals in our state. The goals of South Dakota HOSA are three-fold:

  1. ENVISION: Expanding and nurturing students’ awareness of all the healthcare careers available to them, while molding them into South Dakota’s future health professionals
  2. ENERGIZE: Becoming proactive in helping counselors develop a robust personal learning plan for students interested in becoming a future health professional. (ie: education, shadowing, and service)
  3. ENGAGE: Offering students opportunities to expand their understanding, create projects, and demonstrate skills through HOSA’s Competitive Events Program.

Founded in 1976, Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) is recognized by the US Department of Education as a career and technical student organization (CTSO), established with the idea of providing students opportunities to develop as a leader and a future employee. In a 2012 remarketing/rebranding strategy roll-out, HOSA moved away from the Health Occupations Students of America brand to HOSA-Future Health Professionals. The new name better encompassed the organization and its mission, while maintaining its ties to its early beginnings.

Since its inception HOSA has grown to more than 205,000 members. These members belong to one of more than 4,000 HOSA chapters existing in 48 states. In academic year 2016-17, 91 scholarships over $294, 200 were given away by National HOSA. HOSA is the only Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO) whose focus is 100% health care.

The structure of HOSA provides a comprehensive, rigorous, and relevant program to engage students interested in health careers, as well as an evaluation system that has been continuously tested, refined, and validated over three decades of use. HOSA’s Competitive Events Program offers members the opportunity to compete in teams or as individuals in more than 55 different events that fall along the broad spectrum of healthcare careers.


State Staff

  • Brock Rops

    State Advisor
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    Mr. Brock Rops is an Education Coordinator for South Dakota Area Health Education Center and the SD HOSA State Advisor. Mr. Rops has been involved as a leader in education for nearly 15 years.  Mr. Rops enjoys nurturing and encouraging young people. He has a passion for inspiring and instilling confidence in students as they begin to get more engaged in their pursuits as future health professionals. Mr. Rops believes the South Dakota HOSA program will answer students’ questions regarding careers in health care and the pathway involved to getting there.

    Outside of his duties as the SD HOSA State Advisor, Mr. Rops enjoys spending time with his wife Nancy, who is an OBGYN nurse, and two kids Finely(2) and Sutton (1 month). He relaxes by enjoying a round of golf or a game of basketball.

State Officers

  • Kelsi Snyder

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    Kelsi Snyder, a senior at Harrisburg High School, is your South Dakota HOSA’s president for the upcoming school year. She got involved with HOSA her freshman year in order to explore all health care careers have to offer and get involved. From there, Kelsi fell in love with the club and how it gave students an opportunity to grow in their leadership skills, responsibility, and their future careers as the health professionals of South Dakota. She is extremely thankful for HOSA for giving her the resources to hopefully one day reach her goal of becoming a genetic counselor.

    While not busy with HOSA, Kelsi enjoys being involved in a variety of extracurricular activities at Harrisburg (including DECA, National Honor Society, and Student Council). She’s very grateful for the opportunity to serve South Dakota HOSA and looks forward to her senior year!

  • Courtney Chrystal

    President Elect
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    Courtney Chrystal is a junior at Dakota Valley High School. Courtney joined HOSA her freshman year and was in awe of all the opportunities that were present. Quickly realizing what a wonderful organization HOSA is, Courtney felt called to serve and is immensely thankful for her opportunity to serve South Dakota HOSA as president elect. During her term, she hopes to spark passion among members and continually expand opportunities for them. Outside of HOSA Courtney is involved in student council, competitive and football cheer, theatre, National Honor Society and debate. She is beyond grateful for the chance to dedicate herself to South Dakota HOSA and its members!

  • Noah Keime

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    Noah is a senior at Dakota Valley High School. During his term as South Dakota State Secretary/Reporter he hopes to expand his knowledge of the health care field. Participating in HOSA has given him a way to explore his interest in medicine as well as made him a better leader and student. He hopes that he will be able to help others see what medicine has to offer. Besides HOSA Noah is involved in FBLA, student council, science bowl, Science Olympiad, quiz bowl, play, National Honor Society, and track. He is excited to be a part of the state officer team and he looks forward to sharing his passion with others.

  • Grace Boddicker

    Social Media/Historian
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    Grace Boddicker, a senior at Harrisburg High School, is your 2017-2018 South Dakota HOSA Social Media Consultant/ Historian. During her office as South Dakota Social Media Consultant, Grace plans to utilize multiple social media platforms to branch out to HOSA members across the state and get them more involved in the organization. Grace plans to pursue a career in Oncology Radiology. Besides HOSA, Grace has been involved in many different extracurriculars during her high school career, including Varsity Cheer, Show Choir, All-State Choir, National Honor Society, and Drama Club. She is very excited and honored to help serve South Dakota HOSA members this year and looks forward to all of the opportunities to come.

  • Michael Roberts

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    Michael Roberts, a HOSA member for three consecutive years, is a junior at O’Gorman High School. His participation in HOSA has helped him realize his dream of serving others through the medical profession. Besides HOSA, he is also involved in Students Against Destructive Decisions, Sanford Youth Medical Explorers, and volunteer service at the Avera Prince of Peace retirement community. He is excited to be a part of the HOSA State Officer team and hopes to inspire others to be a part of the medical field.

  • Mackenzie Peterson

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    Mackenzie Peterson is a junior at Harrisburg High School and South Dakota’s HOSA parliamentary for the 2017-2018 term. Mackenzie has been in HOSA for the three consecutive years and has been given the ability to expand her understanding and knowledge of the health care field. She is grateful for the opportunities that she has been presented through HOSA and the tools given for her to reach her future health care goals in genetics. While not busy with HOSA Mackenzie is involved in other extracurricular activities including National Honors Society, track, and cheer. She is looking forward to serving South Dakota HOSA members this year!

Board of Directors

  • Dr. Amy Bialas

    Academic Affairs-Sanford Health
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    Like many HOSA students, Amy Bialas solidified her interest in healthcare after taking Health Careers I & II in high school.  Dr. Bialas is the executive director of medical education for Sanford Health and also an assistant professor within the department of family medicine at the Sanford School of Medicine.  A Sioux Falls native, Dr. Bialas has worked in healthcare since 2001.  Dr. Bialas had the pleasure of attending the 2011 HOSA National Conference in California, and was convinced that HOSA would inspire South Dakota students to pursue careers in healthcare.

  • Dr. Susan Anderson

    Family Physician-Sanford Health
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    Susan Anderson has been a family physician for 13 years.  She is Vice-Chairman and Associate Professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the University of South Dakota Sanford School of Medicine.  She is the Director of the Frontier And Rural Medicine Program,  the medical school’s rural track.  She has been active in teaching since she was a medical student and resident.  She lives in Canistota, SD and has an outreach clinic in the community and also serves as the medical director of the long-term care facility.  She regularly participates in educational activities at the Canistota Public School.

  • Kim Jensen

    VP Talent Management-Avera Health
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    Kim Jensen is the VP of Talent Management for the Avera Health System.  Her responsibilities include oversight of talent management solutions including workforce initiatives, workforce development, engagement, recruitment, selection and talent management strategy for the health system. Her work history includes 15 years with Avera Sacred Heart in Yankton, SD as the VP of Human Resources and Associate Administrator for the South Dakota Human Services Center.
    Kim is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources, has her Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resource Management and graduate studies at the University of Minnesota in Health Administration. 

  • Veronica Schmidt

    CEO Custer Regional Hospital
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    Veronica Schmidt has worked in healthcare since 1995 in various capacities.  She earned her Bachelor’s Degree from The University of South Dakota; Master’s Degree in Social Work (MSW) from the University of Nebraska-Omaha; and Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA) from The University of South Dakota.  She has served as the CEO at Custer Regional Hospital since 2011.

  • Josh Hall

    Principal at Sioux Falls CTE Academy
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    Mr. Josh Hall is the Principal of the Career and Technical Education Academy in the Sioux Falls School District. Prior to his current position, Josh served as Assistant Superintendent (Sioux Falls School District), Middle School Principal (Sioux Falls School District), Middle School Assistant Principal (Sioux Falls School District), and Career and Technical Education Teacher (Rapid City, Brandon Valley, and Sioux Falls).

    Josh earned his Bachelor’s Degree (BSED) from Black Hills State University; Master’s Degree in education (MSCI) from Black Hills State University; and Educational Specialist Degree (Ed. S.) in Secondary School Administration from the University of South Dakota. Josh also earned his School Superintendent certification through the University of South Dakota.

    Outside of work, Mr. Hall enjoys spending time with his wife Heather, who is a Special Education teacher, and his three children Carter (13), Berklee (8), and Hadlee (2). Josh also enjoys golfing when he gets an opportunity to do so.

  • Sandy Viau-Williams

    Executive Director- YR AHEC
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    Sandy Viau Williams began working in health care in 2001 at Landmann-Jungman Memorial Hospital in Scotland, SD. There she managed human resources, physician recruitment, clinic manager, grants management.  Currently, Sandy divides her time as the Director of Avera Education and Staffing Solutions as well as the Executive Director of the Yankton Rural Area Health Education Center (AHEC).

  • Kara Schweitzer

    Health Science Development Specialist/CTE Education
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    Kara Schweitzer is the East Central Region Career and Technical Education Specialist with the Division of Career and Technical Education for the South Dakota Department of Education.  She is also the cluster specialist for the Health Science and Information Technology Career Clusters.  Prior to her work with the DOE, she worked in the public school system.

    Kara has a degree in Marketing from Southeast Technical Institute and a degree in Public Service and Leadership from Dakota Wesleyan University.

  • Josie Petersen

    South Dakota Healthcare Workforce Center
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    Josie Petersen is the Manager of the South Dakota Healthcare Workforce Center which is a part of the South Dakota Department of Health, Office of Rural Health.  She oversees numerous programs including workforce development projects, the Healthcare Workforce Report, recommendations from the Governor’s Primary Care Task Force, South Dakota Healthcare Workforce Initiative newsletters, and Emergency Medical Services leadership trainings.  Prior to this work, Josie was the Primary Care Program Coordinator and has expertise in areas such as healthcare recruitment programs, federal healthcare designations, and community assessments. Josie graduated from the University of South Dakota. She enjoys living in Pierre with her husband and two children.

  • Tom Schmidt

    First Premier Bankcard Vice President - Credit Services
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    Tom has been involved in business for over 30 years. Twenty-eight of those years have been spent in supervision and managerial positions. Tom is a proactive advocate on multiple boards. He is passionate towards giving time to the common cause. One, in which HOSA, obviously, belongs.

  • Carletta Hauck

    Executive Director- SD Academy of Family Physicians
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