A Drury professor studies baptismal fonts of the Middle Ages

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 2, 2013 — When most people think about fonts, Times New Roman and Garamond may come to mind, but one Drury professor is interested in a different type of font used long ago, baptismal fonts. Drury Art History Professor Tom Russo has received a $4,500 grant from Yale University’s Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art (London) to research a previously unknown group of baptismal fonts from the Middle Ages.

Dr. Russo has already conducted research in Britain to document surviving sculpture from 1066-1200. During his research, Dr. Russo believes he has discovered a group of nine fonts that appear to come from the same workshop.

“Around the 11th century, infant baptism of Christians increased tremendously with the population boom in Europe” Russo said. “As a result, we see a massive growth in the production of baptismal fonts and baptism develops from a privilege of the bishops to one regularly performed by priests in their parish churches. Only a handful of font ‘groups’ have been identified and all are in the south of England; the fonts in the group I’m analyzing all come from the same quarry in the east midlands region and that, along with their design, indicates a different workshop from any historians had previously known.”

Dr. Russo’s research will seek to locate the production of the fonts in the medieval quarrying industry, and the economic expansion of the time reflected in the rebuilding of parochial churches.

Dr. Russo studies a baptismal font from the Middle Ages

“This discovery has the potential to give us insight into the connection between rural religious practices and economic development of the time,” Russo said.  “We don’t have a lot of written records for rural activities then.  Yet thousands of parish churches are being built across the countryside and furnished with fonts. I suspect this group of fonts was made by a local workshop, rather than a team of traveling stone carvers. If so, it gives us a window into rural manufacturing and how it tied in with the church building craze. The parish church system is emerging at this time and having a transformative effect on the social, economic, and religious fabric of medieval life in the relations among villagers, clergy, and the lords that controlled the churches.”

Dr. Russo will conduct the bulk of his research this summer in the villages of the county of Lincolnshire, England as well as in research libraries in London.

Media Contact: Dr. Tom Russo, Professor of Art History, Office: (417) 873-7413, Email: trusso@drury.edu


Drury University to cancel classes on April 8 at its Springfield campus to encourage attendance at NCAA Championship

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 1, 2013 — In an effort to allow Drury students, faculty and staff to travel safely to and from the NCAA Division II National Championship game on Sunday, April 7 in Atlanta, Drury will operate with a minimal staff at its Springfield campus on Monday, April 8. This means classes before 5 p.m. at Drury’s Springfield campus are canceled, and staff and faculty can travel back from Atlanta without using a personal day or vacation.

All classes after 5 p.m. in Springfield, and all classes at Drury’s branch campuses will go on as scheduled on Monday, April 8.

“We want the Drury community to have the opportunity to go to Atlanta to cheer on the Panthers,” President Todd Parnell said. “But we want to make sure they do it safely. This will allow fans to travel on Saturday, attend Sunday’s game and then make their way back to Springfield on Monday in time for evening classes.”

Housing and the cafeteria will be open on Monday, April 8, otherwise, Drury’s Springfield campus will operate as if classes before 5 p.m. were canceled due to weather.

Drury advanced to Sunday’s title game against Metropolitan State (Colo.) with a 107-97 victory over Western Washington at the NCAA Division II Final Four in Louisville on Saturday, March 30.

Sunday’s championship game will be broadcast on CBS at 3 p.m. Central Time. Locally, in the Springfield television market, the game will air on KOLR.


Where to watch: Drury v. W. Washington on Saturday at 1:30 p.m. (CT)

March 29, 2013 — The Drury University Men’s Basketball Team will face Western Washington in the Panthers’ first ever trip to the NCAA Division II Final Four on Saturday, March 30 at Freedom Hall in Louisville, Ky. Tip-off is at 1:30 p.m. Central Time.

Drury fans wishing to watch the game can see it locally in the Springfield area on KOZL Channel 27. The game will be broadcast nationally on CBS Sports Network. Drury alumnus John Miller will have the radio broadcast on Jock 98.7.

For Drury fans who want to watch the game together, there will be a watch party on Saturday in the upstairs portion of Springfield Brewing Company.


Drury alumnus and indie band musician will discuss social media at Drury on C-Street

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 28, 2013 — Drury on C-Street will feature 2005 Drury alumnus Phil Dickey on Friday, April 5, at 7:30 p.m. in a Creative Conversation. Drury on C-Street is located at 233 E. Commercial Street. This event is free and open to the public.

Phil Dickey, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin

Dickey has traveled the world as a multi-instrumentalist for Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin (SSLYBY), an indie pop band that originated in Springfield. SSLYBY has gained notice within the indie culture, in addition to its song “Oregon Girl,” which was featured on the television show The OC, and a record label with Polyvinyl Record Co. Dickey serves as the band’s director of media.

This discussion is part of Drury University’s 2012-2013 Theme Year series, Voices Unbound: New Media and the Future of Democracy, which is devoted to exploring how media and technology are changing the way we communicate and interact, and the implications for journalism and democracy.

For more details about speakers visit www.drury.edu/voicesunbound or contact Theme Year Director Dr. Jonathan Groves at (417) 873-7347.


Drury professor to attend Council on Foreign Relations workshop

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 27, 2013 — Drury Political Science Professor Jeff VanDenBerg has been invited to attend the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) Educator Workshop on April 11 and 12 in New York City.

According to the Council on Foreign Relations, “The purpose of the workshop is to convene post-secondary professors teaching in fields related to international affairs and foreign policy to participate in substantive briefings, including a Middle East update and regional and topical discussion groups; learn about the wide variety of CFR resources available for educators; provide feedback that will inform CFR’s work with the academic community; and discuss best practices for bringing international affairs into the classroom.”

Dr. Jeff VanDenBerg

“CFR is one of the premier organizations on foreign policy in the US, with members including diplomats, lawmakers, scholars and activists,” said VanDenBerg. “I look forward to the opportunity to engage with CFR scholars and educators from around the country on key international issues, and bringing these lessons back to the classroom at Drury. Global citizenship is one of the cornerstones of a Drury education, and this experience will enrich my ability to incorporate the most up-to-date approaches and information on international affairs with my students.”

Dr. VanDenBerg teaches courses in international relations, foreign policy, and Middle East politics. He is the coordinator of the Model United Nations Program and the Director of theMiddle East Studies program at Drury. Dr. VanDenBerg’s research interests focus on Arab politics and international relations in the Middle East. In 2012, he was a Fulbright Teaching Fellow at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.

The cost of attendance to the workshop, travel, meals and lodging is paid for by the Council on Foreign Relations.


Event at Drury explores the impact of the Joplin tornado

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 27, 2013 — How journalists in Joplin survived and told the story of the tornado that devastated their town on May 22, 2011, will be the subject of a Theme Year event on Thursday, April 4.

At 9:30 a.m., Drury will host a screening of the movie “Deadline in Disaster” in Clara Thompson Hall. The documentary tells the story about the Joplin Globe staff trying to put out a paper after the tornado killed dozens and destroyed wide swaths of the city.

At 11 a.m., Drury will host a panel discussion with the filmmakers Beth Pike and Steve Hudnell and Joplin Globe editor Carol Stark in Clara Thompson Hall.

Dr. Jennifer Silva Brown

At 2 p.m., Dr. Jennifer Silva Brown, Drury assistant professor of behavioral science, will present her research on the Joplin survivor project. In 2011 and 2012, Silva Brown and her undergraduate behavioral science students  conducted research on coping and resilience with survivors of the Joplin tornado.

Drury University’s 2012-2013 Theme Year series, Voices Unbound: New Media and the Future of Democracy, is devoted to exploring how media and technology are changing the way we communicate and interact, and the implications for journalism and democracy.

All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted. For more details about speakers visit www.drury.edu/voicesunbound or contact Theme Year Director Dr. Jonathan Groves at (417) 873-7347.


Drury junior earns prestigious internship from the American Advertising Federation

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 25, 2013 — For the fifth time in eight years, a Drury student has been named to the prestigious American Advertising Federation (AAF) Vance L. Stickell Memorial Internship Program. Drury Junior Tinsley Andrews is the latest Drury recipient. The internship program recognizes the top 15 AAF students in the nation.

Tinsley Andrews

Andrews will intern this summer with advertising agency Butler Shine Stern & Partners (BSSP) in San Francisco. BSSP serves many high profile clients, including: Mini car company, clothing manufacturer Columbia, and cell phone maker Nokia.

“The AAF Stickell Internship program is extremely competitive. I’m certain that Tinsley’s writing and critical thinking skills differentiated her from the other applicants,” said Dr. Regina Waters, chair of Drury’s Department of Communication. “She’s going to gain invaluable experience in media strategy at Butler Shine Stern & Partners, an advertising agency that’s recognized for its innovative approach to branding and online media.”

61 students were nominated as the best, most deserving students from their AAF student chapters. Only 15 nominees earned internships. As part of the nomination process, Andrews had to produce a detailed critique of an advertisement, write two short essays, and provide evidence of her academic and leadership qualifications.

Andrews, from the Phoenix, Ariz. area, also competes for Drury’s national champion Swimming and Diving team. She was part of the winning 400 freestyle relay squad that helped the Drury women win its fourth national championship in the last five years.

Past Drury Stickell Award winners:

·      Amanda Combs, 2012

·      Mallory Noelke, 2009

·      Mallorie Rodak, 2008

·      Cynthia Nutter, 2005


A business professor makes the case for the value of the liberal arts

Part of my job as a Drury professor is to advise my management students as they schedule classes. They often are stumped when selecting free electives and classes to meet their general education requirements.  I typically point out that employers want well rounded employees who can draw on a breadth of knowledge. Here’s another reason for taking classes outside of the business school: Those who don’t learn from the past are doomed to sell offensive t-shirts.

Last fall, there was controversy surrounding a t-shirt being sold by the Gap bearing the phrase “Manifest Destiny”.  Facing protests that the shirt could easily be interpreted as glorifying the massacres and cultural destruction of Native Americans, the designer apparently issued a flippant tweet about the survival of the fittest.  Quickly, Gap stopped selling the shirt and issued an apology.

Dr. Amy Lewis

The Gap t-shirt is an excellent example of why it is crucial for business students to have a broad background in the liberal arts.

There are clear attacks on the liberal arts through a devaluation of their contribution to society, and concerns over distributing scarce budget resources. Here’s a reason to support the liberal arts: An American history class might have given a better understanding of the massacres committed under the name of Manifest Destiny.  A sociology class might have given an understanding of the implications of the institutionalized oppression of Native Americans in the aftermath of these programs. A philosophy class might have led those involved to pause and consider the ethical implications of profiting from genocide. A strong liberal arts education might have prevented the backlash and embarrassment a company faced by the sale of this t-shirt.

A well-educated population is crucial for a vibrant economy, and in these times of constrained resources, a liberal arts education might be seen as an unaffordable luxury. I see students questioning the value of the liberal arts core curriculum Drury requires. Too many students say their time is being “wasted” by taking classes outside of their major. However, it is precisely the breadth of background gained by this exploration that is the true value of a liberal arts education.

The broad background provided by a liberal arts education can help students see connections from the past, to understand that there are multiple viewpoints or cultural lenses through which to view the world. To critically think– to stop and realize that “Manifest Destiny” is not just a catchy phrase, but rather a complex issue from our past loaded with pain and outrage.  I’m sure the Gap wishes someone had paid a little more attention in an American History class.


Story by Dr. Amy Lewis, associate professor of management.

This story is adapted from an essay that first appeared in Inside Higher Ed in November and is re-printed with permission.

Drury students conduct service on study abroad trip to South Africa

On Dec. 28, 2012, a group of Drury students and professors left the United States for an impactful adventure in South Africa. The purpose of the study abroad trip was to give students the chance to experience a different part of the world while volunteering in an orphanage and a South African town. What the students saw and did during their time there is an experience that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

Psychology Professors Jennifer Silva Brown and Rachael Herrington led the students on the trip. The first stop was Cape Town, a city filled with diversity, beauty and comfort. For five days, students explored the city, foods, sights and culture. Rebecca Vogt, a senior studying psychology and sociology, went on the study abroad trip to be exposed to a new culture and lifestyle. “I expected to be outside my comfort zone in many instances, but also to learn what it’s like to meet and talk to other people who have grown up with different experiences than my own,” Vogt said.

Drury students and professors with children from the Dream Catcher Foundation’s after school program.

After spending time in Cape Town, the group moved on to Melkhoutfontein, a fishing and farming community with about 2,000 residents. A day was spent volunteering at an orphanage. Many children housed at the orphanage had Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and came from dark pasts. “The amazing thing about the orphanage is that the woman and son that run it do it solely on their own income,” said Dr. Herrington. “They are always in need of help with school supplies and medicine. It’s inspiring that they do so much.”

The next week, Drury students worked with the Dream Catcher Kids, an after-school group created to give children a positive place to go after they finished school for the day in Melkhoutfontein. “The kids were bright, energetic and loved getting to talk and do activities with us,” said Vogt. “It was great to see that we brought something positive to their lives, especially since many of them came from difficult home situations.”

Dr. Silva Brown and Dr. Herrington both agreed that the trip was a success. Each Drury student had the opportunity to authentically experience the local culture within his or her volunteer roles. Some students worked with after-school kids, others worked in a nursery, delivered medicine, or worked in a pharmacy. “Lessons will be there for years to come. We witnessed just how much we take for granted,” said Dr. Silva Brown. The biggest takeaway for Vogt was the realization that everyone comes from a different background, “It’s important to accept and understand differences,” she said. “I feel like I am more culturally aware and a global citizen because of this trip.”

If you are interested in making a donation to the orphanage, please contact Dr. Rachael Herrington at rherrington@drury.edu or 417-873-6920.


Story by Amber Perdue, a senior advertising and public relations major.

Artists can learn and network at Drury on April 6

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 14, 2013 — Drury University will host the sixth annual Self-Employment in the Arts (SEA) OzArts Conference on Saturday, April 6 in the Trustee Science Center from 8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. The conference will focus on the business side of pursuing a visual, performing or literary arts career, as well as review fundamental skills necessary for all self-employed artists. The $30 registration fee includes breakfast and lunch. The conference is free for students.

“Artists don’t have to be starving artists,” said Dr. Kelley Still, executive director of the Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship at Drury University. “The Edward Jones Center is proud to offer this Coleman Foundation initiative to help seasoned professionals and budding entrepreneurs make the most of their art careers and connect with other professionals.”

Phil Dickey, Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin

Speakers include professionals from music, theatre, writing and the visual arts. The featured luncheon keynote speaker is Phillip Dickey, 2005 Drury graduate and musician with Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin. Dickey has traveled the world as thedrummer and business manager for Someone Still Loves You Boris Yeltsin, he was recently appointed by the U.S State Department as a cultural ambassador to Russia, and his songs havebeen featured in television shows and commercials.

Registration is open at www.drury.edu/ejc/sea.  For more information contact Tammy Rogers, tammy@drury.edu, (417) 873-6357.

The Coleman Foundation provided funding for the conference. Free registration for students is madepossible by donations from Student Advocates for the Arts and Drury’s Student Government Association.

Media Contact: Sara Cochran, M.A., Associate Director of the Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship, Office: (417) 873-3014, Mobile: (417) 861-5721, Email: scochran@drury.edu