Two honored at 7th annual Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., March 21, 2015 — Two outstanding local business owners were recognized at the Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium, held earlier today at Drury University.

Dianna Devore, owner of structural steel manufacturing firm Design Fabrication Inc., was named Woman Entrepreneur of the Year.  Home furnishing and interior design store Ellecor, owned by Haden Long, was named Woman-Owned Startup of the Year.

Devore purchased Design Fabrication Inc. from its retiring owners in 2010, and she proceeded to double gross sales in the wake of difficult times for the construction industry following the Great Recession. Haden opened Ellecor in March 2014 and sought to separate herself from the competition by offering unique, functional inventory that isn’t often seen in other stores.

This is the second year that the Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium has honored a Woman Entrepreneur and a Woman-Owned Startup of the Year. The annual WES event is sponsored by Drury’s Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship. The event provides women entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn about the various aspects of owning a business, network with other entrepreneurs and visit with a wide range of exhibitors.


Music professor wins statewide award for original composition

Dr. Carlyle Sharpe is both a professor and practitioner of music composition. His students have long recognized what he brings to the table as a teacher, and his peers have often recognized his talents as a composer – including a recent statewide nod.

Sharpe, professor of music composition and theory, was this summer honored with the Opus Award from the Missouri Choral Directors Association for his original composition, “Psalm 8.”

The award is presented annually to a Missouri composer with the most outstanding choral composition, nominated and voted on by members of the Missouri Music Educators Association (MMEA). Sharpe’s piece was written in honor of the 75th Anniversary Convention of MMEA, and was performed by the Boys Choir of Springfield under the direction of Mark Lawley, director of music education at Drury.

Sharpe has numerous awards in choral, solo, orchestral and combination pieces, but his favorite part of composing is the creative process behind it.

“The award is icing on the cake, but the cake is the process of composing and the rehearsal of it,” he says. “You have it in your head a certain way — so what’s magical about it is when it lines up the way you envisioned it and the music comes to life.”

Carlyle Sharpe

A working composer, Sharpe teaches composition lessons, music theory and ear training courses at Drury, while he composes original music at home.

“I love teaching college students because its keeps you young and engaged,” Sharpe says. “I use the principles and theories I teach in my own work, and I think students appreciate that the person educating them is also practicing those techniques outside of the classroom.”

Every piece he composes comes with its own challenges, but Sharpe values both the Drury and Springfield communities for their continuous support and appreciation of the arts. Springfield and Drury ensembles have performed 30 of Sharpe’s works.

Dr. Allin Sorenson, professor of music and director of Drury Singers says, “There’s incredible value in having the composer directly work with the performers because he is able to provide insight into the music that is usually unavailable to musicians.”

Now entering his 15th year at Drury, Sharpe has seen the music department grow from just 17 music majors to about 100 music majors and minors — a record high.

“Seeing all the exciting potential at Drury and watching the potential come to fruition is incredible,” Sharpe says. “We are still relatively small, but we’re doing things on a big scale. We may be small, but we don’t think small.”


Story by Kaleigh Jurgensmeyer, English and Writing major at Drury. A version of this story first appeared in the Springfield News-Leader.

Area Businesswomen Honored at Annual Entrepreneurship Event

Two outstanding women business owners were honored today at the 6th Annual Women in Entrepreneurship Symposium. Winners were announced the conference’s closing luncheon.

Hurts Donut Co., co-owned by Kas Clegg, was chosen as the Woman-Owned Start-Up of the Year. Clegg co-owns the business with her husband, Tim. Located at 301 Park Central West, the shop opened in November and builds on recent boutique pastry trends.

Other nominees included: Fleur (Lisa Clary & Kim Wood); Behavioral Learning Center, LLC (Ginger Crabtree); School of Rock (Jennifer Jester); and Bodacious Cases, LLC (Arianna Russell).

Jennifer Wilson, founder and principle architect at nForm Architecture, was chosen Woman Entrepreneur of the Year. Exceptional client service and environmentally responsible design are the cornerstones of the firm, which opened in 2007 and is located in downtown Springfield. Jennifer is a native of Springfield. She obtained her architecture degree from the University of Arkansas. She is licensed in Missouri and is a LEED-AP.

Other nominees included: Deborah Bellotti & Candice Carson (The Buzz restaurant) and Jennifer Choi (Rose Diamonds Custom Design & Repair).

To qualify for an award, a woman must own at least 50 percent of a business and operate within 30 miles of Springfield. The Woman Entrepreneur of the Year nominees must have been in business for at least five years, and the Woman-Owned Start-Up of the Year nominees should have been in business for less than two years.

“We’re thrilled to highlight all of our nominees and show that women in our area have a strong and successful entrepreneurial spirit,” said Dr. Kelley Still, director of Drury’s Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship, or EJC.

The EJC hosts WES in order to provide women entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn about the various aspects of owning a business, network with other entrepreneurs and visit with a wide range of exhibitors. This year more than 150 people attended the half-day symposium.

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

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., August 6, 2013 —The Princeton Review has named Drury University one the best colleges in the Midwest in its website feature “2014 Best Colleges Region by Region.” Drury is one of 155 institutions named to the Princeton Review’s “Best in the Midwest” section.

In the profile on Drury University at Princeton Review’s website, Drury students offered the following descriptions:

  • “The global awareness aspect is one of the greatest strengths of the school.”
  • “My professors truly care about their students: they know each of us by name.”
  • “I fell in love with the school immediately. It is small and intimate, but still has things to do.”

The 155 colleges named to the “Best in the Midwest” section come from 12 states: Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Collectively, the 643 colleges named “regional bests” constitute about 25 percent of the nation’s 2,500 four-year colleges

The Princeton Review is an education services company known for its test-prep courses, tutoring, books and other student resources. The Princeton Review is not affiliated with Princeton University.


Drury’s Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium to honor top female entrepreneurs

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Nov. 27, 2012 — Drury University’s Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship is looking to recognize the top female entrepreneurs in the region. The winners of these inaugural awards will be honored at the annual Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium (WES) to be held at Drury’s Trustee Science Center on Saturday, Feb. 2. This is the first year the WES event has given awards to top female entrepreneurs.

Awards will be given in the following categories:

  • Woman Entrepreneur of the Year
  • Woman Start-Up of the Year

In order to qualify for an award, a woman must own at least 51 percent of a business and operate within 30 miles of Springfield. The Woman Entrepreneur of the Year nominees must have been in business for at least five years, and the Woman Start-Up of the Year nominees should be in business for less than two years.

Nominees for these awards can be sent to by December 19, 2012. Nominees will be sent a full application form, which is due by January 18, 2013. An independent panel of judges will select the winners. Award winners will receive a plaque, be honored at the annual WES event and have their stories posted on Drury’s website.

The fifth annual Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium (WES) will take place on Drury’s campus on Saturday, February 2. This event provides women entrepreneurs the opportunity to learn about the various aspects of owning a business, network with other entrepreneurs and visit with exhibitors ranging from accountants and bankers to direct sales opportunities. The event is just $25, which includes breakfast and lunch. Registration will begin on December 17 at


Drury students’ posters are designed to decrease underage drinking

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 30, 2012 — Drury University students took first and second place in the Community Partnership of the Ozarks Underage Drinking Task Force (UDTF) Higher Education Committee Annual Poster Contest. Drury sophomore design arts major Carlie Townsend’s poster was selected as the top overall entry. Nathan Harrison, a Drury fifth year senior majoring in architecture, was second. Both of the winning posters were designed in Dudley Murphy’s visual communications course.

Carlie Townsend's winning poster

Townsend and Harrison’s posters, along with the third place poster from Evangel University student Andrew Grumke, will be displayed throughout Springfield in stores, coffee shops, pools and parks to spread awareness about the dangers of underage drinking and the benefits of not drinking alcohol.

According to the Community Partnership, “Each year, this contest is held to engage college students to help increase awareness among their peers about underage and risky drinking behaviors and related consequences.” Data from the 2010 Missouri College Behavioral Health Survey is incorporated into each poster, such as, “The higher the GPA, the lower the average drinks per week,” or “70 percent of college students choose to designate a sober driver before they go out.”

Nathan Harrison's 2nd place poster

Media Contact:
Ed Derr, Director of Counseling, Office: (417) 873-7357, E-mail:


Drury communication students to present research at regional conference

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Feb. 8, 2012 — Nine Drury communication majors have been selected to present their research at the 2012 Central States Communication Association (CSCA) President’s Undergraduate Honors Research Conference. The conference will be held in Cleveland, Ohio on March 30-31.

Students will be presenting their research in panels and poster sessions before an audience of both their peers and graduate faculty from other institutions. Additionally, by participating in the research conference, students will be allotted time to find out more about the available opportunities in graduate study, while also networking with some of the leading communication scholars in the central states region.

Research submitted to the conference was conducted in Ethics of Communication, Interpersonal Communication Theory, Mass Media and Society and Foundations of Communication Theory courses. This is the first time at Drury that this many different communication courses have produced student CSCA research.

“I applaud these students for their accomplishments,” said Dr. Regina Waters, chair of the

Dr. Regina Waters

communication department. “They produced this level of scholarly work as sophomores and juniors.”

Research Panel Presentations

Jackie Cantrell and Allyson Strickland
Sex, Babies and Housework: Attributions of Sexist Joking in Cross-Sex Friendships

Alyssa Baker, Elizabeth Barmeier, and Christa Scott
The Maverick, the Old Man, the Changer and the Obnoxious One: The Framing of the 2008 Party Candidates on “Saturday Night Live

Jackie Cantrell
Perceptions and Crisis: Media Framing in the 2011 Revolt in Egypt

Poster Session Presentations

Michelle Everett, Holly Plunkett, Molly Riddle, and Cecily Robertson
It’s Not Like I’m Drunk: The Use of Pathos in Anti-Drunk Driving Campaigns

Allyson Strickland
“Outsmart Mother Nature”: An Examination of Tampax Advertising Using Passing Theory

Christa Scott
Ageism in Television Programming: An Examination of TV Land’s “Hot in Cleveland”

According to its website, the mission of the Central States Communication Association is to unite and educate people with both an affinity to the central region of the United States and a scholarly interest in all areas of communication for promotion of their mutual goals and advancement of their field.

Media Contact: Dr. Regina Waters, Chair & Associate Professor, Communication, Office: (417) 873-7251, E-mail:


Drury professor’s Civil War book earns prestigious award

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 2, 2011 — Dr. Randall Fuller, Professor of English and the Director of the Honors Program, received the Christian Gauss Award for his book, From Battlefield’s Rising: How the Civil War Transformed American Literature. This award is given to books that show exceptional literary scholarship and criticism. Fuller was presented with the award Friday, Dec. 2 at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.

The Christian Gauss Award is part of the Phi Beta Kappa Book Awards. Established in 1950, the Christian Gauss Award was created in honor of a former Phi Beta Kappa president, a distinguished scholar at Princeton University.

“I am enormously honored, in large part because the past winners comprise the hall of fame for literary criticism. M. H. Abrams, Harold Bloom, Wayne Booth, Marjorie Garber, and others: these are the people who inspired me when I was in graduate school. It is truly humbling to be included in that crowd,” said Fuller.

Dr. Randy Fuller

In addition to his book, Fuller has been published in many journals, such as: American Literature, American Literary History, and Early American Literature. He is also the author of Emerson’s Ghosts: Literature, Politics, and the Marketing of Americanists.

Media Contact: Randall Fuller, Professor, English & Director of the Honors Program, Office: (417) 873-7220, E-mail:


Springfield Business Journal honors Drury University

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Nov. 10, 2011 — Springfield Business Journal magazine honored Drury University as a Choice Employer at a reception on Thursday, Nov. 10. Drury finished third in the category of employers with more than 301 employees behind Kraft Foods and CoxHealth.

Springfield Business Journal rates companies in the areas of: incentives, family friendly, people development and corporate culture.


Drury senior to present at Missouri Sociological Association conference

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Oct. 7, 2011 — Drury senior, Emily Brown, is the winner of the 2011 Alvin Gouldner Undergraduate Student Paper Competition.  As the winner of the award, Brown will present a paper at the annual conference of the Missouri Sociological Association (MSA) on Oct. 14 in Lake Ozark, Mo.

Brown, a sociology major, and a native of Nixa, Mo., will present a paper titled Identifying the Links Between Anonymity and Prosocial Behavior.  The paper examines the relationship between anonymity and a person’s willingness to help someone else.  Brown discovered that people were willing to donate significantly more money when they were given no anonymity, as opposed to complete anonymity.  Upon graduating in December, Brown hopes to continue her research in graduate school.

Emily Brown

In addition to being given the opportunity to present her research, Brown will also receive a $100 prize from MSA.

Media Contact: Dr. Robin Miller, Associate Professor, Sociology, Office: (417) 873-7891, E-mail: