Drury among partners selected for $1.3 million Northwest Project grant

The Community Foundation of the Ozarks announced today that a five-year grant for up to $1.3 million to address poverty in northwest Springfield will be awarded to a partnership led by Missouri State University, the Drew Lewis Foundation and Drury University.

The partnership was selected by a volunteer grant committee through a competitive process that began last fall. Major funding for the grant is being provided by the CFO, the Stanley and Elaine Ball Foundation managed by Central Trust and The Musgrave Foundation.

The goal of The Northwest Project is to pilot strategies over a five-year period to help families overcome the challenges that have kept them living in poverty and sustain their long-term success in emerging from those circumstances. The MSU/Drew Lewis/Drury partnership was selected for its vision of using a model that couples family support with neighborhood development and sustainability. This community-driven development model will work to bridge the gaps between people and resources through both case management services and a teamwork approach where program participants will be expected to support each other.

A strong consideration in awarding the grant is the proposed comprehensive evaluation process, which will be coordinated jointly by MSU’s Center for Community Engagement and Drury’s Center for Nonprofit Leadership. In addition, Drury’s Community Outreach and Leadership Development Office will manage a centralized, online volunteer service to coordinate participant needs and reduce overlap of services.

The CFO encouraged grant applicants to consider a model used in Jacksonville, Florida’s “1,000 in 1,000” project, which has demonstrated success in reducing poverty by emphasizing “pivotal assets” that boost families’ opportunities for success. Examples of these include financial literacy, parenting skills, reliable transportation, affordable housing, quality childcare and others.

The MSU/Drew Lewis/Drury partnership also includes a number of community agencies that will provide resources related to these pivotal assets. These partners are: Ozarks Technical Community College, MU Extension, the City of Springfield, Consumer Credit Counseling, Springfield Community Gardens, Springfield Public Schools, Life 360 Family Services, Habitat for Humanity, Boys and Girls Club, Great Circle-Parenting Life Skills Center, Hand in Hand Multicultural Center, Care to Learn, Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association, Ozarks Regional YMCA and Schweitzer United Methodist Church Jobs for Life Program.

The first step for The Northwest Project will be informational meetings this spring to recruit and evaluate the first group of eligible families. For more information about the background of The Northwest Project, visit: www.cfozarks.org/northwest.

Sugar Rush event to benefit Harmony House and Watching over Whiskers

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 4, 2016 — Drury University’s Sigma Pi chapter, along with The Cake Pop Company, are proud to announce the return of Sugar Rush, a dessert sampling charity event. Sugar Rush will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, April 14, at the O’Reilly Family Event Center at Drury University.

All proceeds will benefit Harmony House, one of the state’s largest shelters and resource centers for domestic violence victims and their families, and Watching Over Whiskers, a local animal rescue and support fund.

Guests will sample tasty treats from some of the best in the Ozarks including Aviary Cafe, Blue Bell Creameries, Brick & Mortar Coffee, Cake Pop Co., Chick-Fil-A, Daylight Donuts, Golden Corral, Grammy K’s Sweet Creations, Heroes Coffee, June’s Cakery, Kilwins Branson, Neighbor’s Mill Bakery & Cafe, Simply Delicious Catering, Tea Bar & Bites, and Uncommon Confections.

Sugar Rush was held in 2010 and 2011 but was left without a hosting committee until Drury Sigma Pi members stepped in to resurrect the concept earlier this year. “Witnessing the enormous impact Sugar Rush has had in the past for both the businesses and nonprofits involved, we’ve spent the last few months reinventing the original idea while finding opportunities to innovate in an effort to create the best experience possible,” says Kent Otto, Drury’s Sigma Pi chapter director.

Student organizers have “been able to gain invaluable real-world experience by organizing an event of this magnitude,” says student Elias Jardell.

General admission tickets are $15 if purchased in advance at sgfSugarRush.com and $20 at the door. Student tickets are $10 and kids 8 and under are free.

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Media Contact: Kent Otto, Drury Sigma Pi Chapter Director: (417) 459-6589 or kent@sgfsugarrush.com.

C-Street Gallery opens Crafting Our Well-Being: Art as Therapy on April 8

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 1, 2016 — The Drury on C-Street Gallery will host an opening reception for its April exhibition, Crafting Our Well-being: Art as Therapy, from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, April 8.

The exhibit features works from retirement community members and more than 10 local artists that illustrate how art is used as cognitive and emotional therapy. The event is free and open to the public. Food and refreshments will be provided as well as live musical entertainment from singer Micah Textor and Drury’s ukulele club, DUkes. There will also be a raffle to win a piece of featured art. Proceeds from the raffle will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Association.

The show is composed of a wide range of media including paintings, ceramics, photography, fiber arts, live performance art, and more. It features work from Rebecca Miller, the director of the arts administration program at Drury, and Jessie Schwartz from Studio 13 in addition to numerous other artists. Weaver Paula Rosen and ceramist David Cogorno will create works live at the opening reception.

Crafting Our Well-being: Art as Therapy runs April 8 through April 28. The gallery is open from 1 to 5 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays. The Drury on C-Street Gallery is located on 233 E. Commercial St.

For more information, call (417) 873-6359 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, space for weaving looms, architecture classroom and a multi-use area for additional classes and seminars. 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.

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International Food Festival celebrates cultures, friendships on campus

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 31, 2016 — International students at Drury University will share their cultures with friends and guests through food and performance during the 29th annual International Food Festival at 6 p.m., Saturday, April 2 at the Commons in Findlay Student Center.

This year’s theme is the 2016 Olympics and will include a flag parade, singing, dancing, and other performances. Media are welcome to cover the event.

This popular dinner is truly a university-wide celebration, with numerous faculty, staff and American students joining their international friends each year. With approximately 12 percent of the undergraduate student population hailing from abroad, international culture is an important aspect of everyday life at Drury. These students bring a rich diversity of backgrounds and perspectives to campus, further enhancing a focus on global learning at a university where about half all undergraduates study abroad during their academic career.

Food is an important medium for sharing cultures because, “every culture uses food as a part of their celebrations,” says Heejung Cromley, director of international support services. The festival will feature foods from Kenya, Korea, Italy, India, Brazil, and other countries.

The guests enjoying the food are not the only ones who get a meaningful experience. Students put in a lot of effort to prepare the food and it is often a daylong process. “They work so hard as a team and build friendships through this event,” says Cromley. This event is a way for international students to enjoy spending time with one another and share their culture with the community.

“It is such a wonderful opportunity for our international students to share who they are by introducing their culture through food and sharing,” says Cromley.

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Guest lecturer brings music & marketing expertise to Drury March 31

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 29, 2016 — The Self-Employment in the Arts Lecture Series, sponsored by the Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship, will bring world-renowned opera singer Michael Spyres to campus for a lecture at 4 p.m. Thursday, March 31 at Carole Lambert Studio in Shewmaker Hall. The talk is open to the public.

Spyres was recently named artistic director of the Springfield Regional Opera. Born and raised in the Ozarks, he is one of the most sought after tenors of his generation and has performed extensively throughout Europe and North America.

During his talk, Spyres will share the story behind his success as a self-employed singer in a dizzyingly competitive industry. The event comes just before he leads the SRO in performances of Mozart’s classic comic opera “The Marriage of Figaro” on April 1 and 3 at the Gillioz Theater.

About the Series and the Edward Jones Center

The Self-Employment in the Arts Series features successful, entrepreneurial artists from across the country for small-group sessions, lectures and the occasional performance on Drury’s campus. The series will bring Drury alumnus and professional opera singer Michael Spyres to campus on Thursday, March 31.

The Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship was made possible by the generous contribution of John and Crystal Beuerlein and Edward Jones, Inc. All parties feel passionately about entrepreneurship and believe in the idea of helping people create new businesses. They are also eager to provide employees of existing corporations with tools to continually refresh and reinvent their organizations as markets and business environments change.

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Willie Nelson concert changes lineup; adds Jamey Johnson & Ryan Bingham

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Mar 29, 2016 — The Willie Nelson & Family concert with Merle Haggard announces a change in the lineup of their April 8 date in Springfield at the O’Reilly Family Event Center.

The following statement was released today by the tour:

Nashville, Tenn., (MARCH 29, 2016) – Due to unforeseen circumstances, Merle Haggard is canceling his April performances with Willie Nelson & Family. He has received doctor’s orders to complete his recovery from double pneumonia by continuing to rest.

Merle says, “I want to thank my fans for their prayers and well wishes. I hope to be back on the road in May, but I’m taking it one day at a time.”

The Willie Nelson & Family tour will continue with special guests Jamey Johnson and Ryan Bingham.

The change in the lineup is bittersweet, as concert promoters were looking forward to seeing the two classic country stars share the stage, but the addition of not one, but two award-winning artists make this evening something unexpectedly special.

This Springfield date is sold out. Ticketholders desiring refunds as a result of the change can call 1-800-514-3849. Any ticket inventory that is refunded will then be made available for purchase at 1o a.m., Friday, April 1. To purchase those tickets, visit www.drurytickets.com, call (417) 873-6389, or visit the box office at the O’Reilly Center.

Willie Nelson & Family with special guests Jamey Johnson & Ryan Bingham will take place on Friday, April 8 at the O’Reilly Family Event Center.

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Humanities & Arts Film Series returns to the Moxie Cinema in April 

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 29, 2016 — Drury University’s Humanities & Ethics Center continues its partnership with the Moxie Cinema in downtown Springfield with three upcoming screenings. Drury professors will host the screenings and lead discussions about the films. The Drury Humanities & Arts Film Series is made possible by a grant from the Missouri Humanities Council.

The spring series begins on Saturday, April 2 at 1 p.m. with the film, Chinatown. Dr. Kevin Henderson, assistant dean of the humanities and social sciences, will host the screening by giving a short talk and leading a discussion with the audience. The themes will include the film’s now iconic status, the questions it poses for the humanities, and the lingering power of film noir in American culture. Thanks to the grant from the Missouri Humanities Council, tickets are half-price ($5).

Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway star in Chinatown.

Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway star in Chinatown.

Next in the series is the film The Iron Giant, hosted by Steve Carpenter, assistant professor of art/communication, which will screen on Saturday, April 16 at 1 p.m. Tickets will be free for this showing.

The third and final film is Burnt By the Sun, hosted by Dr. Ray Patton, assistant professor of history. This film will screen on Saturday, April 30 at 1 p.m. Tickets for this event will be half-price ($5).

The Moxie is the region’s only independently owned arts cinema and is located at 305 S. Campbell Ave. Parking in the adjacent parking garage is free of charge.

For more information about these films or this series, which is part of Drury’s Humanities and Ethics Center series, visit Drury’s Humanities blog Human, All Too Human, or www.moxiecinema.com.

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Media Contact: Kevin Henderson; Director, Humanities and Arts Film Series: (417) 873-7426 or khenders@drury.edu.

Student-led start-ups help The Fairbanks improve Grant Beach

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 28, 2016 — The Fairbanks is now partnering with the Drury University Enactus team to address a number of pressing issues such as food insecurity, transportation needs and employment opportunities in the Grant Beach Neighborhood.

Through this partnership with Drury’s student entrepreneurship team, The Fairbanks is launching innovative projects such as a locally sourced healthy food subscription service, a bike rental shop and even a worm farm. These projects expand access to healthy food, transportation, and job opportunities for residents of the Grant Beach Neighborhood.

The list of projects includes:

Grocery Store – The grocery store at The Fairbanks creates a food source in the Grant Beach Neighborhood, which directly addresses food insecurities in one of the largest food deserts in Springfield. This store will provide Grant Beach residents with fresh produce, food essentials and other necessities at an affordable cost.

Bike Rental Shop – The Fairbanks bike rental shop offers affordable means of transportation to residents of the Grant Beach Neighborhood. Area residents who lack transportation are now able to rent bicycles at an affordable rate of $2 per hour.

Rental bikes ready for use hang in the bike shop at The Fairbanks.

Rental bikes ready for use hang in the bike shop at The Fairbanks.

Worm & Mushroom Farms – The Fairbanks has launched mushroom and fertilizer businesses to generate revenue and create jobs for residents in Grant Beach. Currently, The Fairbanks grows, harvests and sells portobello and oyster mushrooms to local restaurants and Springfield residents. The Fairbanks is also home to approximately 1,000 worms. These worms aid in composting waste and produce nutrient-rich soil. The nutrient fertilizer and worm tea will be sold to local community gardens and home gardeners in Springfield. The maintenance of both the mushrooms and worms will provide employment opportunities to those in the Grant Beach neighborhood.

Members of Drury’s Enactus Team separate worms from compost in the “worm farm” located in the basement of The Fairbanks.

Members of Drury’s Enactus Team separate worms from compost in the “worm farm” located in the basement of The Fairbanks.

Healthy Food Subscription Service – The Nourished Neighbors project at The Fairbanks provides Grant Beach residents with fresh, healthy and affordable food from local farmers through a food subscription service. Nourished Neighbors packages and delivers meals purchased by subscribers throughout the Springfield area at a premium price. The proceeds from meals purchased at a premium price allows Nourished Neighbors to sell subscription meals at a reduced price to residents of the Grant Beach Neighborhood.

 

About The Fairbanks

Launched in 2013, The Fairbanks aims to build a center for community betterment initiatives in the Grant Beach Neighborhood. The Fairbanks addresses community needs through collaborative partnerships with organizations that positively influence residents’ needs. Its goal is to benefit kids and adults from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds through social, physical and educational activities. Ultimately, it hopes to improve quality of life in the Grant Beach Neighborhood and make Springfield a better place to live. For more information, visit thefairbankssgf.com.

About Drury’s Enactus Team

Since 1997, Drury Enactus has empowered communities throughout the world facing economic, environmental and social barriers by implementing entrepreneurial, sustainable programs. These programs have had a meaningful impact on thousands of people in Springfield, throughout the United States, and on virtually every continent around the globe.

Attached images: Members of Drury’s Enactus Team separate worms from compost in the “worm farm” located in the basement of The Fairbanks. / Rental bikes ready for use hang in the bike shop at The Fairbanks.

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Media Contact: Dr. John Taylor, Director, Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship: (417) 873-6356 or jtaylor03@drury.edu.

Alumnus & musician to give talk, host performance March 31

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 23, 2016 — Springfield musician and Drury alumnus Arthur Duncan will give a presentation and host a musical performance at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 31 at the Drury Diversity Center. The Center is located on Drury Lane, just north of Bob Barker Boulevard. The event is free and open to the public.

Duncan attended Drury in the 1970s and studied music. In the decades since, he has led numerous jazz, gospel and R&B groups in Springfield. He is also the minister of music at Higher Ground Ministries under Pastor Larry Maddox.

Duncan, a pianist and songwriter, will talk about his experience as a student at Drury in the 1970s and will lead his jazz trio in a performance of various styles of music from his repertoire. He will also discuss music and the creative process as part of his presentation, including how he writes songs.

The President’s Council on Inclusion is sponsoring the event.

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Media Contact: Rosalyn Thomas, Diversity Support Service Coordinator: (417) 873-6827 or rthomas005@drury.edu.

Drury launches new degree in Game Development

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 23, 2016 — Aspiring computer programmers and game developers in the Midwest will have a new option for a college degree starting next fall as Drury launches a program in Computer Science – Game Development.

The degree is among the few such offerings in the Midwest, despite the fact that the game industry has annual revenues of about $90 billion worldwide – greater than that of the film industry.

Game development is a rapidly diversifying field. The traditional industry continues to grow as mobile apps and games become a staple of everyday life and as networks like ESPN have begun broadcasting high-level competitive play as a spectator sport. Beyond traditional computer games, game-like interfaces and systems are transforming everything from workforce development to healthcare.

“Drury’s liberal arts setting is perfect for a game development degree,” says Dr. Carol Browning, professor of mathematics and computer science. “Games require more than just coding knowledge – they also encompass narrative techniques, art, music, 3D modeling and artificial intelligence. Drury’s interdisciplinary approach to learning will serve these students extremely well.”

The degree is a computer science degree at its core, and graduates will be well prepared to enter any number of traditional computer science fields, where qualified employees are constantly in high demand. The program requires a core of computer science courses covering essential elements of the field, plus 15 additional hours of computer science course work in game development and 12 hours of supporting course work from media arts courses. The program begins in the fall of 2016.

“We’re extremely pleased to be able to offer this degree, particularly since most game development programs are located on the east or west coast,” says Dr. Beth Harville, dean of the College of Mathematics & Natural Sciences. “From mobile games to apps that challenge us to eat healthier or exercise more to new hardware such as Fitbit and virtual reality headsets – games are everywhere and we want our graduates to be among those contributing to this robust field.”

For more information about the degree program, visit http://www.drury.edu/math-and-computer-science/game-development. For more information about Drury admissions in general, visit http://www.drury.edu/admission.

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