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Spearfish High School Student Offered Appointment to U.S. Air Force Academy

Sierra Hillard received a nomination from Rounds

WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) today announced Spearfish High School student Sierra Hillard has received a fully qualified offer of appointment to the U.S. Air Force Academy, which she intends to accept. Sierra is the daughter of Sue Hillard of Whitewood, SD, and the granddaughter of former South Dakota Lt. Governor Carole Hillard. Sierra was nominated to the Air Force Academy by Rounds.


“We congratulate Sierra on this incredible accomplishment,” said Rounds. “Receiving an offer of acceptance to our nation’s service academies is not easy. Sierra has worked very hard in school--she is graduating from Spearfish High School in January 2019 and will graduate from Black Hills State University with an Associate Degree in Applied Health Sciences this month. She is a member of the National Honor Society and the varsity track team, and is involved in volunteer work in her community. We wish her all the best at the Air Force Academy.”


“I am thankful for the opportunity to represent South Dakota at the United States Air Force Academy,” said Hillard. “The nomination and appointment are truly a reflection of my outstanding teachers and mentors. After attending summer programs at each academy, I was quite impressed with the scientific research options for Air Force cadets. I hope other students will recognize this amazing opportunity and challenge themselves to ‘aim high.’”


Each year, Rounds is able to nominate a select group of eligible students from South Dakota to attend our nation’s four service academies: The U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, U.S. Military Academy at West Point and the U.S. Naval Academy. More information about the nomination process and eligibility requirements can be found here.