Drury partners with Duke University to recognize promising young scholars

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 25, 2017—Drury University’s Center for Gifted Education and Pre-College Programs, together 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. Friday at the O’Reilly Family Event Center. Central High School senior and international baccalaureate student Isabel Lai 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 juniors and seniors who took the test. Seventh graders only need to achieve a qualifying score on any one section to be recognized by Duke TIP, or a student could qualify with slightly lower marks on a majority of sections. Duke TIP, a nonprofit organization, has conducted an annual search for academically talented youth across the country since its founding in 1980. Drury University has hosted the annual statewide recognition event since 1981.

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 educational camps for gifted students.

More information: https://www.drury.edu/gifted-education.


Film shows impact of Joplin tornado healing garden created by DU students

Media Contact: Traci Sooter – Professor of Architecture; Director of Design-Build Programs: (417) 234-6405

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 22, 2017 — Since opening three years ago, the Landscapes of Resilience Butterfly Garden & Overlook in Joplin has helped the residents of a tornado-ravaged community experience healing and recovery through nature and thoughtful design.

Today, on the sixth anniversary of the Joplin tornado, a short documentary film telling the story of this project – designed by the Drury University Hammons School of Architecture’s Design-Build Program – is being released.

The seven-minute film, titled “Butterfly Angels,” shines a light on an effort that drew together an eclectic and passionate team of people, many from Joplin and the surrounding area; others from a thousand miles away. Together, they focused on conceptualizing and creating a green space, a healing garden, for the purpose of helping the people of Joplin deal with the enormous trauma inflicted by the tornado.

The film will be available for viewing starting Monday at: http://www.natureeffect.org/Joplin. It will also be featured by AccuWeather on television and online.


“The devastation that Joplin experienced was beyond what most of us can fully imagine,” said Alden Stoner, the producer and co-director behind “Butterfly Angels.” “When we think of disaster recovery, most of us envision the rebuilding process — the reconstruction of homes, businesses — but in truth, it’s about something much deeper.”

Among the voices heard in the film are those of Drury architecture professors and co-lead project designers Traci Sooter and Nancy Chikaraishi; and Chris Cotten, head of Joplin’s Parks and Recreation Department and a Drury alumnus. Others include former mayor Melodee Colbert-Kean and Cornell University’s Keith Tidball, who has long studied how nature can be a source of resilience for communities.

The Garden & Overlook project showcases a unique aspect of the Hammons School’s Design-Build Program: a “whole school” approach that pulls in students and faculty members from across Drury’s liberal arts spectrum. English students collected and transcribed survivor stories, which inspired design students prior to the build, and were eventually quoted on the storyboards in the garden. Psychology faculty has studied the healing aspects of the garden for Joplin residents. More than 60 students, staff and faculty converged on the site to install some features. Music Therapy students played music to motivate, uplift, and rejuvenate volunteers.

“Butterfly Angels” was produced by Stoneworth Studios, in partnership with the TKF Foundation, a nonprofit devoted to enabling more opportunities for people to experience the healing and restorative benefits of nature. The Foundation, through its Nature Sacred Award program, was a major funder of the Garden, which is also serving as a research site for Tidball and a team of fellow researchers from Drury University and the USDA National Forest Service. The team is seeking to learn more about the benefits of specific aspects of these types of green spaces.

Learn more about the Butterfly Garden & Overlook at: http://www.drury.edu/butterfly-garden.


Rosalie O’Reilly Wooten awarded Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters

The O’Reilly Family Event Center was a fitting location when Drury University presented an Honorary Degree of Humane Letters to Rosalie O’Reilly Wooten at its spring commencement this month.

That’s because Wooten was one of the key drivers behind the conception, construction and completion of the center, which opened in 2010 and is home to Drury men’s and women’s basketball games, volleyball games, concerts, lectures and commencements. Wooten has been a member of the Drury Board of Trustees for the past decade, and her foresight and leadership helped make the O’Reilly Center a reality. The space is one of the best in NCAA Division II sports and is a gathering place for key moments at Drury. It’s also a LEED-Gold certified building.


It’s just one of the many ways in Wooten ’64 has positively impacted life at Drury and the lives of countless others in the Springfield region. The Springfield native was awarded the honorary degree for an outstanding career and a lifetime of service.

“Rosalie is being recognized today as a model businesswoman, philanthropist, and friend,” said Lyle Reed, chair of the Drury Board of Trustees, at the commencement.

After graduating from Drury University, Wooten taught high school English for thirteen years. She spent most of her career as an Executive Vice President at her family business, O’Reilly Automotive Inc., from 1993 to 2002. She managed telecommunications, risk management and human resources. During her time there she was a creative and innovative thinker with effective human resources management and goal setting abilities combined with superior leadership, team building, communication, interpersonal, and presentation skills.

When Wooten began working at O’Reilly, very near to the company’s IPO, the stock price was $17.50 per share. When she left the company in 2002, the stock price was at $36.47 per share and the number of stores had grown from just over 100 stores to just over 1,000. Her kindness and values made her highly regarded and respected companywide. She currently serves on the company’s Board of Directors.

“Rosalie is a wonderful ambassador for Drury. … She has lived the kind of life that our students and alumni can hold up as an example, and seek to emulate.” – Drury President Dr. Tim Cloyd

Wooten has been dedicated to a number of philanthropic endeavors. She serves on many boards, including Ozarks Greenways, CASA Advisory Board, Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks Advisory Board, and Missouri Council for the Arts Board, and she supports several charities. Her passion and caring spirit take her involvement far beyond expectations.

The list of her charitable causes includes, but is not limited to, Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks, CASA, Catholic Charities, Child Advocacy Center, Boys & Girls Club, Boys & Girls Town, Isabel’s House, Good Samaritan Boys Ranch, Harmony House, MSU Foundation (including Juanita K. Hammons Hall), Springfield Little Theater, Ozarks Food Harvest, Ozark Greenways, Springfield Regional Arts (Opera, Ballet, Orchestra, Symphony), The Moxie Theater, Kauffman Performing Arts Center in Kansas City, Lutheran Family Services, and the Humane Society of Southwest Missouri.

Wooten has most recently authored a children’s book about her nomadic canine friend, Tippy. She has two children, six grandchildren and continues to reside in Springfield.

Of course, one of her main focuses is education by giving back to her Alma Mater, Drury University.

“Rosalie is a wonderful ambassador for Drury,” says President Dr. Tim Cloyd. “With her calling as a teacher, her success as a business executive, her generosity as a philanthropist and her support for the arts, she has lived the kind of life that our students and alumni can hold up as an example, and seek to emulate.”


Drury confers nearly 500 degrees conferred at spring commencements

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 13, 2017 — Drury University awarded degrees to 466 graduates at its spring commencement ceremonies Friday and Saturday. There were 282 degrees conferred during the ceremony for the College of Continuing Professional Studies and the College of Graduate Studies on Friday evening, and 215 degrees conferred during the traditional residential college ceremony on Saturday. Some students earned multiple degrees.


An honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters also was awarded to Rosalie O’Reilly Wooten on Saturday. Wooten, a Springfield native, was honored as a model business woman and philanthropist. After graduating from Drury, she taught high school English for 13 years. She spent most of her career as an Executive Vice President at her family business, O’Reilly Automotive, from 1993 to 2002, where she managed telecommunications, risk management and human resources.


Rosalie O’Reilly Wooten

Wooten serves on many boards, including a decade on the Drury Board of Trustees. During that time she has served on many committees and was a large influence in the conception of the O’Reilly Family Event Center. She has two children and six grandchildren and continues to reside in Springfield.

Jack Prim addressed the traditional undergraduates at today’s ceremony, and urged them to measure their success in life by their own definition of the term. Prim is the chairman of Jack Henry & Associates, the Monett-based company that is a leading provider of software for the financial services industry.

“Success has to be what you define it as, not what your classmates or friends define it as,” he said.

He also told the graduates that lifelong success means lifelong learning. He told them a Drury education prepared them well for further education, whether that means formal education, reading or asking the CEO of the company for advice.

“Your education doesn’t stop when you walk about of here today,” he said. “I would encourage you to never stop learning.”

Jack Prim

Jack Prim

Bill Prince addressed the graduates on Friday evening, advising them to live by the “Three Be’s” – be involved in your community, be busy with work you are passionate about, and be kind to everyone you meet.

Bill Prince

Bill Prince

Prince, who is the administrator of the Greene County juvenile and family court system and an adjunct instructor for Drury, stressed that kindness was perhaps the most important of the three. Today’s world is in need of much more of it, he said.

“We live in a time when people are not nice to one another; we live in a time when people are very divided,” Prince said. “Do not marginalize people. Recognize their worth and the fact that they, too, are trying to live for something better to come.”


Drury to dedicate new garden plaza honoring its past presidents

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 9, 2017 — Drury University will dedicate the new Presidents’ Garden during a ceremony from 11:30 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, May 10.


Established by the Board of Trustees and led by Chairman Lyle Reed, the garden pays tribute to Drury’s past 17 presidents as well as current president, Dr. Timothy Cloyd. It features limestone matching that used in the construction of Stone Chapel, as well as bronze plaques containing pictures of each president along with their years of service. The garden plaza is located just north of Stone Chapel.

Reed will deliver remarks about the significance of the garden. Other speakers include Walt George, a Drury trustee and great-grandson of Drury’s fifth president, Dr. Joseph Henry George, and Judy Thompson, vice president for stewardship and principal gifts, who served Drury for 30 years and has known 11 of Drury’s 18 presidents. Honored guests will include several past presidents who will be in attendance.


Drury University to dedicate new CCPS campus in Lebanon on May 18

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 8, 2017 Drury University’s College of Continuing Professional Studies will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony and open house for its new campus location in Lebanon at 10 a.m., Thursday, May 18. Drury President Dr. Tim Cloyd will address attendees, and leaders from the Lebanon community will help President Cloyd and Drury officials cut the ribbon.

The classroom location at 122 E. Commercial Street is a new permanent home for Drury classes in the region and will allow Drury to offer summer classes in Lebanon for the first time in several years. The space houses a new computer lab and student lounge. It will also be home to the Drury Law Enforcement Academy’s second location, starting in June. This is the first time law enforcement courses will be offered by Drury in the Lebanon area.

The site may be new, but Drury’s commitment to the Lebanon area dates back more than 30 years. Drury began offering classes in Lebanon in 1986. The campus offers students the ability to fully complete associates degrees on site, and offers classes toward a bachelor’s degree in a number of fields. Lebanon is one of nine CCPS branch campuses across southwest Missouri.

“We are excited for this expansion in Lebanon and the opportunities it presents,” says Jana Neiss, dean of the College of Continuing Professional Studies. “Over the years, Drury has received steady support from the Lebanon community and we look forward to continuing that partnership.”

Summer classes begin Monday, June 5. For more information about enrolling in CCPS classes, call (417) 873-7373, email ccps@drury.edu or visit www.drury.edu/ccps. For information about the Law Enforcement Academy, contact Tony Bowers at (417) 873-7542, email tbowers@drury.edu or visit www.drury.edu/law-enforcement.


Students present vision for Hazelwood Cemetery ahead of 150th anniversary

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 5, 2017 — A team of Drury architecture students is helping the City of Springfield envision the future of the largest municipally owned cemetery in the state of Missouri.

Hazelwood Cemetery will celebrate its 150th anniversary in October. As part of the city’s celebration of this event, the Springfield Public Works Department asked the Center for Community Studies at Drury’s Hammons School of Architecture to assist in a community-based visioning process to identify a long-term master plan for the cemetery.

The public is invited to a meeting at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, May 9, at the Schweitzer Brentwood Branch Library to hear recommendations that have resulted from a community input process.

A group of eight third-year architecture students have spent the past several months working closely with city staff and a citizen advisory committee to assess current conditions and challenges, research cultural practices and trends in the funeral industry, and identify the community’s wants and needs. A few of the recommendations that will be discussed are: consideration of a new main entry off Sunset Street, a new cemetery office/maintenance complex, a “Celebration of Life Center,” development of columbarium and sprinkle-gardens, and establishment of a commemorative monument for the cemetery’s 150th anniversary.

The Drury team will use presentation boards, videos, and models to help illustrate these recommendations. The architecture students were supervised by Professor Jay Garrott, director of the Center for Community Studies, with the assistance of Jeff Barber, environmental design state specialist with the University of Missouri-Extension.

The citizen advisory committee and city staff will continue to oversee development of the plan for throughout the summer with the intent of presenting the final vision at the October celebration of the cemetery’s 150th anniversary.


Media Contact: Jay Garrott, Professor of Architecture & Director of the Center for Community Studies: (417) 873-7371 or jgarrott@drury.edu.

Cybersecurity workshop for small businesses to be held Thursday at Drury

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 2, 2017 — Drury professor Dr. Shannon McMurtrey and several of his graduate-level students in the Breech School of Business will offer a free workshop on “Cybersecurity Best Practices for Small Businesses” from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 4, in Room 200 in the Breech building.

Information security is a top priority for anyone who owns or manages a business. The session will cover steps today’s small business leaders can take to protect their operations and their customers’ data. Dr. McMurtrey, an award-winning cybersecurity expert, will facilitate the session. There will be time for Q&A at the end, and light refreshments will be provided.

“One of the most pressing concerns for many small businesses owners today is protecting their systems and data from hackers,” McMurtrey says. “Graduate students in the Drury Cybersecurity Leadership program will share their research in areas important to small businesses, including information security policy, social engineering attack vectors, and cyber-warfare.”

For more information or to RSVP for the event, call (417) 873-7508.

About the Cybersecurity Leadership Certificate program

Today’s employers are seeking leaders who understand how to protect, detect, defend, and respond to cybersecurity attacks. That is why Drury now offers a graduate-level certificate in cybersecurity leadership. The new Cybersecurity Leadership coursework can be completed in one year and is designed to serve students of all backgrounds. In addition to gaining knowledge of the fundamentals of information security, students also acquire a strong foundation in risk and risk management.

For more information, visit: www.drury.edu/cybersecurity.


Media Contact: Dr. Shannon McMurtrey, Assistant Professor of Management Information Systems: (417) 873-7242 or smcmurtrey@drury.edu.

Jack Prim & Bill Prince to address Drury spring graduates

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 2, 2017 — Jack Henry & Associates Executive Chairman Jack Prim and Greene County Family Court Administrator Bill Prince will deliver the keynote addresses to graduates at Drury University’s two commencement ceremonies next week.

Bill Prince will speak at the ceremony for the College of Continuing Professional Studies and the College of Graduate Studies at 6:30 p.m., Friday, May 12. Jack Prim will address graduates of Drury’s traditional residential college at 11 a.m., Saturday, May 13. Both events will be held at the O’Reilly Family Event Center.


Jack Prim became executive chairman for Jack Henry & Associates in 2016. The Monett-based company is a leading provider of computer systems and electronic payment solutions for the financial services industry. Prim began his career in the financial industry in 1977 as a sales representative and joined Jack Henry in 1995. He was appointed chief operating officer in 2001, where he focused the company’s operations on customer satisfaction and consistent growth. He was named president in 2003, CEO in 2004, and chairman of the board in 2012. Prim holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and earned his master’s degree in business administration from Queens University. He serves on the boards of CoxHealth in Springfield and the YMCA in Monett, where he lives.



Bill Prince has been the family court administrator and chief juvenile officer for Greene County since August 2015. He is responsible for overseeing the division’s day-to-day operations and long-range strategy, as well as coordinating with judges, attorneys, and outside agencies to meet the community’s juvenile and family justice needs. Prior to assuming the administrator role, Prince served as senior legal counsel for 17 years, addressing matters related to abuse and neglect, parental rights, delinquency, and juvenile offenses in the courtroom. Prince is an adjunct instructor for Drury’s Breech School of Business, teaching courses in corporate policy and responsibility, international business and society, and law. He is also an instructor with Drury’s Law Enforcement Academy. Prince holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and political science from the University of Denver, and a J.D. from the University of Missouri. He serves on the Missouri Supreme Court Commission on Combatting Human Trafficking, is a past president of the board for Habitat for Humanity of Springfield, and is a past fellow with the American Academy of Adoption Attorneys.


Annual 531 Challenge offers an opportunity to invest in Drury students

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 26, 2017 — Drury University alumni and friends have an opportunity to make their support for tomorrow’s leaders go even further during the annual 531 Challenge during the month of May.

Now in its fourth year, the 531 Challenge is an intense month of fundraising before the end of the fiscal year on May 31. All donations made to Drury during May count toward the 531 Challenge, which does not have a specific dollar goal but rather seeks to boost participation amongst donors. Donations support the Annual Drury Experience Fund, which provides money for student scholarships and financial aid.

The 531 Challenge once again features a generous matching gift, this time from Walter and Susan George and the George Family Foundation. Susan is a 1980 Drury graduate. Walter earned a Drury degree in 1979 and is a member of Drury’s Board of Trustees. The Foundation will make a gift of $50,000 if at least 531 people give, regardless of the amount, during the Challenge.

“We feel like this challenge is a great way for all Drury alumni to participate in the future of the university, and to invest in the transformational power of a Drury degree,” Walter and Susan George say. “It affords all of us who have benefited from a Drury education an opportunity to lead by example, and to make the future just that much brighter for the students who will be tomorrow’s leaders and innovators.”


For more information about giving, go to https://alumni.drury.edu/531Challenge or call the Office of University Advancement at (417) 873-7353.


Media Contact: Andrea Battaglia – Director, Annual Fund & Alumni Relations: (417) 873-7353 or abattaglia@drury.edu.