Drury student receives Stemler Study Abroad Scholarship

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 16, 2015 — Drury student Masha Podokshik has received a $1,000 James G. Stemler Study Abroad Scholarship from the Alpha Lambda Delta National Honor Society. Podokshik, a junior communication major from St. Louis, is Drury’s first Alpha Lambda Delta scholarship recipient. She will be studying in Spain during the spring 2016 semester.

Alpha Lambda Delta is a national honor society that recognizes and encourages academic excellence among first-year students. Founded in 1924, the society has inducted more than 1 million members in its 90-year history.


Drury University is committed to global learning and engagement. One in ten Drury undergraduates hails from outside the United States, and nearly 50 percent of undergraduate and graduate students study abroad. This summer, students are studying in China, Mexico, Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Denmark, Sweden and the Drury Center in Aigina, Greece.

“The complementary nature of having so many American students returning from study abroad opportunities and being part of a truly international campus creates a multicultural learning environment,” says Drury President Dr. David Manuel.


Drury to host Flag Day ceremony Thursday

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 10, 2015 — Drury University will host a Flag Day ceremony at 11 a.m. Thursday at the Armed Forces Plaza outside of the O’Reilly Family Event Center. The event is free and open to the public.

The local chapters of the Sons and Daughters of the American Revolution will join Drury for this celebration of our nation’s colors. Sons of the American Revolution member J. Howard Fisk will present a special recognition from that group, and members of the Daughters of the American Revolution will lead the Pledge of Allegiance and National Anthem. Aaron Jones, Dean of the College of Continuing Professional Studies, will also give remarks. Cake and refreshments will be available following the ceremony.

Officially celebrated on June 14, National Flag Day was established by Congress in 1949 to commemorate the day the flag of the United States was adopted by the Second Continental Congress in 1777.

Drury’s tradition of serving those who have served our country dates to the days following World War II, when buses brought soldiers from Fort Leonard Wood to classes held on the Springfield campus. Today, one of Drury’s 11 branch locations is at Fort Leonard Wood.

The commitment continues today, as Drury has been named a “Military Friendly School” by Victory Media and was ranked No. 3 in the Midwest on U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Colleges for Veterans” list. Drury is also a supporter school of the Order of the Purple Heart. Drury supports federal initiatives that help veterans and active-duty service members apply for, pay for and complete their degrees and has designated staff to help coordinate these services.


Passion for media and history come together in propaganda research

As a filmmaker and TV production professional, Nathan Maulorico knows that every shot tells a story – sometimes ones the viewers may not even be aware.

Lately, Maulorico has been putting his passion for history to work in order to find the stories behind the shots themselves.

The recent Drury graduate was invited to present findings from an undergraduate research paper at the annual Mississippi State University Symposium for Undergraduate History Research earlier this month. The paper examines how film propaganda techniques of the past influence the visuals we see in modern advertising and movies.

Nathan Maulorico

Nathan Maulorico

Maulorico, 33, has been making short films since his teen years and has worked on reality TV productions for about a decade with credits that include “Dance Moms,” “Clash of the Ozarks” and work with Bobby Flay. He graduated from the College of Continuing Professional Studies in December with degrees in advertising, public relations and history. Drury was the right place to combine these interests, he says, and this research was a rewarding way to cap off that experience.

“This project was a personal challenge to me to figure out how I can mesh all of those together,” he says.

Maulorico watched more than 30 films and clips of many others as part of his research. They dated from 1912 to modern times and came from nearly a dozen countries. He watched with an eye for known propaganda techniques, and for continuity between eras.

“I looked for the techniques that were being used in those early films and they were adapted in modern films, advertising and news media,” he says.

While much writing and research has been devoted to old propaganda vehicles – particularly films made in Nazi Germany – there’s been less written about the parallels in modern media, Maulorico says. Most of us don’t think propaganda affects us, but it’s out there.

“People think it only has to do with these old Nazi movies but really, propaganda is happening all around us,” he says. “Whether it’s politics or advertising, somebody is trying to influence what you’re doing every day.”


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

Successful “531 Challenge” caps off annual giving of more than $940,000

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 9, 2015 — Drury University’s second annual “531 Challenge” fundraising campaign exceeded its participation goal with 615 total donors, a 5 percent increase over last year.

The 531 Challenge began in April with the goal of 531 donors giving at any level before the last day of May – 5/31 on the calendar. Drury alumnus and Trustee Bill Vaughan and his wife Kathy committed to a challenge gift of $20,000 if the participation goal was met. In all, the challenge raised more than $180,700.

The challenge wrapped up a successful year at Drury, with over $940,000 raised for the Drury Fund supporting all areas of the student experience, including academic needs and scholarships.

Bill Vaughan

Bill Vaughan

“The response to this year’s challenge was a new level of commitment from our alumni and friends in support of our students and faculty who create a high quality liberal arts and pre-professional education community,” said Dianne Johnson, Vice President for Development and Alumni Relations. “This event asked for participation rather than a specific dollar amount, and we know that our alumni care deeply about supporting the experiences of current and future Drury students.”

“The commitment and support of Drury alumni is essential for the university’s continued success,” said Drury president Dr. David Manuel. “We are grateful for the example set by Bill and Kathy Vaughan, and for the generosity of all of those who contributed to the 531 Challenge this year.”


Media Contact: Andrea Battaglia, Director of Annual Giving. Office: (417) 873-7353, or email: abattaglia@drury.edu

Drury will host national home school debate tournament in 2016

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 3, 2015 — The Springfield Convention & Visitors Bureau announced today that Stoa, a speech and debate organization for Christian homeschooling families, selected Springfield for its 2016 National Invitational Tournament of Champions.

The event is expected to bring about 3,000 high school and junior high students, parents, coaches and spectators to the city May 20-28, 2016, said Mark Russell, president elect of Stoa. The championships will take place on the Drury University campus.

The CVB expects the city to be bustling with families staying at hotels, shopping, dining and visiting attractions when they’re not busy at the tournament. The CVB estimates spending of about $125 per person per day.

Russell said Springfield was a natural choice for the annual tournament, which rotates to the east, west and central parts of the country.

“Springfield truly has a strong reputation with homeschoolers with the National Christian Homeschool basketball tournament,” Russell said.

That tournament brings more than 8,000 people to the city and is the largest annual group event in Springfield. The city also hosts the National Christian Homeschool Spring Basketball Nationals, Fall Basketball Nationals, Fall Volleyball Nationals and Fall Tip-Off Basketball Tournament.

“This is a great event for Springfield made possible by the collaboration and cooperation of Drury University – a key in Stoa’s selection process,” said Tracy Kimberlin, president/CEO of the CVB.

“Drury is extremely pleased to play host to the 2016 Stoa national tournament,” said Rob Fridge, Drury’s chief financial officer. “We’re excited to help bring this group of high-achieving students and their families to Springfield, and we expect nearly every room on our campus to be bustling with activity over the course of eight days next spring.”


Kids Fest event connects community with area nonprofit agencies

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., June 1, 2015 — Kids and families won’t want to miss Springfield Kids Fest from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, June 13 at Jordan Valley Park. The event is sponsored by Drury University and North Point Church.

The day is designed to help parents and families learn about local nonprofits, community service organizations, faith-based groups and government agencies. The event will include free food and drinks, dozens of kid-friendly games and activities, inflatables, live music, and more. More than 50 local agencies will be represented, including the Springfield-Greene County Library Center mobile unit and the Pregnancy Care Center mobile unit. CoxHealth will provide free vision and health screenings.

“This is a great opportunity for the community to have a free and fun outing, and to learn about all the groups in the area that provide help to those in need,” says Dan Prater, director of Drury’s Center for Nonprofit Communication, which is co-organizing the event. “It’s going to be a great family-friendly day with all the activities we have planned.”

Food and drinks will be available starting at 11 a.m. The first 500 kids will receive a free swimsuit, towel and city pool pass.


Media Contact: Dan Prater – Director, Center for Nonprofit Communication. Office: (417) 873-7443. Email: dprater@drury.edu.

Second annual ‘531 Challenge’ fundraiser enters final stretch

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 26, 2015 — Drury University’s second annual “531 Challenge” fundraising campaign is entering its final week. The campaign’s goal is for at least 531 individual donors give to Drury in some capacity during a six-week period that ends on the final day of May, or 5/31.

The campaign is focused on participation rather than a specific dollar amount, which is reflected in this year’s theme, “Every Donor Matters.” If the participation goal is met by May 31, alumnus and Trustee Bill Vaughan ’74, and his wife Kathy, will contribute an additional $20,000 to build academic success, support student engagement, and provide student scholarships.

“During our inaugural 531 Challenge last year, donors contributed more than $623,000 to the Drury Annual Fund,” says Dianne Johnson, vice president for development and alumni relations. “But more important, we exceeded our participation goal. More than half of those who gave were alumni – but the total also included current students, parents, corporate donors, faculty, staff and friends of the university. The challenge demonstrated the power of community here at Drury.”

VIDEO: Drury Needs Your Help in the 531 Challenge!

The Drury Annual Fund is made possible through thousands of valuable gifts – of all sizes – from that community. It is a vital source of funding that provides flexibility to cover the most needed expenses to support the entire institution and improve the student experience today and in the future.

For more information on giving, visit www.drury.edu/alumni.


Drury University welcomes six new members to Board of Trustees

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 22, 2015 — Drury University has welcomed six new members to its Board of Trustees. The new members elected to the board are:

Kris Anderson

Kris Anderson

Kris Anderson, Frontenac, Missouri – Anderson returns to the Board of Trustees, having previously served from 1993-1997. He is a retired construction executive who spent 33 years with St. Louis-based McCarthy Building Companies, one of America’s largest diversified contractors. He currently has a design/build/development consulting business, Anderson Associates II, with clients throughout the nation and is on several nonprofit boards in St. Louis. Anderson was born in Canada and lived in Salem, Missouri, before attending Drury. He earned degrees in economics and political science from Drury in 1977 and an MBA from Washington University’s Olin School in 1980.

Curtis Dinan

Curtis Dinan

 Curtis Dinan, Tulsa, Oklahoma – Dinan is senior vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer of ONE Gas. ONE Gas was spun off from ONEOK Inc., which Dinan joined in 2004 as vice president and chief accounting officer after being an audit partner with Arthur Andersen LLP and Grant Thornton LLP. He serves on the board of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America and is an advisory board member for the Breech School of Business. Dinan earned degrees in accounting and business administration from Drury in 1989 and is a graduate of Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management program. 

Steve Seibert

Steve Seibert

Steve Seibert, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – Seibert is currently vice president and assistant general counsel with the Williams Companies, Inc. He received his Bachelor of Architecture from Drury in 1988 and a law degree from Washington University in 1991. Seibert has been active in the Drury Alumni Association for many years and served as co-chair of the 2003-04 Drury Fund campaign. He currently serves on the board of the Pittsburgh Opera and has also been involved with Legal Aid of Oklahoma, Trout Unlimited and the Yellowstone Park Foundation.

Ron Staab

Ron Staab

Ron Staab, Columbus, Ohio – Staab has spent 30 years in the retail world, including three years as COO at Arhaus Furniture, 16 years with Frito-Lay and 10 years with L Brands. He is now an executive professor of production operations and marketing at Capital University. Staab earned a business administration degree from Drury in 1984 and an MBA from Mississippi College in 1991.

George Thompson

George Thompson

George Thompson, Springfield, Missouri – Thompson is a dealer principal for Thompson Auto Sales and returns to the Board of Trustees, having previously served from 2004-14. He is on the Cadillac National Advisors Board and has served as vice-chairman of the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce board. Thompson has also been a past member of the boards of the YMCA, the Girls Club, Hickory Hills Country Club and the Missouri Auto Dealers Association. Thompson earned degrees in business administration and economics from Drury in 1970.

Mark Walker

Mark Walker

Mark Walker, San Jose, California – Walker was named Chairman and CEO of Springfield-based trucking company TransLand in 2013. Prior to that, he held leadership positions at Applied Materials and the Applied Materials Foundation in Santa Clara, Calif. Before that, he spent six years as president and CEO of United Way Silicon Valley in San Jose, Calif., following a 23-year career with SBC Communications (AT&T). Walker earned degrees in business administration and economics from Drury in 1979.

“Drury is fortunate to have a board of trustees who care deeply for the mission of the university and about boldly taking Drury into a new era in higher education,” said Dr. David Manuel, Drury president. “We value the board’s leadership and expertise and this new group of trustees complements the existing board in every way.”

Two trustees are rotating off the board: James Bone and John Twitty. Photos of the six new members are attached. More information about all of the members of the Board of Trustees can be found online.


Drury hosts recognition ceremony for promising Missouri scholars

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 22, 2015 — The Drury Center for Gifted Education, in partnership with the Duke University Talent Identification Program (TIP), will honor more than 400 of Missouri’s most promising young scholars at a recognition ceremony at 11 a.m. today, Friday, May 22 in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. Central High School Student and former Duke TIP honoree, Amanda Morrison, will be the keynote speaker.

To qualify for recognition, seventh-grade honorees must take the ACT or SAT and score at a level equal to or better than 50 percent of the high school juniors and seniors who took the test. Duke TIP, a nonprofit organization, has conducted an annual search for academically talented youth in the state of Missouri as well as 15 other states since its founding in 1980.

Drury University has hosted the annual statewide recognition event since 1981. Representatives from Drury, Duke TIP and Springfield Public Schools’ gifted education program will be available for comment to the media before or after the ceremony. Members of the media can contact Media Relations Director Mike Brothers at (417) 873-7390 to make arrangements.

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. Each summer, more than 700 children from pre-K through high school attend Drury’s residential and non-residential pre-college programs. Visit Drury Gifted Education for more information.


SIVA visiting artists to give public lectures at Springfield Art Museum

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 18, 2015 — The Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA) at Drury University is pleased to present SIVA Currents, a new summer lecture series presented in partnership with the Springfield Art Museum. SIVA Currents gives the public an opportunity to hear from the program’s Visiting Artist Fellows, a diverse group of international artists representing a range of contemporary practices and disciplines. The artists will discuss their work and careers during the presentations.

All lectures are free and open to the public and begin at 6:30 p.m. More information about each artist can be found at the SIVA website.

Thursday, June 11: Visual artist Matt Borruso. Borruso’s work examines processes of replication in various forms such as paintings, wax castings, found sculptural objects and digital files.

Thursday, June 25: Performance artist Ben Kinsley. Kingsley’s projects have ranged from directing surprise theatrical performances in the homes of strangers to planting a buried treasure in the streets of Mexico City (yet to be found).

Ben Kinsley

Ben Kinsley

Thursday, July 9: Video artist and educator Chelsea Knight. Knight’s recent subjects include a United Nations diplomat, interrogators from the Iraq War and Tea Party members.

Thursday, July 23: Artist Christine Laquet. Based in Nantes, France, Laquet uses of different forms of expression to challenge binary constructs such as self versus other and nature versus culture.

About SIVA

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.

Applications are currently being accepted for this year’s session, which runs from June 1 to Aug. 7. For more information, go to www.drury.edu/SIVA.


Media Contact – Sarrita Hunn, Director of Summer Institute for Visual Arts: shunn@drury.edu.