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South dakota

Workforce Success Story Submitted By:
South Dakota Department of Labor


Meet Kelsey

Workforce Challenge

When the staff at the Spearfish DOL Local Office first met Kelsey in 2008, she was a new student at the local alternative high school, living with her mom and learning how to cope with attention deficit disorder. Although she’d had a rough time recently, she wanted to work. Her first job placement was in a seasonal position at a local ski lift.

Workforce Solution

Later, the DOL staff determined WIA would be appropriate for Kelsey and began formal and informal assessments, which revealed her interest in healthcare and a high ranking for spatial ability. To get Kelsey some experience in a healthcare setting, DOL staff searched for a worksite that could accommodate her youth and her limited hours available for work.

The Lead-Deadwood Regional Hospital offered to start her as an office assistant. They were pleased to see that she worked well. Kelsey was able to complete all her high school credits just a few weeks later and was touched when hospital staff held a surprise graduation party for her.

Outcomes & Benefits

The work experience at the hospital was converted to full-time after Kelsey's graduation. The staff arranged for her to do job shadows in a couple of departments. Everyone encouraged her to take further training.

Kelsey completed phlebotomist training this spring with good grades, leading to a job at Rapid City Regional Hospital at $9.75/hour and good benefits. Her next goal is to save her wages until next spring when she will become eligible to take her national certification tests. She wants to cover that cost all by herself.


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