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 240,000 members. These members belong to one of more than 5200 HOSA chapters existing in 48 states. In academic year 2017-18, 91 scholarships over $950,000 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 18 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(6) and Sutton (4). He relaxes by enjoying a round of golf or a game of basketball.

State Officers

  • Courtney Chrystal

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    Courtney Chrystal is a senior at Dakota Valley High School. Since her freshman year, HOSA has served as an outlet for her curiosity and passion in the healthcare field. She is honored to serve as this year’s president to the organization that forged the path to her future. Courtney hopes to provide unity and collaboration to further accelerate the success of South Dakota HOSA, as our talent and potential was displayed at the 2018 ILC! Outside of HOSA, Courtney is active in things such as Student Council, National Honor Society, Spanish Club and cheerleading. She looks forward to helping all members of South Dakota HOSA realize and implement the limitless potential they possess!

  • Lily Petersen

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    Lily Petersen is a junior at Harrisburg and is serving as our 2018-19 president-elect. She joined HOSA as a freshman, and immediately loved it! She loves taking advantage of all the opportunities that are provided. Lily also adores how all the members want to help and have a passion in serving, in some way, in the medical field. During her term, Lily really wants to focus on making everyone comfortable with speaking up and taking chances. She knows the potential of SD HOSA, and wants to display all that to our fellow chapters outside the state.

    Outside of HOSA, Lily serves as her treasure on her local board. She also participates in student council, national honors society, a Harrisburg student ambassador, and is captain of her soccer team. Lily is very positive and excited about SD HOSA’s future, and is anxious to see what we can do!

  • Jessica Glen

    Social Media/Historian
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    Jessica Glen, a senior at Brandon Valley, is your 2018-2019 South Dakota HOSA Social Media/Historian.  She joined as a freshman and immediately loved being a part of an organization where hundreds of people share the same passion for helping others through the healthcare field.  During her term, Jessica plans to use her social media platform to reach out to other people across the state to get more people involved in HOSA.  She is very thankful for all of the opportunities that HOSA has offered and plans to pursue a career in sports medicine.
    Outside of her state position, Jessica also serves as Brandon Valley’s HOSA president.  She is also involved in National Honor Society, Sanford’s Teen Science Cafe, Collision, and track.  Jessica is very excited to serve for South Dakota’s HOSA and looks forward to her senior year! 

  • Erica Okine

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    Erica is a senior at Dakota Valley High School and South Dakota HOSA’s Secretary for the 2018-19 schoolyear. She joined HOSA her freshman year, and she has loved every moment of it. She hopes to inspire others to pursue careers in the medical field. Erica plans on pursuing a career in pediatrics. Besides HOSA, Erica is involved in cross-country, soccer, National Honor Society, Science Olympiad, and FBLA. She is so excited for the upcoming schoolyear, and she can’t wait to serve you all!

  • Mark Petrasko

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    Mark Petrasko is a junior at O’Gorman High School and South Dakota’s HOSA parliamentarian for 2018-2019. Mark has been a member of HOSA since his freshman year of high school. HOSA has allowed him to explore the many aspects of the healthcare field. Mark hopes to serve others in the future with a career in medicine. Other than HOSA Mark is active in jazz band, knitting club, the bowling team, quiz bowl, and brass choir. Mark is looking forward to helping South Dakota HOSA!

  • Mariah Block

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    Mariah Block, a senior at Watertown High School, is your South Dakota HOSA’s treasurer for the 2018-2019 school year. Mariah plans to use her position as officer to help HOSA grow across the state and encourage smaller schools to get involved. Outside of HOSA, she is part of Student Council, National Honors Society, Key Club, cross country, and track. Mariah’s participation in HOSA has inspired her to pursue a career in the healthcare field and she hopes to serve all of you by passing along that inspiration to others.

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. 

  • 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.

  • 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.

  • Corryn Celmer

    Associate Director YR AHEC
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    Corryn Celmer, MPH, is the Associate Director of Community Programs for the Yankton Rural Area Health Education Center (YRAHEC). At YRAHEC, her responsibilities include engaging students in the K-12 health careers pipeline, engaging community organizations and members in workforce development, and organizing continuing education opportunities for health professionals. Along with her AHEC work, Corryn is the Marketing Specialist for the National AHEC Organization’s CDC funded HPV Immunization Project and works with organizations across the nation to promote HPV vaccination and provider education.
    Corryn is a graduate of the University of South Dakota twice over (B.S. Health Sciences, 2014 & Master of Public Health, 2017) and is one of USD’s 30 under 30 Alumni. She enjoys living in South Dakota and working with a wide range of engaged health professionals.

  • Andrea Knoll

    Associate Director of Community Programs NESD AHEC
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    Andrea Knoll is the Associate Director of Community Programs at Northeast South Dakota Area Health Education Center (NESD AHEC) located in rural Aberdeen, SD. Andrea has worked in the healthcare field since 2002 and has a versatile healthcare background. Along with commitment and engagement, she enjoys working to achieve strategies and leadership in healthcare education and health workplace needs of South Dakota. It is the goal of NESD AHEC to assess and provide the optimum level of health educational services in the surrounding rural counties.

    Andrea graduated from National American University with an Associate’s of Applied Science Degree in Medical Staff Services Management, Bachelor of Science Degree in Healthcare Management, along with a Master of Business Administration with an Emphasis in Health Care Administration. Andrea is also currently licensed as a Nursing Home Administrator with the State of South Dakota.

    Andrea enjoys spending time with her husband (Todd), their two children (Easton and Maci) and their Labrador Retrievers (Tikka and Stryker). Andrea and her family enjoy exploring hunting, fishing, and camping in the great State of South Dakota.

  • Carletta Hauck

    Executive Director- SD Academy of Family Physicians
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