DSU to acquire Health EDventure
By ELISA SAND, Staff Reporter
Dakota State University has announced plans to acquire Health EDventure, a K-12 health and career literacy web site. DSU partnered with the Education Resource Center in the initial creation of the web site in 2005.|
Through the acquisition, DSU will obtain all associated learning materials from Health Edventure with the intent of expanding the availability of the programs to other states across the nation.
"DSU has been associated with this project since 2005, and the program has had such a positive impact in the schools in South Dakota," said Dan Friedrich, director of DSU's Center for Advancement of Health IT. "It is time to let schools in other states have the opportunity to get access to the resources that South Dakota schools have been using for several years."
Friedrich said officials in Kansas, Alaska and New Jersey have expressed interest in the programs.
"We think that it's time to take it beyond the South Dakota market and start to offer it to other states," he said.
Friedrich said existing staff and interns at DSU will work on controlled expansion of the programs into other states.
Marsha Kucker, executive director of the Education Resource Center, said they are pleased DSU is leading this effort going forward.
"This has been an evolving partnership from the beginning," she said.
The Health Edventure site promotes health literacy in K-12 schools with a combination of web and print resources for students, teachers and parents. Cross-curriculum materials are designed to promote healthy habits while students are learning core subjects like math, science, geography and language arts.
A special fourth-grade series called S.D. Road Trip currently has 6,400 participants. This program takes students on a three-month tour across the state, making two stops each week. Through the program, students learn some information about the towns they stop in and their state, as well as a healthy habit.
A Healthy Kidz Club program is available for K-3 students where they discuss health concerns and complete challenges. Another new program launched last fall is called Getting it Together, which is a program geared for middle and high school students.
Friedrich said the program was made possible through a partnership between DSU and the Education Resource Center with support from Avera, as well as federal and private funding.
"This program fits well within the mission of the university," said Stacy Krusemark, DSU vice president of business and administrative services. "With our College of Education, computer graphics programs, and our emphasis on technology and health information, it just makes sense that we expand this project."
The project will continue to be developed at DSU under the direction of Friedrich and will be available outside South Dakota in the near future.
The Education Resource Center of South Dakota is a private non-profit organization formed for the purpose of providing educational services and resources to schools in the state.