Middle East Studies program welcomes visiting Arabic Fulbright professor

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Oct. 9, 2017 — Drury welcomed Arabic professor Mouhcine El-Hajjami to campus this year as part of the Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistantship program. The prestigious State Department-run program brings visiting professors from around the world to teach on college campuses in the United States.

This year marks the twelfth consecutive year that Drury has been granted a Fulbright scholar to teach Arabic in the university’s Middle East studies program.

“Fulbright is a highly competitive national program and the fact that we have been able to get this for 12 years is a good testament to Drury’s academic programs,” says Dr. Jeff VanDenBerg, Director of Middle East Studies program.

Drury offers a Middle East studies minor, an interdisciplinary program that allows students to take classes in wide range of topics including politics, history, art, architecture, and literature.

“The ability to offer Arabic to Drury students with someone from the Arab world is really a foundation of that program,” says VanDenBerg. “Many students build strong, lasting relationships with the professors who come through this program. Those people help our students with different Arabic language programs in the Middle East.”

Previous Fulbright scholars to Drury have come from across the Middle East, including Tunisia, Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Palestine, and Israel.

El-Hajjami is a Moroccan native. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in English Studies and Masters of Arts in Cultural Studies; and is currently a doctoral researcher in the area of gender and cinema studies at Sidi Mohammed Ben Abdellah University in Fez, Morocco. He brings experience teaching both English and Arabic to a diverse audience of students.

However, teaching Arabic is only part of what El-Hajjami hopes to accomplish during his time at Drury.

“I’m also here as a cultural ambassador,” says El-Hajjami. “Today there are a lot of clashes going on – religious, cultural, and ethnic clashes. The further you are from me, the more I will build up misconceptions about you. The closer we go, the better we know each other and we become much more likely to understand each other.”

In this way, El-Hajjami’s visit is about more than just learning a language. It is about cultural exchange, international cooperation, and Drury’s mission to educate students to be engaged global citizens.

El-Hajjami’s impact will extend beyond just students in his Arabic classes. During his time here he will also give guest lectures in English literature classes, gender studies classes, and to the Drury community as a whole. He’ll even serve as an expert commentator as part of Drury’s annual Moxie film series.

“The lessons and opportunities permeate throughout the campus,” says VanDenBerg. “It’s a good reflection on a Drury education.”


Drury University Alumni Council welcomes three new members

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Oct. 5, 2017 — Drury University has welcomed three new members to its Alumni Council, the governing body of the Drury Alumni Association.

The council serves as the voice for all Drury alumni, and encourages engagement between alumni and current students through various connection programs. This year, the council is committed to strengthening its relationship with regional alumni groups, encouraging alumni to promote Drury within their communities, and continuing to provide opportunities for alumni to mentor current students.

This year’s new members are:

Patti Callaway has spent most of her more than 20-year career in the accounting field. In 2007 she returned to school to complete her bachelor’s degree with Drury’s College of Continuing Professional Studies, graduating in 2009. Callaway currently serves as payroll manager for The Payroll Company. She is involved with Springfield Aquatics, as well as several international projects, including serving as board treasurer for Global Community Works.


Ron Carrier, a 1986 graduate in political science, is Associate Circuit Judge for Greene County and a member of the Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association. He also serves on the Advisory Board of Drury’s L.E. Meador Center for Politics and Citizenship, which seeks to inspire in students’ visions of a more democratic and hopeful world.


Janell Manley earned degrees in business administration and economics in 1975 and an MBA in 1978. Manley currently serves as the Administrative Director for Police Officer’s and Firefighters Retirement System for the City of Springfield. She is active with organizations involving Springfield Public Schools and animal rescue and care.


The Alumni Council meets six times a year. Alumni can apply for membership to the council in April of each year. Those selected serve four-year terms in various positions of responsibility.

More information about the Alumni Council and its members can be found at http://www.drury.edu/alumni/alumni-council.


C-Street Gallery opens “Study Abroad: The Student View” exhibit Friday

“Through the Aventine Keyhole” by Jessica Rockafellow, taken in Rome.

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Oct. 4, 2017 — The photography exhibition “Study Abroad: The Student View” opens Friday at the Drury on C-Street Art Gallery with a reception from 5-8 p.m.

This marks the second installment of what has become an annual exhibition featuring photographs taken by Drury students who have studied abroad over the past academic year. This year’s gallery represents 16 different students bringing photographs from around the world.

The gallery will be open throughout the month of October and all student prints on display will be available for purchase through silent auction. Bids start at $15 and proceeds from the auction go to study abroad scholarships.

The Drury on C-Street Gallery is also hosting Enactus students who are raising money to support the Woman’s Skill Training Center at the Tribal School of the Hem Sheela Model School in Durgapur, India. A wide variety of beautiful items created by women in the training center will be available for purchase during the exhibition’s opening reception.

Untitled photo by Hannah Ogden, taken in Switzerland.

Gallery viewing hours after the reception will be 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Fridays, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays. The gallery will be closed during Drury’s Fall Break, October 19 to 22.

For more information, call (417) 873-6337 or visit Drury on C-Street’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/DruryCStreet.

About Drury on C-Street

The Drury on C-Street Project is an initiative by Drury University, in partnership with other local organizations, to establish a Drury Center on Commercial Street. This center includes an art gallery, a business resource center, and the weaving studio. The Drury on C-Street Gallery is a professional, student-run gallery featuring emerging and established artists. Drury University’s Drury on C-Street Gallery provides arts administration majors the experience of promoting the work of local artists. The gallery connects the community to new and relevant art in an accessible and welcoming environment.


Drury University launches comprehensive hazing prevention effort

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Oct. 4, 2017 — Drury University, a private, liberal arts school in Springfield, Missouri, is launching a comprehensive, innovative new effort to combat hazing on its campus. The changes are the result of recommendations by a blue-ribbon committee formed at the direction of Drury President Dr. Tim Cloyd following a high-profile hazing incident involving one of Drury’s athletics teams. The committee’s final report was released today, and is available online.

Cloyd tasked the committee to develop a program for Drury’s campus that would eradicate hazing and could potentially serve as a national model for other colleges and universities across the country.  The committee, comprised of students, faculty, and community leaders, was led by Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Tijuana Julian, Swimming & Diving Coach Brian Reynolds, and Athletic Director Mark Fisher.

Drury’s interdisciplinary committee on the prevention of hazing.

“Our committee took a systematic, campus-wide view of the issue and brought forth recommendations that help to clearly define what hazing is, better educate our students about why the practice is so detrimental, and open up avenues for them to find truly constructive and inclusive ways to build bonds with one another,” Julian says. “This approach makes it clear that we will not tolerate hazing at Drury University.”

Central to the program is an effort to empower students to change behavior, and use open lines of communication with faculty, staff, and coaches to report any activity that could be considered hazing. All athletic team captains and leaders, Greek leaders, and presidents of all other organizations are required to take a for-credit class on Leadership and Team Development that includes academic studies and case studies on hazing. In addition, the program calls for a mandatory retreat for leaders that focuses on developing positive team-building skills.

Additional changes include a broad commitment to education across campus, numerous policy changes, weaving the program into the university curriculum, and anonymous surveys of student-athletes.

Many of the recommendations outlined in the report are already underway, and will continue throughout the academic year before being evaluated and adjusted as needed each year. Highlights of the committee’s recommendations include:

Empowering Students

Understanding that education alone is not enough, the committee recommendations are focused on creating a program that changes behavior through action, empowerment and accountability.

Captains retreat and core covenants – Prior to the start of the school year, athletic team captains will participate in an all-day retreat with the goal of creating a “team of leaders” who are empowered to build a unified culture of accountability and respect within the Drury athletic department. The captains work together to create a set of core covenants that will guide their behavior and decision-making throughout the year. These student-athletes also will be required to take a one credit-hour course in leadership development as part of their duties as team captains. A parallel retreat will be held for Greek organizations in January. The retreats will continue to be held annually.

Expanded education – Educational sessions will be held for each team at the start of every school year, covering topics including NCAA compliance, review of the Athletic Code of Conduct and the Student Athletic Handbook, and bystander intervention training by one of Drury’s Green Dot Program facilitators.

Student honor code – New this year, all incoming freshman have signed a pledge to abide by an honor code that calls on members of the Drury community to treat others with mutual respect, refrain from bullying and intimidation, and to let “honesty guide my every action.” Additionally, freshman heard messages about hazing during their four-day orientation that included education about what hazing is, and how to report it on campus, including anonymously.

Additional Steps

Policy Changes & Sanctions – Drury amended its policies to be more clear about what constitutes hazing, recognizing three distinct categories of behavior: subtle, harassment and violent hazing. Additionally, sanctions for all levels of hazing were increased to reflect the seriousness and severity of each, with the university reserving the right to impose the strictest penalties in any hazing situation – up to and including expulsion.

Reporting obligations – All faculty and staff employees have an obligation to report hazing to the university if they become aware of, witness or otherwise obtain information about such behavior. Failure to do so can result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination. Steps have been taken to make the hazing reporting process more closely parallel that of sexual assault under Title IX, which has been a standard for student conduct oversight for decades.

Going Forward

In the coming weeks and months, Drury administrators and coaches will share the report’s findings and recommendations with other universities around the nation and K12 schools in the region, with the goal of providing others with takeaways and ideas they can use to stem hazing at their institutions.

“We recognize that these kinds of plans are not one-size-fits-all,” Reynolds, Drury’s swimming coach, says. “However, we want to lead by example and do whatever we can to share what we have learned and help other institutions prevent their students from experiencing the negative effects of hazing.”

To download the full report, and see videos about the changes taking place, go to www.drury.edu/hazing.


Media Contact: Mike Brothers – Executive Director of University Relations: (417) 873-7390 or mikebrothers@drury.edu.

Two online programs at Drury among best, most affordable in the nation

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., September 25, 2017 — Two of Drury University’s online bachelor’s degree programs have been ranked among the 25 most affordable in the nation by AffordableColleges.com.

Drury University’s online Bachelor of Science in Human Services ranked 25th among such programs, while its online Bachelor of Science in Health Services Management ranked 21st.

The university’s online human services degree program, offered through the College of Continuing Professional Studies (CCPS), is for students interested in helping others through service and public outreach. Graduates work alongside social workers, detectives, doctors and other specialists at hospitals, clinics and community organizations. Many human services workers provide intervention for citizens with substance abuse problems or help victims of crime or violence. The program combines psychology and sociology courses in topics like social work and family therapy, and includes an optional leadership concentration. Students complete 36 hours in their major, with the remaining coursework in general education and electives.

“It’s gratifying to get external confirmation of the quality of our online program in human services,” said Dr. Vickie Luttrell, chair of behavioral sciences at Drury University. “It’s a great degree for students who are committed to improving the quality of life for those in need. Students majoring in human services often go on to become social and human service assistants, community services managers, and mental health counselors, and according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, these are employment areas that can be expected to grow in the immediate future.”

The university’s online health services management degree program, also offered through CCPS, is a degree completion program for professionals in health related fields, including registered nurses, physical therapy assistants and emergency medical services personnel. The degree is particularly appropriate for healthcare professionals who want to advance in their careers and already have appropriate licensures, clinical skills and in-service training. Students develop leadership, supervisory and administrative skills and complete 63 hours in their major, with the remaining coursework in general education and electives. Applicants can transfer credit hours.

AffordableColleges.com made particular note of Drury’s affordable online tuition rate and wealth of financial aid opportunities for CCPS students.

“Drury offers courses at a tuition rate of $299 per credit hour and makes a number of financial aid options available, including specific awards for students in a CCPS degree program,” AffordableColleges.com said.

The college rankings company, comprised of “a group of professionals from a variety of backgrounds who share the belief that colleges costs are out of control,” determines its rankings based on an 11-point “Value Score” algorithm. The algorithm is comprised of the following data points: tuition cost, number of students receiving financial aid, net price, loan default rate, enrollment rate, full-time retention rate, graduation rate, student/faculty ratio, admissions rate, number of programs, and percentage of students taking at least one course online. The college rankings company uses the most recent data available from the U.S. Department of Education’s Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) to determine its rankings.

AffordableColleges.com said it uses its Value Score “to draw a distinction between the programs that appear cheap up-front and those that will pay off in the long run.”

About CCPS

The College of Continuing Professional Studies (CCPS) offers bachelor and associate degree programs primarily in the evening at Drury’s main campus in Springfield and at branch campuses in Ava, Cabool, Fort Leonard Wood/St. Robert, Lebanon, Monett, Rolla and West Plains. CCPS programs are designed to meet the needs of adult students with busy lifestyles that make traditional degree completion impractical. Online courses for undergraduate and graduate programs enhance the flexibility and quality of the educational experience. CCPS offers a number of undergraduate degrees and several graduate degrees that can be completed totally online.


Media Contact: Greg Katski, Director of Marketing, CCPS: (417) 873-7317 or gkatski@drury.edu.


Seventh annual Panther Run race benefiting Care To Learn is Oct. 7

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 22, 2017 — Drury University will once again host the 7th annual Panther Run to benefit Care To Learn on Saturday, October 7.

The event includes 5k, 10k, and 15k races. All three races begin and end at the O’Reilly Family Event Center. The Panther Run boasts more than $20,000 in awards and prizes – one of the largest prize pools of any race in the region. All participants will be entered into a prize drawing and there will be awards for the top male and female finishers in each age division. Additionally, all participants will receive a high-quality long sleeve Panther Run T-shirt with their race packets.

“Drury is proud to host the Panther Run again this year,” says Drury First Lady Wendy Cloyd, who is among the organizers. “There are more than 100 Drury alumni already registered to run or walk in support of Care To Learn’s mission.”

Pre-registration is open through October 5 online at www.Panther-Run.com. The cost to register in advance for the 15k or 10k events is $45, while the 5k event is $35. Registration after October 5 will cost $50 for the 15k and 10k events or $40 for the 5k.

Proceeds benefit Care To Learn, which provides for the immediate health, hunger, and personal hygiene needs of Missouri students to help ensure their success in school. Founded in 2008 by Springfield native Doug Pitt, the organization currently has 32 chapters that seek to provide funding for K-12 students across the state.


2017 nonprofit conference to examine fundamentals of success

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 15, 2017 — The Drury University Center for Nonprofit Leadership will host the sixth annual Nonprofit Communication Conference next month, bringing hundreds of industry leaders and community change-agents from across the Midwest to Springfield.

The 2017 conference will be held Friday, Oct. 6, at the Oasis Convention Center. The theme is “Back to Basics,” with a focus on the inspirations behind the organizations that are addressing some of the most pressing needs in communities throughout the Midwest. The training is Missouri’s largest single-day nonprofit conference, attracting nearly 300 people representing around 125 organizations from eight states.

The conference features 14 speakers and includes sessions on relevant and timely industry topics, including:

  • Fundraising Freedom
  • Leading from Your Strengths
  • Telling Stories through Financial Statements
  • Enhancing Accountability and Engagement
  • Getting Your Story in the Media
  • Strategic Planning for your Brand
  • The Power of Social Media
  • Frameworks and Tools for Defining Impact
  • Project Management in the Nonprofit World
  • Improving Engagement through Internal Communication
  • Fundraising Basics that Produce Results
  • Connecting Board and Staff Meetings

Major sponsors include Thrivent Financial, Connell Insurance, DL Media, Oasis Hotel and Convention Center, KPM CPAs, and Panera Bread.

The registration is $75, $65 group rates (5 or more), $59 students (ID required). To learn more or to register, visit www.Drury.edu/Nonprofit.

For more information, contact Dan Prater at the Drury University Center for Nonprofit Leadership, (417)-873-7443 or dprater@drury.edu.


Drury once again recognized for value, excellence in U.S. News rankings

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 12, 2017 — U.S. News & World Report has once again recognized Drury University for providing outstanding value to its students, and named Drury among the top universities across the Midwest in its “Best Colleges 2018” publication released today.

Drury is ranked No. 8 on the U.S. News list for best value among Midwest regional universities. U.S. News joins other national publications such as Kiplinger’s Personal Finance and Washington Monthly in recognizing the value of a Drury education for lifelong success.

More broadly, Drury was also named among the top schools in the Midwest on the U.S. News “Best Regional Universities” list. Drury earned high marks for its ability to deliver personalized attention to students, thanks to a student-to-faculty ratio of 12 to 1 and small class sizes. Nearly two-thirds of Drury’s classes have less than 20 students and 99 percent of classes have less than 50 students. U.S. News editors also singled out Drury as the kind of school where students who display “spirit, individuality and seriousness of purpose” are able to grow and thrive thanks to its engaging student life and rewarding academic atmosphere.

Additionally, Drury was listed as one of the Top 10 Midwest Regional Universities with the highest percentage of international students (10 percent).

The listings continue a trend of excellence for Drury, which has been named to the U.S. News “Best Regional Universities” list every year for more than two decades.

(Please note: U.S. News creates separate lists for regional universities and regional colleges in some categories.)

The rankings can be viewed online at www.usnews.com/colleges.

“Those alumni who hold a Drury degree know first-hand the value of a Drury education, and the power this institution has to transform people into lifelong learners and community leaders,” says Drury President Dr. Tim Cloyd. “It’s gratifying to see others recognize that as well. This is a testament to the dedication of our faculty, staff and alumni.”

About the Rankings

U.S News & World Report’s “Best Colleges” rankings include nearly 1,400 schools nationwide, and are designed to give a quick comparison of the relative quality of institutions based on such widely accepted indicators of excellence as freshman retention and graduation rates and the strength of the faculty. The ranking system uses quantitative measures that education experts have proposed as reliable indicators of academic quality, as well as the publication’s own researched view of what matters in education.


Media Contact: Mike Brothers, Executive Director of University Relations: (417) 873-7390 or mikebrothers@drury.edu.

“Daily Show” host Trevor Noah comes to OFEC Nov. 19

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 11, 2017 — Comedian Trevor Noah, host of Comedy Central’s Emmy- and Peabody Award-winning “The Daily Show,” will bring his comedic insights to Springfield at Drury’s O’Reilly Family Event Center on Sunday Nov. 19.

Tickets for the live, one-night-only show start at $49.50 and go on sale at 10 a.m., Friday, Sept. 15 at http://www.drurytickets.com/ or by calling the OFEC box office at (417) 873-6389.

Noah debuted his 9th new comedy special “Afraid of the Dark” in February 2017 on Netflix. The special was shot before a packed house in New York City at the Beacon Theatre. Noah’s success has also spanned sold-out shows across five continents.

In November 2016, Noah released his first book “Born A Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood,” which was an instant New York Times bestseller. The book received two NAACP Image Awards, one for Outstanding Literary Work by a Debut Author, and another for Outstanding Literary Work in The BIography/Auto-Biography category.


New international business degree option at Drury enhances global acumen

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 11, 2017 — The Breech School of Business has launched an immersive and adaptable undergraduate degree option in international business this fall.

The international business major provides students with the ability to develop multicultural competences, preparing them to work with people in different parts of the world in a dynamic and global business environment. It is designed to be obtained in conjunction with a specialized business major such as accounting, economics, finance, management, or marketing. The degree option requires 12 credit hours of language courses and requires students to complete either a semester abroad or internship abroad to complement their studies.

Drury’s study abroad program offers both short- and long-term international study opportunities. Breech students have previously studied in places such as Cairo, Egypt; Granada, Spain; Ljubljana, Slovenia; and Aegina, Greece.

“The international business Major is designed to be interdisciplinary in nature,” says Dr. Jin Wang, dean of the Breech School of Business. “The time with and exposure to foreign culture and business practices will be very helpful to students who want to be more engaged in the dynamic global economy. Most industries have growing international interactions and these students should be well poised to take advantage of those opportunities.”

For more information about the Breech School of Business and the international business major, visit: http://www.drury.edu/business/international-business-major.