SIOUX FALLS—First PREMIER Bank and PREMIER Bankcard are pleased to announce 32 students have been selected to receive a $2,000 PREMIER Community or PREMIER Employee Scholarship.
“PREMIER believes one of the best investments it can make is in the future workforce and future leaders of South Dakota,” said First PREMIER Bank CEO Dana Dykhouse. “These scholarship awards help provide higher education opportunities to those who may not be able to afford it otherwise,” said Dykhouse.
For the 2023/2024 school year, PREMIER awarded 16 Community Scholarships to students planning to attend a South Dakota college, university or technical school. It also awarded 16 scholarships to high school seniors with a parent or guardian working at PREMIER.
“Research has shown university or technical education opens doors for students to achieve higher-paying jobs, career advancement, stability and in general experience more overall life satisfaction,” said Dykhouse.
In 2021, PREMIER and its leadership provided a $100 million lead gift to establish the Freedom Scholarship, South Dakota’s first needs-based award. In 2022, First PREMIER Bank and PREMIER Bankcard committed another $50 million to the scholarship endowment. In the first year, more than 1,200 students accepted a Freedom Scholarship.
In 2015, to help address a shortage of skilled workers in South Dakota, PREMIER partnered with the state to establish the Build Dakota Scholarship. Build Dakota provides a full-ride technical college scholarship to students in exchange for three years of work in a high-need field. The 2023/2024 school year marks the 9th cohort of the program, which is now funded in part by industries in the state.
You will also find PREMIER on the campuses of public and private universities. It has helped fund the construction of athletic and education facilities on the campuses of the University of South Dakota, South Dakota State University, Dakota State University, Black Hills State University, Augustana University and Lake Area Technical College in South Dakota, as well as Dordt University in Sioux Center, Iowa.
“We feel it’s our duty to ensure the next generation of South Dakotans and Americans are well-educated and well-equipped to handle anything the future holds,” concluded Dykhouse.
You can see a full list of the 2023 recipients here.