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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


Drury University recognizes faculty & student mid-semester accolades

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 22, 2016 — Drury University is entering the second half of the spring semester and would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the academic accomplishments of various faculty and staff over the past few months.


  • Michael Buono, Emeritus Professor and former Director of Hammons School of Architecture, has been elected to the American Institute of Architects prestigious College of Fellows. Buono is the only the third AIA member from the southwest Missouri area to be elected.
  • For the 2nd year in a row, a Drury student has been accepted in the UDream Program at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh. Olivia Freese has been selected this year. In 2015, Tamara Cartwright was selected.

Art & Art History:

  • Rebecca Miller, Associate Professor, will assume the leadership of Drury’s Arts Administration program in the fall.

Behavioral Science:

  • Dr. Patricia McEachern, Dorothy Jo Barker Endowed Professor for the Study of Animal Rights, has been invited on a permanent Fellow with the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics at Oxford University in England. McEachern has been invited to teach in the Summer School there in July.

Computer Science:

  • Nine Drury students competed in the 2015 International Collegiate Programming Contest.


  • Dr. Kevin Henderson, Assistant Professor, recently had his essay, “Why Do You Make Me Do This?: Spectator Empathy, Self-Loathing Lawmen, and Nicholas Ray’s Noir Vision in On Dangerous Ground” accepted into the summer issue of the peer-reviewed journal Interdisciplinary Humanities.


  • Dr. Natalie Wlodarczyk, assistant professor, was elected to a 5 year term on the Board of Directors of the Certification Board for Music Therapists, the national credentialing organization for music therapy.
  • Dr. Tina Claussen, associate professor, became a member of the Missouri Jazz Orchestra.
  • Dr. Stephen Bomgardner, professor, had an original work selected for a lecture-recital at the National Conference of The College Music Society next October.


  • Jessica Kjeldgaard, Drury student, has received the Barbara Lotze scholarship for future teachers of physics from the American Association of Physics Teachers.

Political Science:

  • Several Drury students won awards at the Midwest Model UN Conference in St. Louis earlier this year.
    • Nargiss Pourmand, representing New Zealand, won an award for Best Position Paper in the Security Council.
    • Sheri Walsh, representing Chile, won a Best Delegate/Delegates’ Choice award chosen by her fellow students in the Security Council.
    • Christina FaoroAlex Johnson and Emma-Quin Smith, representing Spain, won an overall Best Delegation award for work in the General Assembly.


  • Drury senior Briana Hopkins served as a Student Arts Advocate in Washington, D.C. in March.


SIVA announces 2016 Visiting Artist Fellows, calls for applications

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 16, 2016 — The Summer Institute for Visual Arts at Drury University has confirmed its 2016 Visiting Artists and is now accepting applications for new students. The priority deadline for admission is March 31.

The Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA) at Drury University is dedicated to advanced research and practice in the field of contemporary visual arts. Each summer, SIVA offers four Visiting Artist Fellowships to internationally recognized artists and a Master of Arts in Studio Art and Theory (MART) program for emerging and aspiring artists.

VIDEO: Drury’s Summer Institute for Visual Arts

New this year is the Tom Parker Scholarship, established by Earl and Mary Jane Pool in honor of Tom Parker, emeritus faculty and founding director of the Summer Institute for Visual Arts. The $10,000 scholarship is awarded to one full-time, degree-seeking student toward tuition costs over the course of the program and is based on the strength of their portfolio, other application materials, and financial need. To be considered, applicants must be fully admitted to the MART program by the March 31 priority deadline.

2016 Visiting Artist Fellows

Mary Walling Blackburn mobilizes a range of materials in the service of her work: herbs, clay, leather, concrete stain, live performance, plywood, video, feathers, hot tub, and seismic recordings amongst an array of other substances. She has taught at The Cooper Union School of Art, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, The Ox-Bow School of Art, The Harry Van Arsdale Jr. Center for Labor Studies, and New York University.

Nina Bovasso is predominantly a maker of works on paper, which was greatly influenced by her mother who was a textile designer. Bovasso’s work has been exhibited internationally including Schema Projects (Brooklyn), Inman Gallery (Houston), Galeria Casado Santapau (Madrid), Cleveland MOCA, and New Museum. She has held visiting artist positions at the University of Georgia, California College of Art, University of Virginia, and University of Tennessee.

Felipe Castelblanco is a multidisciplinary artist, working at the intersection of socially engaged and new media art. Felipe has been the recipient of the 2013 John Fergus Post MFA Fellowship at The Ohio State University; the 2014 Starr Fellowship at the Royal Academy in London, UK; and most recently commissioned to develop a large participatory project in the Philippines through the American Arts Incubator exchange program.

Ian Giles explores how human relations create an energy as palpable as traditional sculptural materials. His work has been exhibited internationally at Poole Museum, Glasgow International and Tate Britain among others. Forthcoming projects include a collaborative performance with the Whitechapel Gallery Youth Forum. Ian received an MFA from Slade School of Fine Art and he is an Associate Lecturer for the Fine Art BFA at Chelsea College of Art and Design.

Gravity Bound

“Gravity Bound,” painting by Mary Walling Backburn.

Call for Applications

SIVA’s Master of Arts in Studio Art and Theory (MART) program offers students an intensive summer residency experience with an international roster of visiting artists. It features an artist-centered approach to modern and contemporary art history, theory and criticism, and supports individualized portfolio and professional development.

By combining artist residency and graduate program structures, the MART degree program bridges an academic undergraduate education and a professional art practice. The curriculum consists of three summer sessions of intensive artistic engagement that include studio and visual culture courses plus one online seminar. Participating artists develop a capacity for independent practice and scholarship under the guidance of visiting artist fellows, faculty and staff, who, as experienced and engaged practitioners, provide first-hand understanding of contemporary art issues.

This interdisciplinary program benefits emerging and aspiring artists who hold an undergraduate degree (from any field) who wish to develop their art practice, artists who wish to develop a portfolio for application to MFA programs, non-degree seeking artists interested in the opportunity to work with our visiting artist fellows, and art educators wanting to pursue their Master’s degree during the summer months.

For more complete information about the program, visiting artist fellows, eligibility and cost, visit the SIVA website at www.drury.edu/siva. Interested individuals are encouraged to contact the program at mart-siva@drury.edu.


Media Contact: Sarrita Hunn SIVA Director, shunn@drury.edu.

Drury offers new summer camps in arts, architecture, sciences & social media

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 11, 2016 — Springfield area K-12 students have a new option for academic exploration this summer.

Drury University will offer five engaging non-residential camps for elementary and high school students this summer. These “Summer Splash!” camps will be held throughout the month of June and taught by Drury professors in academic areas ranging from biomedical science to ceramics to social media storytelling. The programs are hands-on, activity-oriented, and highly motivating. They will give students opportunities to explore their own creativity and build friendships with peers who have similar interests.

Courses have limited enrollments and may fill quickly. All applications, registrations and fees must be received by June 2. Tuition rates range from $75 to $250. For more information and to apply online, go to www.drury.edu/summer-splash; or call (417) 873-7225.

The camps include:

Clay Time! (Ages 6-11)
Students will explore their creative side by playing with clay. Various hand building techniques, glazing, and wheel throwing will be covered. All projects will be fired and glazed for students to take home. There will be two sessions – one for younger students ages 6-8 from June 6 to 17, and one for older students ages 9-11 from June 20 to July 1.

Biomedical and Health Sciences Camp (Grades 10-12)
Students participating in the camp will engage in classroom and laboratory learning activities, as well as discussions with healthcare providers to learn how science informs modern medical practices. Runs June 13 to 17.

Architecture Design/Make Camp (Grades 10-12)
This camp is intended for high school students with an interest in architectural design and making. Students will be introduced to conceptualizing, sketching, digital and hand drafting and model-making and full-scale fabrication and construction. Students can also earn dual credit for ARCH 110: Introduction to Architecture. Runs June 6-17.

Social Media Storytelling Camp (Grades 11 & 12)
Students will learn the basics of file/photo editing and social media messaging to tell social stories. There will be a mix of how-to seminars/discussions and hands-on activities where students learn to use smartphones as mobile creation studios. June 15 (one day only).

Drury Jazz Workshop (Grades 9-12)
Held in the evenings, this performance-based experience for big band is ideal for both experienced jazz students and those wishing to develop new skills. Daily activities include rehearsals, sectionals, special sessions, and performances by area jazz groups. Highly advanced 8th Grade students will be considered, with instructor recommendation. Runs June 6-10.

Drury & OTC develop new agreements for degree completion

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — New collaborative agreements between Ozarks Technical Community College and Drury University will provide OTC students with a seamless transfer to Drury University’s College of Continuing Professional Studies.

The first agreement allows OTC graduates with an associate degree in Fire Science Technology to transfer to Drury’s Emergency Management program. The second agreement helps OTC students pursuing an associate degree in Environmental Science transfer to Drury’s Environmental Management and Assessment program.

OTC’s Fire Science Technology program is the college’s first technical degree to fully transfer to a four-year institution. Drury’s Emergency Management degree is one of only two such programs offered in the state of Missouri. It can be completed entirely online.

“Previously, there was no option for mid-level firefighters to transition into a baccalaureate program,” said Dan Whisler, OTC Fire Science Technology instructor. “This partnership with Drury will open doors and ultimately lead to promotional opportunities for the men and women who risk their lives for our community.”

OTC’s Environmental Science program began at the OTC Waynesville Center and recently expanded to the OTC Lebanon Center and Richwood Valley Campus. The program is grant funded and offers tuition assistance to a specific demographic of students.

“Our Environmental Science degree provides students with the tools needed to begin careers in conservation, compliance, and occupational health and safety. By partnering with Drury, students will be able to further their environmental education and fully explore future career options,” said Alexander Neeley, OTC Environmental Science Coordinator.

“We’re pleased to partner with OTC on these degree programs, and to provide an avenue for students to complete four-year degrees in these in-demand fields,” said Aaron Jones, Dean of Drury’s College of Continuing Professional Studies. “Drury is committed to access and flexibility for our CCPS students.”

Individuals can learn more about OTC’s degree and certificate programs here. Information about Drury’s College of Continuing and Professional Studies can be found at drury.edu/ccps.


Media contacts: Kristy Nelson, Director of Marketing for Drury CCPS • 417-873-7317 • knelson008@drury.edu; or Laura French, Coordinator of Public Information • 417-447-2659 • 417-840-4760 • frenchl@otc.edu.



Meador series guest lecture to focus on race, inequality and politics

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Feb. 29, 2016 — Drury University’s L.E. Meador Center for Politics & Citizenship continues its inaugural speaker series with a lecture at 6 p.m. Thursday by Dr. Rodney Hero, immediate past president of the American Political Science Association. The event will be held at Lay Hall Auditorium and is open to the public.

Hero is the first Latino to hold the top position with the APSA, and his research and teaching focus on American democracy as viewed through the lenses of racial and ethnic politics. In his 35-year career, Hero has taught at Notre Dame and the University of Colorado at Boulder and is now the Haas Chair in Diversity and Democracy at the University of California at Berkeley.

Hero’s lecture, titled “Race, Ethnicity and (In)Equality in American Politics” is part of the Meador Center speaker series “Created Equal: Rights, Liberties, and Citizenship.” The Meador Center was established in the fall of 2015 as a nexus for student pursuits, faculty scholarship, and thought-provoking community programming and events.

“The issues of race, ethnicity, and inequality are always of vital importance in politics, and they are magnified in an election year,” said Dr. Dan Ponder, L.E. Meador Chair of Political Science at Drury. “Professor Hero is the leading expert on these issues, and with Super Tuesday just two days before his lecture, his insights are particularly timely.”

In conjunction with Hero’s visit, a roundtable discussion on the topic “Race & Ethnicity on Campus” will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, March 4 at the Drury Diversity Center; it is also open to the public. Besides Hero, other roundtable participants will include: Lawrence Anderson, manager of diversity and inclusion for Springfield Public Schools; Hadeil Ali, Drury political science major; Professor Greg Booker, chair of the Inclusion Council at Drury; Lyle Foster, owner of Big Momma’s Café; Yolanda Lorge, president of Grupo Latinoamericano; Abram McGull, assistant United States attorney; and Wes Pratt, assistant to the president at Missouri State University.

About the L.E. Meador Center for Politics & Citizenship

Dr. Lewis Elbern (L.E.) Meador taught political science at Drury College for nearly 50 years beginning in 1913 and was a revered civic leader who played key roles in shaping the Missouri Constitution and Springfield City Charter. Inspiration for the center’s mission comes from the words of Meador himself, who felt his students “should take a constructive and active part in trying to bring about a more democratic and more hopeful world in which future generations can live.” The Center carries out that mission through financial support of student scholarship and an annual speaker series addressing a range of pressing political and civic issues.


Media Contact: Dr. Dan Ponder, L.E. Meador Chair of Political Science: (417) 873-7394 or deponder@drury.edu.