Stevens High School (South Dakota)

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Stevens High School
1200 44th Street
Rapid City, SD 57702

United States
Coordinates 44°04′30″N 103°17′23″W / 44.075°N 103.289722°W / 44.075; -103.289722
Type High School
School district Rapid City Area Schools
Principal John Julius
Grades 9-12
Enrollment 1632
Color(s) Blue and Silver
Athletics Track & Field, Cross Country, Tennis, Golf, Wrestling, Soccer, Gymnastics, Football, Basketball
Athletics conference Greater Dakota Conference (GDC)
Mascot Raiders

Stevens High School is one of two public high schools in Rapid City, South Dakota, United States. The school opened in November 1969 and has an enrollment of approximately 1600 students. Renowned for academics, performing arts, and athletics, the school is situated in the foothills of South Dakota's Black Hills on the city's western outskirts. The school colors are blue and silver, and the school teams and organizations are known as the "Raiders", after the mascot known as "The Raider Guy".

Stevens has had 10 students named as U.S. Presidential Scholars since 1970.[1]


The campus includes an 800-seat theater with state-of-the-art computerized lighting and sound equipment, and a college-class gym complex with multiple basketball courts, dedicated wrestling and weight-training facilities. The Carold Heier Gymnasium seating 5,000+ spectators has hosted a national ESPN broadcast, as well as speakers such as George McGovern, Pat Nixon and President Bill Clinton. Stevens is among a handful of high schools anywhere possessing a large concert organ, a three-manual, 88-stop instrument in the Milo Winter Fine Arts Auditorium.

The marching and concert bands received the John Philip Sousa Foundation's Sudler Flag of Honor, an international award recognizing high school concert bands, in 1985. The "Raider Fight Song", written by band composer Paul Yoder, was premiered by the Rapid City High School Band at nearby Mount Rushmore prior to the schools opening with the composer in attendance. The band has performed concerts in several European countries, as well as at the Rose Parade in Pasadena and at Mile High Stadium for the Denver Broncos.

The 120-member Stevens Symphonic Orchestra has qualified the most participants in the South Dakota All-State Orchestra for 31 of the past 34 years, placing 53 members in the 2001 All-State Orchestra.[2] The Stevens Chamber Orchestra won the Gold Medal at the Young Manhattan Music Festival in 1985, receiving a standing ovation from Pulitzer Prize-winning composer, Samuel Adler, who served as head judge. In May 2007, the Jay Sharp Memorial Concert Organ of 100 digital ranks was dedicated in a performance of Saint-Saëns' Organ Symphony #3 featuring organist Justin Matters.

The school also has an up and coming speech and debate team. After posting a few dismal years of near zero membership, new coach Mark Vargo has brought the team lots of individual success, as well as team success at tournaments around the state. The team has also been represented at the National Forensic League's national debate tournament for the past two years.


The athletic teams at Stevens have combined for more state titles than any other South Dakota High School. Stevens has 104 state athletic titles.[2]

In a 2005 Sports Illustrated article, Stevens was identified as the "#1 athletic high school in the state of South Dakota". In this same article, Stevens was picked as the "41st best school nationally for activities" from over 38,000 schools.[3]

A large part of the 104 state championships has been a result of the Raider Girls and Boys track and cross country teams respectively. The girls' track team has won every state title from 1996 through 2008 (13th in 2008).[2] The boys cross country team also won 10 consecutive state cross country titles. The run started in 1995 and went through 2004.[2]


There are many academic events at Stevens including Debate and Knowledge Bowl.

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ U.S. Presidential Scholar Database
  2. ^ a b c d SDHSAA
  3. ^ Sports Illustrated, May 11, 2005 issue

External links[edit]