Releases

Outstanding Drury faculty & students recognized at opening convocation

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 21, 2014 — Drury University recognized outstanding faculty and second year students at the 2014 Matriculation Convocation this morning. The event served as the formal opening ceremony for the Drury’s 141st academic year, with an address from the president and the raising of the Class of 2018 flag.

President David Manuel told the first-year students in attendance that the journey to career success is a long one, and likened Drury to a base camp where they’ll begin their ascent.

“The liberation of your thinking is fundamental to your ultimate success as you reach the summit,” he said, “and the faculty are here to help you on your way.”

A student and faculty committee selects recipients of the Faculty Awards. The committee receives nominations from students, faculty, administrators and alumni. Each of the honorees is recognized for challenging, engaging and inspiring students both inside and outside the classroom.

  • Faculty Award for Teaching – Daniel Ponder, Ph.D., Professor of Political Science
  • Faculty Award for Scholarship – Madhuri Manpadi, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Chemistry
  • Faculty Award for Leadership – Kevin Jansen, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Biology
  • Faculty Award for Liberal Learning – Raymond Patton, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of History & Modern European Studies Director
  • Faculty Awards for Advising – Leah Blakey, Ph.D., Associate Professor of History and Wesley Rowley, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Biology

In addition, the Judge Warren White Scholars were honored at the Matriculation Convocation. Each honoree will receive a $275 scholarship. These are the students with the highest grade point averages after completion of their first year at Drury. Warren White graduated from Drury in 1904, and served as a Greene County circuit court judge for 36 years.

The 2014-2015 Judge Warren L. White Scholars, now entering their sophomore year, are:

  • Ashley S. Hesterberg – Nixa, Missouri
  • Corey Burton Marquardt ­– Springfield, Missouri
  • Fahad Paler Alkhaldi – Las Pinas City, Philippines
  • Lara Sophia Muller – Marklohe, Germany
  • Laura Alexandra Spraggins – Camdenton, Missouri
  • Nicholette Mae Andersen – Walnut Grove, Missouri
  • Olivia Rose Willoughby – Fort Leavenworth, Kansas
  • Trent Witten Ledbetter – Camdenton, Missouri
  • Trey Weston Hufham – Rogersville, Missouri
  • Seth Adu Amankrah – Doha, Quatar
  • Swapnaneel Nath – West Bengal, India
  • Yuchen Kang – Bejing, China

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Drury named a “Best In the Midwest” college by Princeton Review

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 21, 2014 —Drury University has once again been named one of the best colleges in the Midwest by The Princeton Review. The education services company included Drury in its online listing for “2015 Best Colleges: Region by Region.”

In its profile on Drury, The Princeton Review commends the school for its small class sizes, academic rigor, the individualized mentorship students receive from professors, and the fact that more than half of undergraduate students study abroad.

The Princeton Review editors narrowed their choices based on institutional data collected directly from colleges in each region, staff visits to schools over the years and the opinions of college counselors and advisors. Crucially, the selections also take into account what students at the schools report to The Princeton Review about their experiences in an 80-question survey.

“Only schools that permit us to independently survey their students are eligible to be considered for our regional ‘best’ lists,” says Robert Franek, Princeton Review’s Senior Vice President and Publisher.

“It is always powerful and gratifying when students are the ones touting what the University has to offer,” said Drury President Dr. David Manuel. “Small class sizes, the highest quality academic offerings and engaged learning are all recognized by our students as key to their success.”

The Princeton Review asks students to rate their schools on several issues – from the accessibility of their professors to the quality of their science lab facilities – and answer questions about themselves, their fellow students and their campus life. Comments from surveyed students are quoted in the school profiles on The Princeton Review site. Students remarked that Drury “has the mission to give students the opportunity to fight for what they believe in, but to understand the views of others as well;” and “the relationships I’ve developed with my professors are just as important to me as the relationships I’ve developed with my peers.”

The “Best Colleges: Region by Region” lists are designed to offer guidance to the growing number of prospective college students and parents seeking colleges closer to home, with an emphasis on academic excellence, Franek says. The Princeton Review does not rank the colleges in its “Region by Region” list hierarchically or in various categories. The 648 colleges named in the North, South, Midwest and West regions constitute about 25 percent of the nation’s 2,500 four-year colleges.

The Princeton Review is an education services company known for its test-prep courses, tutoring, books, and other student resources. The Company is not affiliated with Princeton University and it is not a magazine. The Princeton Review is headquartered in Natick, MA.  For more information, visit www.princetonreview.com and www.facebook.com/ThePrincetonReview.

Media Contacts for The Princeton Review: Kristen O’Toole, The Princeton Review, (888) 347-7737, ext. 1405 and kotoole@review.com; or Jeanne Krier, Princeton Review Books, (212) 539-1350.

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New Drury students move in and dive into service

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 12, 2014 — Drury University will welcome the newest members of the Drury family to campus later this week as freshmen move into residence halls and begin to learn what it means to be a Panther.

President David Manuel, along with faculty, staff and upperclassmen will help the new students move their belongings into the residence halls on Friday morning. Parents and students will say their goodbyes on the Kellogg Green that afternoon, and a weekend of orientation will follow.

Orientation ends on Monday with two events that have become a Drury tradition – the community-wide Service Plunge and an on-campus celebration capped off by a fireworks show.

Media are invited to cover any and all events throughout the weekend. Contact Media Relations Director Mike Brothers for more information about the schedule.

Friday, Aug. 15

  • 8 a.m. to noon – New students move into residence halls. The best time for photos, video and interviews is typically between 9 and 10:30 a.m.
  • 3:45 to 5 p.m. – Parent Orientation & Core 101 Classes. All freshmen are required to take this course, which helps them develop the abilities needed for success in college and in life. A student’s CORE 101 professor is not only the instructor for the course, but is also the student’s academic advisor.
  • 7 p.m. – Hard CORE challenge. Each CORE class competes in fun competitive activities, with the winning team earning gift cards. This is a great time for student interviews and shots of the incoming class in action.

Saturday, Aug. 16

• Students will explore Springfield at the following times and locations:

o   4 to 5:30 p.m. – Ice Skating and Broomball at Mediacom Ice Park

o   9 to 11 p.m. – Bowling and pizza at Enterprise Lanes

Sunday, Aug. 17

  • 1 to 2 p.m. – Student Activities Fair at O’Reilly Family Event Center
  • 2 to 5 p.m. – Springfield Cardinals baseball game at Hammons Field
  • 6 to 8 p.m. – Dinner and dessert at various faculty members’ homes in the nearby Midtown neighborhood. Faculty and freshman available for interviews.

Monday, Aug. 18

  • 9:15 a.m. to noon – More than 20 Community Service Plunge projects at various locations across Springfield, including:

o   Maintenance projects at Rare Breed Outreach Center

o   Creating motivational signs at Boys & Girls Club

o   Warehouse work at Convoy of Hope

o   Sorting food donations at Ozarks Food Harvest

o   Gardening work for the DIRT Project at the corner of Benton and Division

  • 6:30 to 9 p.m. – Finale celebration at the fountains in front of Findlay Student Center. Fireworks begin at 9 p.m. at adjacent Sunderland Field.

Classes begin on Monday, Aug. 18 at 5 p.m. for evening and graduate classes. Students in the traditional Day School start classes on Tuesday, Aug. 19.

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Drury & OTC collaborate to develop A.A. in Behavioral Sciences

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 6, 2014 — Ozarks Technical Community College (OTC) and Drury University have partnered to develop an Associate of Arts in Behavioral Sciences degree program at OTC. The A.A. in Behavioral Sciences seamlessly transfers to Drury’s Behavioral Sciences program and launches in the fall of 2014.

The A.A. in Behavioral Sciences includes coursework in psychology, criminology and sociology. It was designed to meet Drury’s requirements for students majoring in behavioral science disciplines. Although the program incorporated courses OTC currently offered, it also required OTC to develop new courses to meet Drury’s curricular expectations. New courses offered by OTC for the A.A. in Behavioral Sciences include Psychology 210 – Research Methods, Psychology 220 – Statistics for Behavioral Sciences, and Sociology 215 – Deconstructing Social Problems.

Linda Caldwell, OTC department chair of psychology and criminology, and Vickie Luttrell, Drury department chair of behavioral sciences, led the collaborative efforts between OTC and Drury.

“OTC’s new degree meets the needs of students who have a strong interest in working with people, but don’t feel called to work in medical or educational fields,” said Caldwell. “The new A. A. in Behavioral Sciences creates a pathway for students to seamlessly transfer to psychology, criminology and sociology majors for their bachelor’s degree while being qualified to find entry-level employment once they graduate with the A.A. in Behavioral Sciences.”

“Drury is excited to collaborate with OTC and help students achieve a bachelor’s degree in the behavioral sciences,” said Luttrell. “We already have outstanding transfer students in our department, and many are from OTC. This collaboration will open up even more opportunities for them.”

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SIVA & ideaXfactory partner to host Italian art group’s workshop

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 5, 2014 — Drury’s Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA) is partnering with ideaXfactory to bring an Italian arts group to Springfield for a free public workshop this weekend.

The group is called Radical Intention, and it will hold a workshop titled “Learning With Each Other” at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 9, at the ideaXfactory, 351 N. Boonville Ave.

Radical Intention uses research-driven approaches and actively involves attendees in its workshops in order to foster a group learning experience. “Learning with Each Other” intends to raise such questions as: Can the simple act of gathering be the basis for discovering and articulating new possibilities? What makes a group work? What determines consensus?

This workshop is co-presented by ideaXfactory and the Summer Institute for Visual Arts at Drury University, with support by GAI – Associazione per il Circuito dei Giovani Artisti Italiani and ArtPlace America.

More information about Radical Intention can be found at http://radicalintention.wordpress.com.  Information about SIVA can be found at www.drury.edu/siva. For more about ideaXfactory, go to http://ideaxfactory.com.

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SIVA showcases work by students set to earn Master of Arts degrees

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., July 28, 2014 — The public can see a diverse array of artwork from Drury University’s Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA) this weekend during a thesis exhibition by graduating students and an open studios event.

Since 2007, SIVA has offered students an opportunity to earn a Master of Arts degree by working alongside visiting artists in a critically driven environment. Participants study under the guidance of visiting artist fellows, faculty and staff, who provide first-hand understanding of contemporary art issues. The program – a unique model in the Midwest – allows students to earn a Master of Arts in Studio Art and Theory over the course of three two-month summer sessions.

MART Thesis Exhibition

A thesis exhibition of artwork created this summer by students graduating from the MA in Studio Art and Theory (MART) program will be held from 7 to 10 p.m., Friday, Aug. 1 at the Drury on C-Street Gallery, 233. E. Commercial St., with additional hours from 1 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 2.

The MART Thesis Exhibition is the culminating event of the three-summer program in which students explore and develop a self-directed, intensive studio practice. Work presented in the Thesis Exhibition is wide-ranging in form, material and theme, and reflects a curriculum that supports multidisciplinary and individualized approaches. It is a wonderful opportunity to see the work of an imaginative and innovative group of emerging artists in the region.

This year’s MART Thesis Exhibition features work by: Suzanne Axon, Matej Baran, Carlynn Forst, Jan Gill, Thomas Primm, Jennifer Rice, Dina Shisler, Bill Shultz, Kelli Stricklin and Lee VonAllmen.

SIVA Open Studios

SIVA Open Studios will be held from 1 to 5 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 2 at the Pool Art Center, 940 N. Clay St. Open Studios is a new annual event that opens up the Summer Institute for Visual Arts to the public and features work from all participants. It is an exciting opportunity to meet the program’s vibrant and diverse community of artists, witness their process, and see what work has been created during the summer.

More information about SIVA can be found at www.drury.edu/siva. Photos showing the wide array of creativity at work during SIVA are being uploaded regularly at www.flickr.com/photos/siva-mart.

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Gifted summer camps culminate in projects, demos this week

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., July 21, 2014 — Academically gifted students from across the Midwest are once again on the Drury University campus for the summer’s second round of camps aimed specifically at this high-achieving group.

This time around it’s middle- and high-school age students who are in camps organized by Drury’s Center for Gifted Education. Activities for pre-K and elementary school students took place in June.

The camps – called Summerscape for middle schoolers and Drury Leadership Academy (DLA) for high schoolers – allow students to take two weeks of in-depth classes and go hands-on in areas that interest them such as robotics, photography and videography, improv comedy, bio-ethics, world culture and much more. They are considered “pre-college” camps in that students live on campus and participate in activities ranging from games to lectures in the evenings. DLA students can potentially earn college credit for completion.

“The camps not only give this particular group of students the kind of enrichment they crave, but they also provide them with a sense of community and give them a taste of what life is like on a college campus,” says Mary Potthoff, Director of the Center for Gifted Education at Drury.

Summerscape and DLA are now in their second week. Media are invited to cover the camps this week as several performances and demonstrations take place. These include:

Tuesday, July 22

DLA students will compete in an “Iron Chef” style cooking competition as part of class on learning healthy lifestyle habits for college. The contest will take place at 11 a.m. at 1214 N. Summit Ave. Instructor: John Post.

Summerscape students taking a class in aerodynamics will be building model airplane fuselages at 10 a.m. in Lay Hall room 211, and then demonstrate high-pressure water rockets at 11 a.m., at Sunderland Field (green space south of Sunderland Hall). Instructor: Asikaa Cosgrove.

A large service project involving all DLA campers will take place from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Boyd Elementary, 1409 N. Washington Ave., just north of the Drury campus. DLA participants will work on major projects such as installing a track, helping with the remodel of the school library and more. The service project is organized by a group of longtime DLA students returning for a final year of camp following high school graduation.

Wednesday, July 23

DLA students studying slam poetry will hold a poetry slam for the public at 1:30 p.m. at the Park Central Branch Library, 128 Park Central Square downtown. Instructor: Gretchen Teague.

Summerscape students studying Rube Goldberg machines will put together and demonstrate a large device in the zany Goldberg style from 9 a.m. to noon in the lobby of Findlay Student Center. Instructor: Darline Taylor.

Drury has been a national leader in providing education and enrichment programs for academically gifted students more than 30 years. The Drury Center for Gifted Education is the most complete center for gifted education in the state of Missouri and is one of less than 20 complete gifted education centers in the United States. Visit Drury Gifted Education for more information.

Opportunities for coverage are available each day of the camps. For more information on these and other opportunities this week and next week, contact Mary Potthoff at (417) 885-8089 or (417) 873-7386.

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Summer Institute for Visual Arts offers free public lectures, workshops

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., July 15, 2014 — Now in its seventh year, the Summer Institute for Visual Arts is in full swing across the Drury University campus. Several upcoming events are free and open to the public, including lectures, open studio demonstrations and displays.

Established in 2007, the Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA) at Drury University provides an intensive two-month period each summer that allows students to focus on artistic development in a critically driven environment. Participants study under the guidance of visiting artist fellows, faculty and staff, who provide first-hand understanding of contemporary art issues. The program – a unique model in the Midwest – allows students to earn a Master of Arts in Studio Art and Theory over the course of three two-month summer sessions.

SIVA is under new leadership this year, as Sarrita Hunn takes the reigns from founder and longtime professor of art and art history Tom Parker. Hunn earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from Drury in 2001, majoring in Studio Art, Art History and Philosophy. She earned a Master of Fine Arts from California College of the Arts in San Francisco in 2004. She is also currently the residency program director for the Luminary in St. Louis, and co-founder and managing editor of art criticism website Temporary Art Review.

“I am very excited to join such an innovative graduate art program,” Hunn said. “With our new visiting artist fellows structure, we are bringing in artists teaching at the best graduate programs across the country and Europe to work with our students.”

Opportunities for the public

The public can hear from visiting artist fellows Andrea Polli and James Gobel this week at two open lectures presenting their work, and go “hands-on” with Polli at an upcoming workshop called “Art & Biology: High Tea.” Biographical information about Polli and Gobel can be found online.

Andrea Polli will give a presentation about her work at 11:30 a.m., Wednesday, July 16 in the Olin Room (lower level) at the Olin Library. Polli is an artist working at the intersection of art, science and technology whose practice includes media installation, public interventions, curating and directing art and community projects and writing. She holds the Mesa Del Sol Endowed Chair of Digital Media at the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque.

James Gobel will give a presentation about his work at 11:30 a.m., Wednesday, July 23 in the Olin Room (lower level) at the Olin Library.  Gobel creates paintings made of felt, yarn and other fabrics that refer to a range of artistic movements. He is currently an Associate Professor of MFA Fine Arts and Assistant Chair of the Painting/Drawing Program at California College of the Arts in San Francisco.

“Art & Biology: High Tea,” a hands-on workshop and social gathering exploring the beauty of art and biology, will be held from 1 to 5 p.m., Thursday, July 17 in the Trustee Science Center, Botany Laboratory Room 142. Modeled after a traditional British “high tea,” participants will enjoy relaxing conversation, snacks and refreshing tea. Participants will also learn about groundbreaking and sometimes shocking biology and bio-art projects from all over the world, view a range of microscopic life, extract caffeine from tea using state-of-the-art science laboratory equipment, and more. No prior science experience is necessary. For your safety please wear closed-toe shoes and cover your legs (long pants) and arms. Space is limited to 20 people. RSVP at andrea@andreapolli.com.

More information about SIVA can be found at www.drury.edu/siva. Photos showing the wide array of creativity at work during SIVA are being uploaded regularly at www.flickr.com/photos/siva-mart.

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Two architecture alumni recognized as emerging leaders by the AIA

SPRINGFIELD, MO., July 2, 2014 — The American Institute of Architects (AIA), the industry’s leading professional membership organization, has recognized two Drury University Hammons School of Architecture alumni as young leaders in the field.

Evelyn Lee and Jason Dale Pierce were among the 18 recipients of the 2014 Young Architects Award for outstanding leadership and contributions to the architecture profession. They formally received the award in front of their peers at the AIA National Convention in Chicago last week. Lee and Pierce were the only awardees from the same undergraduate university. There are more than 120 accredited architecture programs nationwide.

Shani Barel Photography

Lee, a 2002 graduate, was involved in the AIA student group while she was at Drury and feels she was well-prepared when she entered the architecture profession.

“Drury gave me a well-rounded experience for my career, which was great because I help a lot of different clients,” Lee said. “My involvement with the Drury AIAS chapter definitely contributed to my involvement later on with AIA, too.”

Lee currently works for MKThink, an architecture firm in San Francisco. Lee has also been consistently involved in volunteer leadership service throughout her career and has held elected leadership positions at the AIA on local, regional and national boards. She is the youngest person to serve on AIA National’s Executive Committee. Lee’s work has been published in multiple media outlets, and “has driven the profession in a more environmentally, economically, and socially responsible direction,” according to the AIA.

Jason Pierce

Pierce graduated from Drury in 2000 and currently works in the St. Louis office of architecture firm HOK. Pierce started a Young Architect Forum (YAF) chapter at AIA St. Louis, eventually becoming the YAF liaison for the Central States. He currently serves on the board of AIA St. Louis and is a member of the advisory group of the AIA National Practice Management Knowledge Community.

“This important national recognition for Evelyn and Jason is evidence of something we’ve known for some time: Hammons School of Architecture graduates have a talent for leadership — which often gives them advantages as they progress through their professional lives,” says Dr. Robert Weddle, interim director of the Hammons School.

Established in 1984, the Hammons School of Architecture is an accredited five-year professional degree program offering a Master of Architecture degree. The required architecture courses are integrated with the liberal arts curriculum of the university, which prepares students for a professional architectural practice within the broadest possible educational context.

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Drury Scholars prepares African-American students for college

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 23, 2014 — This weekend Drury Scholars began its seventh summer of providing academic and cultural enrichment for local African-American middle school and high school students.

The Scholars program began in 2008 with 15 African American males in an attempt to close the racial achievement gap. It has since to expanded to include young females and grown considerably. This year, about 45 students are in the weeklong program.

It began over the weekend with a trip to Little Rock, Arkansas where students explored African-American historical sites such as Little Rock Central High School, a key location in the fight to desegregate public schools in the United States. Throughout this week, the Scholars will focus on college readiness by writing essays for admission and scholarship applications, and studying for the ACT. They’ll meet with local black leaders such as entrepreneur Lyle Foster and former City Council member Denny Whayne. Classes with Drury faculty are also part of the curriculum.

Local students, global impact

This year Drury Scholars is partnering with a Springfield nonprofit project called For Burkina, which is raising funds to build a school in the impoverished West African nation of Burkina Faso. For Burkina is composed of local young professionals, including several recent alumni of Drury’s Hammons School of Architecture, led by Brittany Layton and Benjamin Hall. Its goal is to fund, design and build a three-classroom primary school for a rural village that will educate more 120 children a year.

Burkina bricks 3

On Sunday evening, the For Burkina team and the Drury Scholars made clay bricks and mosaic tiles. On Wednesday they will paint the bricks and tiles with patterns and artwork depicting African folk tales starting at 4 p.m. at Pool Art Center. Media are invited to cover the event, as well as the entire Drury Scholars week. The bricks and mosaics will later be made available for purchase online, at First Friday Artwalk and at local retailers. All of the proceeds will go towards the $32,000 cost of building the school in Burkina Faso. Materials and supplies have been donated by local businesses including L&R Specialties, MosaicaRose, National Art Shop and Sapp Design Associates Architects.

“We love the partnership with For Burkina,” said Peter Meidlinger, co-founder of Drury Scholars. “Our students will contribute to funding much-needed schools in Burkina Faso. We will all learn about the desperate need for schools in Burkina and the value of education to young people. We’re excited to be a part of the important work that Brittany Layton and Benjamin Hall are committed to.”

“The For Burkina team is thrilled to be working with local kids in order to fund a school for kids in Burkina Faso,” said Benjamin Hall, co-founder of For Burkina. “To be able to work with my alma mater and to be able to see the enthusiasm and dedication toward not only the For Burkina mission but also toward the Summer Scholars students is encouraging.”

Burkina bricks 2

Drury Scholars will continue throughout the week. For more information about Drury Scholars, contact Dr. Peter Meidlinger, (417) 873-7469, pmeidlin@drury.edu; Francine Pratt, (417) 873-6827, fpratt@drury.edu, or Mike Brothers.

For more information about For Burkina, contact: Benjamin Hall, (417) 227-0045, aschoolforburkinafaso@gmail.com, or go to Facebook.com/ForBurkina.

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