SIVA student’s “Parts & Pieces” exhibition opens Friday, Sept. 4

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 2, 2015 — The Summer Institute for Visual Arts is pleased to announce James Walley as the winner of a $1,500 student production stipend in partnership with ideaXfactory, and will exhibit his work at the downtown space in September.

An opening reception for Walley’s installation, “Parts & Pieces,” will be held from 6 to 10 p.m., Friday, Sept. 4, at the ideaXfactory, 351 N. Boonville Ave., during First Friday Art Walk.

Walley SIVA exhibit

About the installation

Walley aims to create a sculpture experience that melds the organic human form with the abstract by using wax castings made from volunteers. He held open studio hours during the month of August where visitors were invited to observe the process, ask questions, and volunteer to participate in the casting process. The body parts were then transformed from the wax molds into clay and incorporated into the final installation that will be on view during the First Friday Art Walk.

Funding for the award was made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Art Works grant, which was given to the Springfield Regional Arts Council specifically for ideaXfactory. It is the first NEA Art Works grant award made to a Springfield organization. The ideaXfactory launched in October 2012 as a contemporary art space to sponsor site-specific art installations and non-traditional art projects that would be difficult or impossible to create otherwise.

Walley SIVA exhibit 2

About SIVA

The Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA) at Drury University provides an intensive two-month period each summer to focus on artistic development in a critically driven environment while earning graduate level course credit toward a Master of Arts in Studio Art and Theory degree.

(Photo credits: Russ RuBert)


The Princeton Review names Drury a “Best in the Midwest” college

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., August 31, 2015 — Drury University has again been named one of the best colleges in the Midwest by The Princeton Review. The education services company included Drury in its online listing for “2016 Best Colleges: Region by Region.”

In its profile on Drury, The Princeton Review highlighted Drury’s academic rigor, the school’s personalized approach to learning and teaching, and its beautiful campus. Other factors included a strong focus on sustainability and global awareness, and – in the words of one of the students interviewed by The Princeton Review – Drury’s “mission to give students the opportunity to fight for what they believe in, but to understand the views of others as well.”

“We chose Drury University and the other outstanding institutions on this list primarily for their excellent academics,” said Robert Franek, The Princeton Review’s Senior VP-Publisher.

Editors made selections based on data the company collected from its survey of administrators at several hundred colleges in each region, as well as its staff visits to schools over the years, and the perspectives of college counselors and advisors whose opinions the company solicits. They also gave careful consideration to what students enrolled at the schools reported about their campus experiences on its independent student survey designed to include the same types of questions prospective students might ask on a campus visit.

“Only schools at which we see a strong level of satisfaction among their enrolled students make it to our final slate of regional best college selections,” Franek said.

“The voices of our satisfied students are powerful validation for us,” said Drury president Dr. David Manuel. “Drury’s focus on mentorship, high academics standards and engaged learning are all recognized by our students as keys to their success in life after college.”

There are 159 colleges in 12 Midwestern states on the “Best in the Midwest” list for 2016. Overall, the 649 colleges listed in the North, South, Midwest and West regions constitute about 25 percent of the nation’s 2,500 four-year colleges and universities.

The Princeton Review is a leading tutoring, test prep and college admission services company. Every year, it helps millions of college- and graduate school-bound students achieve their education and career goals through online and in person courses delivered by a network of more than 4,000 teachers and tutors, online resources, and its more than 150 print and digital books published by Penguin Random House. For more information, visit


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

Drury ukulele players take tiny instruments on big trip to Japan

Anyone who has been to Big Momma’s Coffee and Espresso Bar on Tuesdays between 4:30 and 6 p.m. has heard the cheerful sounds of Drury students strumming their ukuleles and singing. These students are part of a club at called DUkes, and this summer they took a break from their normal coffee house venue and played three shows in Isesaki, Japan.

The opportunity was thanks to the Springfield Sister Cities Association. Each year, SSCA chooses a group from Springfield to play at the Isesaki Music Festival in August, and this year the DUkes were the guests of honor.

Members of the DUkes during an Isesaki street parade.

Members of the DUkes take part in an Isesaki street parade.

“It was such an amazing opportunity to represent Drury and Springfield,” says senior Kelsey Pressnall. “Everyone was so welcoming and hospitable during our time in Isesaki.”

The DUkes performed at a local hospital, a welcome dinner, and on the main stage at the festival.

“We found that people loved to clap along to the songs, even if they weren’t ones you’d normally clap to,” Pressnall says. “We’d be singing the folk song ‘500 Miles’ and they would be dutifully clapping. Our audiences were very engaged.”

Mitch Barrett, a senior theatre and education major, says the trip was “the perfect way to begin my senior year.”

Members of the DUkes performing on stage in Isesaki, Japan.

Members of the DUkes performing on stage in Isesaki.

While in Japan, students stayed with a host family to fully immerse themselves in the culture. For many, this was their favorite part.

“My host mom, brother and sister came to see me off when we left Isesaki,” Pressnall says. “I have to admit, I cried a little knowing I might never see them again. And I wasn’t the only DUkes member to do so!”

Led by professor of communication Dr. Rick Maxson, the DUkes have come a long way in their short life as a club – from a small group playing a few local gigs into international travelers representing all of Springfield.

“This was the trip of a lifetime,” Pressnall says. “I couldn’t have imagined a better experience.”

For more photos from the trip, check out the group’s Facebook page. DUkes plays the Japanese Fall Festival in Springfield on Sept. 12 & 13. The festival takes place at the Mizumoto Japanese Stroll Garden in Nathaniel Greene/Close Memorial Park.


 Story by Trevor Cobb, sophomore writing major at Drury. 

Architecture students to demonstrate VR, 3D printing at Ozarks Maker Faire

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 28, 2015 — Drury University students from the Hammons School of Architecture will provide interactive demonstrations on 3D computer modeling, 3D printing and virtual reality at the inaugural Ozarks Mini Maker Faire on Saturday.

The field of architecture is rapidly changing with the evolution and application of advanced technology that is enhancing the way professionals design and build spaces and objects. Students and faculty from the school of architecture will provide a chance to see how 3D computer models can be quickly fabricated into real objects with 3D printing, and how people can be deeply immersed in 3D spaces before they are built using virtual reality technology.

VIDEO: Using Oculus Rift to View Architectural Designs

The Ozarks Mini Maker Faire is a gathering of “makers” who are tech enthusiasts, crafters, educators, tinkerers, hobbyists, engineers, artists, students and commercial exhibitors. The Faire takes place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday at the Springfield Expo Center, 635 St. Louis Street, and at the Discovery Center, 438 E. St. Louis Street.


C-Street Gallery opens “The Way Things Go” exhibition Friday, Sept. 4

SPRINGFIELD, MO., Aug. 24, 2015 – The Drury on C-Street Gallery will open its September exhibition “The Way Things Go” with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m., Friday, September 4. Featured artists Jessica Blackburn, Sarah Jones and Justin Gault are current students in Drury’s Summer Institute for Visual Arts (SIVA). The program allows students to earn a Master of Arts in Studio Art and Theory over the course of three summers.

The Drury on C-Street Gallery is located at 233 E. Commercial St. The opening reception is a free event with food and refreshments provided.

The title of the exhibition, “The Way Things Go,” is a reference to a workshop given by SIVA visiting artist fellow Christine Laquet of Nantes, France, and a 1988 video of the same name by the Swiss artists Peter Fischli and David Weiss. Laquet’s workshop was inspired by the French term “bricolage,” a technique whereby works are constructed from various materials available on hand. “The Way Things Go” presents an imaginative and critical reflection on the everyday, wither it’s through Blackburn’s colloquial phrases painted on found images, Jones’ exploration of costume and role playing in video and painting, or Gault’s generative online performances.

Scene from a video by SIVA student Sarah Jones.

Scene from a video by SIVA student Sarah Jones

This exhibition featuring these three SIVA students will run September 4 through 25. Gallery viewing hours after the opening reception will be from 1 to 5 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays, and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on two Saturdays, September 12 and 19.

For more information, call (417) 873-6359 or visit Drury on C-Street’s Facebook page at 

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.


Media Contact: Leah Hamilton; Director, Arts Administration program. Office: (417) 873-6359; mobile: (417) 224-1018. Email:

Ferrell-Duncan Clinic, Drury partner to enhance pre-med scholarship programs

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 24, 2015 — A generous new long-term financial commitment from Ferrell-Duncan Clinic will create three new programs supporting Drury University undergraduates seeking careers in the medical field.

The agreement strengthens the longtime connection between the clinic and the university, furthering both organizations’ mutual goal of enhancing the state of the healthcare industry in southwest Missouri. The deal is a win-win, bolstering Drury’s historically strong pre-med program while adding a valuable physician recruitment channel for the clinic.

The connections between Drury and Ferrell-Duncan run deep: Ferrell-Duncan co-founder Dr. Thomas Ferrell was a Drury alumnus; Dr. Loren Broaddus is a Life Trustee; and 10 Drury alumni currently serve as physicians at the clinic. The clinic is in partnership with CoxHealth, whose CEO Steve Edwards is a Drury alumnus and a current member of the Board of Trustees.

The five-year agreement provides a total of $30,000 annually for the following programs:

Loren Broaddus Medical Service Scholars – This initiative will build upon the Drury Health Services Corps (DHSC), which sends pre-med students to Jordan Valley Health Clinic for a structured volunteer experience. Drury will now expand that program and send students who have been through the first year of the DHSC to other medical facilities following their work at Jordan Valley. This is important because medical and other health professional schools value undergraduate volunteer experiences that focus on direct interactions with individuals seeking healthcare services.

Thomas Ferrell Medical Relief Travel Grants – These grants will provide funding for travel associated with participation in medical relief programs. Such efforts offer valuable opportunities for students to work with medical professionals providing healthcare to underserved populations. Students in these settings acquire professional experience in healthcare while gaining perspective with populations from varied socio-economic backgrounds.

Douglas Duncan Research Experience in the Natural Sciences (RENS) Fellowship – This program will provide summer funding for students in biomedical research under the direction of a member of the natural sciences faculty. Faculty members serve as mentors and advisors, and individual projects support the goals of a research program that is of scientific merit yet is appropriate for undergraduate students.

An additional portion of the agreement will place a practicing physician from Ferrell-Duncan Clinic in a fellowship position in Drury’s Department of Biology. The physician fellow will teach an annual course in clinical medicine, with lecture and clinical rotation experiences through Ferrell-Duncan, to third- and fourth-year pre-health sciences students.

Members of the Ferrell, Duncan and Broaddus families, along with leaders from CoxHealth, Ferrell-Duncan Clinic and Drury, gathered Thursday to celebrate the agreement.

Members of the Ferrell, Duncan and Broaddus families, along with leaders from CoxHealth, Ferrell-Duncan Clinic and Drury, gathered Thursday to celebrate the agreement.

“CoxHealth and Ferrell-Duncan Clinic are honored to establish this scholarship plan with the faculty, staff and students of Drury University,” said Steve Edwards, CEO and President of CoxHealth. “This legacy scholarship is a key component as these three institutions work cooperatively to prepare future healthcare professionals who will one day add their skills and talents to the Springfield area medical community.”

“I am extremely grateful to Ferrell-Duncan Clinic and the CoxHealth Board of Directors for their support of our pre-health sciences programs,” said Drury President Dr. David Manuel. “This agreement elevates a historical relationship into a true partnership. Coming together as community leaders in healthcare education and delivery offers a multi-dimensional opportunity to expand resources and recruitment for both Ferrell-Duncan and Drury.”

About Drury’s Pre-Health Sciences Programs

Drury has an outstanding track record in preparing students for admission into medical and other health-related professional programs. Excellence in the classroom, research opportunities, internships, and structured volunteer experiences give DU graduates a distinctive and measurable advantage. Each year, Drury sends approximately 20 students to medical school and another 20 to related health professional schools. There are more than 250 Drury graduates currently serving as healthcare professionals in southwest Missouri alone.


Media Contacts: Dr. Beth Harville, Dean, College of Natural & Mathematical Sciences. Office: (417) 873-4085; email: bharville@drury.eduDianne Johnson, Vice President of Development & Alumni Relations. Office: (417) 873-7303; email:

Internship at Whole Foods a natural fit for high-flying PR student

The first time Kathryn Wilson ever shopped at a Whole Foods Market was when she arrived at the company’s headquarters in Austin, Texas, this summer as an intern with the company’s public relations department.

But familiarity with the supermarket chain specializing in organic food wasn’t a job requirement. It was the talents and skills Wilson honed as an advertising major in Drury’s Department of Communication that took her to Austin.

She was one of just 19 college students across the nation selected for the American Advertising Federation’s highly selective Stickell internship program this year. Drury has a remarkable track record with the program. Wilson is the third Drury student in three years to be selected and seventh since 2005.

Kathryn Wilson

Kathryn Wilson

Wilson, who is from Nixa, says she soaked up an incredible amount of knowledge in her 10 weeks on the job.

“You can really tell they are leading the charge in a lot of areas,” she says of Whole Foods’ approach to PR and branding. “It’s just a great group of people who are incredibly talented.”

Wilson immediately jumped into working with industry-specific software, analyzing the company’s Twitter account and working with outside PR firms on a variety of projects. She recommended changes to the company’s PR Twitter account that are now taking shape, and she handled story requests from national media outlets such as Men’s Journal.

Throughout, she felt like a truly valued member of the team at market-leading company. She relished the opportunity to simply drop into the PR director’s office to talk, and felt gratified that Whole Foods was putting her work to good use.

“That was just a great philosophy for me because I felt appreciated and needed,” she says. “I felt like I was an asset.”

Wilson says Drury has been a major asset to her, especially her time on the AD Team with Dr. Regina Waters.

“The Drury communication department has been incredibly helpful in boosting me in my career and what I want to do later in life after college,” she says. “Dr. Waters in particular has been such a great mentor and cheerleader who’s always in my corner.”


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

Outstanding Drury students and faculty recognized

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., August 20, 2015 — Drury University recognized outstanding faculty and second-year students at the 2015 Matriculation Convocation this morning. This ceremony officially begins Drury’s 142nd academic year with an address from President David Manuel.

A committee formed of students and faculty selects recipients of the faculty awards. Nominations are received from students, faculty, administrators and alumni. Both of the honorees were recognized for challenging, engaging and inspiring students both inside and outside the classroom.

• Faculty Award for Teaching: Kevin Henderson, Ph.D. Assistant Professor of English
• Faculty Award for Leadership: Robin Sronce, Ph.D. Dean, Breech School of Business

Henderson and Sronce

Henderson and Sronce

In addition, the Judge Warren White Scholars were honored. Each honoree will receive a $600 scholarship. These students have the highest grade point averages after completion of their first year at Drury. Mr. Warren White graduated from Drury in 1904 and served as a Greene County circuit court judge for 36 years.

The 2015 Judge Warren White Scholars are:

• Kimberly M. Edwards – Bridgeton, Missouri
• Austin Hansen – Lake Ozark, Missouri
• Makayla Jordan-Diemler – Jefferson City, Missouri
• Rachel Krueger – Lenexa, Kansas
• Bre Legan – Phillipsburg, Missouri
• Meagan Ley – New Haven, Missouri
• Stephanie Morrison – Ozark, Missouri
• Hailey Nale – Springfield, Missouri (Central High School)
• Inga Nordgren – Eureka Springs, Arkansas
• Anne Marie Schudy – Springfield, Missouri (Central High School)
• Shannen Stout – Blue Springs, Missouri
• Caroline Tomanek – Springfield, Missouri (Kickapoo High School)
• Wyatt Whitman – Lake Ozark, Missouri
• Bailey Williams – Farmington, Missouri


Drury University establishes Meador Center for Politics & Citizenship

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Aug. 18, 2015 — Drury University is pleased to announce the establishment of the Meador Center for Politics and Citizenship. Dedicated to the academic inquiry of political engagement, the Center will be a nexus for student pursuits, faculty scholarship, and thought-provoking community programming and events.

The Center is named for Dr. Lewis Elbern (L.E.) Meador, a longtime professor of political science at Drury College for nearly 50 years beginning in 1913. Local residents know the name thanks to Meador Park. But they may not know Meador was a revered civic leader who played key roles in shaping the current Missouri Constitution and Springfield City Charter. He was named “Springfieldian of the 20th Century” by the Springfield Chamber of Commerce in 1973.

L.E. Meador

L.E. Meador

The Center’s inspiration for its 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 Meador Center will immediately begin carrying out that mission in two ways:

  • Financial support of student scholarship, internships, study away/abroad opportunities and conference attendance.
  • An annual speaker series that will bring notable speakers and academics to Springfield to address a range of pressing political and civic issues.

The inaugural theme for the Center in 2015-16 is “Created Equal: Civil Rights, Liberties & Citizenship” and the first featured speaker will be CNN analyst and New Yorker staff writer Jeffrey Toobin at 7:30 p.m., Oct. 28 at Clara Thompson Hall. The event is FREE and open to the public. Toobin’s topic will be “Inside the World of the Supreme Court.” A Harvard Law graduate, Toobin is the author of two bestsellers about the nation’s top court – “The Nine” and “The Oath.”

Jeffery Toobin

Jeffery Toobin

The Center’s inaugural chair is Dr. Daniel Ponder, professor of political science at Drury since 2006.

“I’m extremely excited about the opportunity for Drury and our Political Science Department to expand our work with students and our community – both locally and globally,” Ponder said. “Drury has a stellar record when it comes to sending successful students on to law schools and similar professional programs, and the Meador Center will allow us to build upon and enhance that work.”

Dan Ponder

Dan Ponder

For more information, visit


Media Contact: Dr. Daniel Ponder, L.E. Meador Chair in Political Science. Office: (417) 873-7394; email:

Music professor’s work takes the stage at Edinburgh Festival

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

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

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

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

Dr. Carlyle Sharpe

Dr. Carlyle Sharpe

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

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

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

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

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

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


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