Music professor’s work takes the stage at Edinburgh Festival

Three original works by a Drury music professor are headed to one of the top international music festivals on the planet later this month.

Dr. Carlyle Sharpe’s “Christ Church Mass” and two other pieces have been selected for a live performance at the Edinburgh International Festival in Scotland on Aug. 30.

The event focuses on classical music and opera, and was founded in 1947 as of way of showcasing “the flowering of the human spirit” in the wake of World War II. It grew rapidly and helped spawn dozens of other arts events at the same time, most notably the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, now the world’s largest arts festival.

These events are collectively known as the Edinburgh Festival, and artists whose works are selected for inclusion find themselves in a sought-after spotlight.

Dr. Carlyle Sharpe

Dr. Carlyle Sharpe

“I’ve been very fortunate to have had my works performed in numerous exciting venues, from the Kennedy Center to the International Sacred Music Festival in Riga, Latvia, and the Edinburg Festival is certainly included in those,” says Sharpe, who is professor of music composition and theory.

“Christ Church Mass” was written for Christ Episcopal Church in Springfield and performed there at the 2013 Easter service. It has since become a regular part of the church’s repertoire. Sharpe is a longtime member of the church’s choir.

“The work consists of the typical movements – Kyrie, Gloria, Sanctus, Agnus Dei – performed in the context of a service,” Sharpe says. “Although it can be performed at any time, I added brass quintet and timpani to the standard organ part so that it could be performed for larger, more celebratory occasions such as Easter.”

The other pieces are “Flourishes,” a work for brass quintet and organ and “Laudate Nomen,” a festive work for chorus and organ.

They will be performed at the Church of St. John the Evangelist, an Episcopal Church in Edinburgh.

“Sacred music, in particular, has been a big part of my experience, because as a life-long Episcopalian, music of high quality historically plays a large role in the Episcopal Church,” he says.


Story by Mike Brothers, Drury’s director of media relations.

More than 50 Drury graduate degrees to be conferred Sunday

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 12, 2015 — A hooding and conferral ceremony will take place at 1 p.m., Sunday, August 16 at Stone Chapel to recognize 53 students earning graduate degrees from Drury University.

The College of Graduate Studies offers master’s degrees in business administration, communication, education, teaching, and studio art & theory. A graduate education provides opportunities to further one’s career and deepen ties to others in a student’s professional field.

Graduate programs at Drury feature flexibility so that students can pursue a degree in a timeframe that works best for them. Courses are offered in the evenings, online, and in alternative formats such as blended learning, weekend experiences, and 8-week or 16-week courses.

“The quality, rigor and relevance of Drury’s master’s programs set them apart,” says Dr. Regina Waters, Dean of the College of Graduate Studies. “Our small class sizes, outstanding faculty, and curricular innovations provide students with a powerful and rewarding graduate education.”

For more information, visit


Media Contact: Dr. Regina Waters – Dean, College of Graduate Studies. Office: (417) 873-7251; email:

Move-in day, Orientation & Service Plunge: What it means to be a Panther

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 12, 2015 — The newest members of the Drury family arrive on campus this weekend as freshmen move into residence halls and begin to learn what it means to be a Panther.

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.

These four days are an excellent opportunity to speak to students during their orientation experience and capture some great visuals, as seen in videos about Move-In Day and the Service Plunge & School Year Kick-Off Celebration from 2014.

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

Friday, Aug. 14

  • 8 a.m. to noon – New students move into residence halls. The best time for photos, video and interviews is typically between 8:30 and 10:30 a.m.
  • 3:15 p.m. – Parent & Student goodbyes at Kellogg Green. This is the point at which parents and students split up after move-in day before families attend a presentation for parents and students join their CORE classes to begin their four-day orientation.
  • 5:15 p.m. – “Welcome to College” presentation by Dr. Will Keim, award-winning national speaker and humorist, at Clara Thompson Hall. Keim is a regular at this event and gave a memorable commencement speech at Drury in May.
  • 7 p.m. – Hard CORE challenge at Sunderland Field. Each CORE class competes in fun competitive activities.
  • 8:15 p.m. – Campus Safety Orientation at Clara Thompson Hall.

Sunday, Aug. 16

  • Noon – Student Activities Fair at Findlay Student Center.
  • 6 to 8 p.m. – Dinner and dessert at various faculty members’ homes in the nearby Midtown neighborhood. Faculty and freshman are available for interviews during this uniquely Drury event.

Monday, Aug. 17

  • 10 a.m. to noon – More than 20 Community Service Plunge projects at various locations across Springfield, including:
    • Food packaging and shoe sorting at Convoy of Hope
    • Sorting and packaging food donations at Ozarks Food Harvest
    • Turning over crops at Urban Roots Farm
    • Painting, indoor/outdoor maintenance and cleaning at Harmony House
    • Gardening, cleaning, organizing and building maintenance at Rare Breed
  • 7 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.

Evening classes begin at 5 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 17. Students in the traditional Day School will begin classes on Tuesday, Aug. 18.


Media Contact: Mike Brothers, Director of Media Relations. Office: (417) 873-7390; mobile: (417) 894-9064; email:

Springfield-Drury Civic Orchestra Announces 2015-16 Season

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 10, 2015 — The nationally recognized Springfield-Drury Civic Orchestra has announced its 2015-16 season. The season opening concert will be held at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, September 12 at the Evangel University Chapel Auditorium. The concert will feature music by Respighi, Dvorak and Tchaikovsky.

“If you like the Pines of Rome, you’ll love Respighi’s Church Windows, a colossal work written at the height of the composer’s powers,” says Christopher Koch, music director. “We’ll also be joined by the amazing David Hays, concertmaster of the Springfield Symphony and professor of violin at Missouri State University, for the beloved Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto.”

This season will mark a new partnership between the SDCO and Springfield Regional Opera, of which Koch is also music director. The second concert on Saturday, October 3 is “A Gala Evening with the Springfield Regional Opera.” This collaboration with the SRO celebrates 35 years of opera in the Ozarks and will feature local and international opera stars. The concert will be held at 7:30 p.m. at Drury’s Clara Thompson Hall.

The New Year brings a “Concert of Serenades” on Sunday, January 31, 2016. This concert includes the rarely heard Serenade No. 2 by Johannes Brahms, one of the composer’s favorite works. It begins at 4 p.m. at Drury’s Clara Thompson Hall.

The season ends with the “Finale Concert” on Saturday, April 23 at 7:30 p.m. in the Evangel Chapel Auditorium. This concert features the Charles R. Hall Young Artist winner, excerpts of William Walton’s epic Symphony No. 1, and Respighi’s Fountains of Rome.

General admission for all events except the Gala is $12 for adults, $6 for students with ID, children 10 and under free. Tickets for the Oct. 3 SRO Gala are $20, and available online at Season ticket information is available at


Smith-Glynn-Callaway Foundation supports pre-med students via grants

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 5, 2015 — Drury University has received $14,000 in scholarship and research grants from the Smith-Glynn-Callaway Medical Foundation in support of the two organizations’ shared goal of promoting education in the medical field in the Ozarks.

The Foundation has once again awarded $10,000 for scholarships to students in Drury’s pre-health sciences programs. This relationship dates back more than 40 years, with proven results. More than half of those who have received Smith-Glynn-Callaway Pre-Med Undergraduate Scholarships in the last 10 years have attended, or are already accepted to, medical school. Other recipients have gone on to careers in nursing or as physician assistants.

This year the Foundation has given an additional $4,000 to fund summer research conducted by undergraduate students under the direction of assistant professor of chemistry Dr. Madhuri Manpadi. The research is focused on compounds that will help facilitate the discovery of new anti-cancer agents. Previous work on this project has been published in journals such as Organic Letters, Journal of Organic Chemistry, and others; and has been presented at American Chemical Society national and regional meetings.

Senior Kevin Liles prepares compounds for imaging in a nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer as part of undergraduate research work funded by a grant from the Smith-Glynn-Callaway Foundation.

Senior Kevin Liles prepares compounds for characterizing in a nuclear magnetic resonance spectrometer as part of undergraduate research work funded by a grant from the Smith-Glynn-Callaway Foundation.

“We have students from the sophomore to senior levels conducting this work,” Dr. Manpadi said. “These aspiring doctors and scientists are learning and applying various chemistry techniques, and will have an opportunity to see their work published in international journals.”

“We are thankful for the Smith-Glynn-Callaway Foundation’s support of Drury’s pre-med students,” said Dr. Mark Wood, chair of the Pre-Health Sciences Program. “Their support of these talented undergraduates stretches beyond financial consideration. It truly helps shape the health care community of the future. Smith-Glynn-Callaway funding ensures Drury students will continue on their journey to be future health care providers here in Springfield, across Missouri, and beyond.”


Media Contact: Dr. Mark Wood – Chair, Pre-Health Sciences Program. Office: (417) 873-7474. Email:

Drury professor revels in discoveries, connections to Pluto mission

You can call it a planet, a dwarf planet, or even a ball of ice. But to Dr. Greg Ojakangas, there’s no doubt about what to call Pluto: “Amazingly beautiful.”

Ojakangas, an associate professor of physics at Drury, was one of millions around the world fascinated by the prospect of seeing Pluto up close as NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft recently flew by the icy outpost at a distance of just 7,800 miles.

Color-corrected image of Pluto from New Horizons. (NASA)

Color-corrected image of Pluto from New Horizons. (NASA)

“This is a part of the universe no human has ever seen before,” he says. “It’s not often that you’re able to see, for first time, something no human eyes have ever seen.”

Ojakangas has a deep professional interest in New Horizons. His doctoral work examined the large moons of Jupiter, and the remarkable manner in which such worlds can have orbits that are synchronized with each other, providing power for volcanic eruptions and other fascinating dynamical phenomena.  In a similar manner, it was recently discovered that three of Pluto’s 5 moons are also synchronized.  “The staggering beauty of these phenomena is beyond words,”  Ojakangas says.  New Horizons is yielding incredible new information about Pluto’s five moons.

Greg Ojakangas

Greg Ojakangas

But Ojakangas also has a personal connection. The former finalist in NASA’s astronaut selection program knows many of the researchers working on the New Horizons team. He’s thrilled to see the work of colleagues pay off after the probe launched from Earth more than nine years ago. The results have been spectacular, he says.

“As is usually the case when we see a new planetary body, it’s surpassing our expectations in terms of discoveries,” he says.

Glaciers of nitrogen, mountains as high as those in the Sierra Nevada, a mysterious source of geologic heat and even a faint comet-like tail were some of the revelations beamed back to NASA from the spacecraft. For scientists like Ojakangas, the discoveries are not unlike going down the proverbial rabbit hole from “Alice in Wonderland.”

“The laws of physics are the same but the substances are all different, and it’s surprising everybody,” he says. “We love that kind of thing because we learn from it.”

And the lessons aren’t confined to the edge of the solar system.

“To understand our Earth better, we should do everything we can to understand other planets,” he says. “They’re ready-made laboratories for testing our understanding of how the materials of the universe behave.”


Story by Mike Brothers, Drury director of media relations. A version of this story originally appeared in the Springfield News-Leader.

Alumni Council welcomes five new members for 2015-16

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., July 30, 2015 — Drury University recently welcomed five new members to its Alumni Council.

The Alumni Council is the governing body of the Drury Alumni Association and consists of 23 alumni leaders from a range of class years, a member from the Drury faculty and a member from the administrative staff. The Council plans and supports programs such as Reunion Weekend, Homecoming, the Distinguished Alumni Awards and much more. The Council members also play important roles as representatives of Drury in their communities.

The new members for 2015-16 are:



Joann Dahlke Banner, a 1974 Drury graduate, earned her degree in Home Economics. She is a self-employed bookkeeper at her own company, which services several companies in the Springfield area. She is married to Gary Banner, a fellow Drury graduate and former Alumni Council member. She is an active member of Wesley United Methodist Church and a frequent volunteer at Ronald McDonald House.



Kim McCully-Mobley, a current adjunct faculty member with Drury University and Crowder College, graduated from Drury with a Bachelor of Arts in English in 1994 and a Master’s in Education in 2000. She currently works as an educator at Aurora High School as well as freelance writer. She writes for several publications around the Midwest and owns a small, home-based publishing company called The Ozarkian Spirit.

Mickey Moore

Mickey Moore

Mickey Moore earned business and economics degrees from Drury in 1995 and an MBA from Drury in 2002. Originally from Vancouver, British Columbia, Mickey is now an active Springfield entrepreneur, owning and operating Employee Screening Services of Missouri since 2007, and purchasing Summit Safety Group in 2014. Moore has been an active Drury alumnus for several years, including participation in #DruryBusinessNetwork events and with the Breech School of Business.  He is also actively involved in multiple non-profit and civic organizations in the Springfield area.



Lori Johnson Murawski graduated with a Master of Business Administration from Drury in December 2013. She began working for TelComm Credit Union in 2006 and is currently Vice President of Marketing & Business Development. Murawski is heavily involved in the community. She is a board member for Rotary Club of Springfield Southeast, is a member of the Junior League, and volunteers with Children’s Miracle Network among other non-profit organizations. She remains involved with Drury University and Breech School of Business.



James Owen, Drury University class of 2000, graduated from University of Kansas School of Law in 2003 and received his law license in 2004. He has clerked for the Missouri Court of Appeals, worked in his own private practice, and was appointed to be Webster County Associate Circuit Judge in 2014. Currently, he and his wife, Claire, reside in Columbia, Missouri and he works for the state of Missouri’s Office of Administration in Jefferson City.


Drury MBA students study business, culture in Greece

A recent study abroad trip to Greece drove home an emphasis on international business and cultural awareness for Drury MBA students.

Candida Deckard was one of about two dozen on the trip, which included interviewing business leaders face-to-face, meeting with locals and taking in cultural sights.

“Travel in general and seeing different cultures and ideas helps a person expand their views and become more well-rounded,” she says. “Having this as a part of the Drury MBA program added value for my career and my personal life.”

Deckard, human resources director at CNH Industrial Reman in Springfield, says she and her classmates couldn’t have asked for a more interesting setting as far as international business headlines go – they were in Greece as the country’s debt crisis continued to unfold. The crisis didn’t affect the trip, but it brought differences in business practices into sharp relief.

“It was definitely not the capitalist way of running a business,” Deckard says.

Dickered near the ruins of the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion.

Deckard near the ruins of the Temple of Poseidon at Cape Sounion, one of many sights seen on the trip.

For example, they heard from the country’s largest power company that dozens of secretaries remained on the payroll despite not having defined jobs or a retraining program. In another example, a textile plant was denied permission by the government to reduce its workforce and cut costs – and the entire plant closed soon after.

They also heard about tax reform efforts from leaders of the American Hellenic Chamber of Commerce and spoke to a number of small business owners. Historic and cultural sights were on the itinerary as well. Part of the trip was spent at the Drury Center in Aegina.

Studying abroad is a requirement of the program and it offers an experience one can’t get from a book or lecture, says program director Angie Adamick, who also went on this trip along with management professor Dr. Janis Prewitt.

“We believe the only way to really accomplish that is for students to experience another culture and have that interaction with people on the ground,” Adamick says. “It just changes the way they look at international business.”


Story by Mike Brothers, Drury’s director of media relations. A version of this story originally appeared in the Springfield News-Leader.

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

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., July 24, 2015 — The public can see a diverse array of artwork from Drury University’s Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA) next weekend during a thesis exhibition by graduating students and an open studios event. These events offer an opportunity to view a new group of imaginative, innovative, emerging artists in the region.

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

The Eighth Annual Master of Arts in Studio Art & Theory (MART) Exhibition takes place one night only from 6 to 10 p.m., Friday, July 31 at the Pool Art Center Gallery. The MART Thesis Exhibition is the culminating event of the program in which students explore and develop an intensive studio practice. Work presented in the exhibition is wide-ranging in form, material, and theme, and reflects a curriculum that supports multidisciplinary and individualized approaches.

The exhibition features the work of graduating students Neil Adams, Holly Goodwin, Adrienne Klotz-Floyd, Stuart Lenig, Paul Little, Rebekah Polly and Shay Rainey.

Open Studios

Held at the same time throughout the rest of Pool Art Center, the Open Studios event gives the public a chance to view work by and meet with all current SIVA 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 made over the summer.

More information about SIVA can be found at Photos showing the wide array of creativity at work during SIVA are being uploaded regularly at


Media Contact: Sarrita Hunn, Director of the Summer Institute for Visual Arts. Email:

Open house targets prospective graduate, non-traditional students 

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., July 21, 2015 — Prospective non-traditional students can get their questions answered in person at a Drury University open house event Thursday.

The College of Continuing Professional Studies and the College of Graduate Studies will hold a joint open house from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, July 23 at Reed Auditorium in the Trustee Science Center. Staff members and program directors will be on hand to answer questions about degrees, career options, admission requirements and financial aid. Trustee Science Center is located on the west side of Drury Lane, just north of Chestnut Expressway.

The College of Continuing Professional Studies (CCPS) offers bachelor and associate degree programs at Drury’s main campus in Springfield and at branch campuses in Ava, Cabool, Fort Leonard Wood/St. Robert, Lebanon, Monett, Rolla and Thayer. The College of Graduate Studies offers masters degrees in business administration, communication, education, teaching, and studio art & theory.

Programs in both areas feature flexibility so that students can pursue a degree in a timeframe that works best for them. CCPS currently offers 14 undergraduate degrees that can be completed totally online, as well as many seated courses. Graduate courses are offered in the evenings, online, and in alternative formats such as weekend experiences, and 8-week or 16-week courses.

For more information about graduate programs, call (417) 873-7530 or visit For more information about CCPS programs, call (417) 873-7373 or visit