commencement

Drury Winter Commencement cancelled due to winter weather alert

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 13, 2013 – Due to a severe winter weather alert, the 2014 Drury University Winter Commencement at the O’Reilly Family Event Center, scheduled for 10:00 AM on Saturday, December 14, 2013 has been rescheduled for a later date.  All graduates and their families will be notified of alternate arrangements and timing as soon as they are finalized.  We apologize for any inconveniences this may have created and we wish everyone a safe and happy Holiday Season.

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Supreme Court of Missouri Chief Justice to speak at Drury’s December commencement ceremony

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 5, 2013 – Supreme Court of Missouri Chief Justice Mary R. Russell will serve as the keynote speaker for Drury University’s December commencement to be held Saturday, December 14 at 10 a.m. in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. During the commencement, 336 students will receive undergraduate degrees and 71 will receive master’s degrees.

Serving as chief justice since July, Russell was appointed to the Supreme Court of Missouri in 2004. She previously served on the Missouri Court of Appeals, Eastern District, and served as its chief judge from July 1999 through June2000. Prior to that, she was engaged in the private practice of law in Hannibal, Missouri. She is a member of The Missouri Bar, the American Bar Association, and numerous local and county bar organizations throughout thestate. Russell is a past recipient of the Women’s Justice Award from the St. Louis Daily Record, was named Citizen of the Year in Kirksville, Missouri, in 2002 and was named Woman of the Year by the Women Lawyers Association of St. Louis in 2003.

“Drury University is very pleased to host Chief Justice Russell at the 2013 WinterCommencement,” says Dr. David Manuel, Drury president. “Our graduates will have a wonderful opportunity to hear from one of the great leaders of Missouri.  She epitomizes the qualities that we hope all Drury graduates will emulate – outstanding professional contributions, abiding commitment to her family and faith, and a singular dedication to her community.”

A seventh-generation Missourian, Russell was one of five children raised on a dairy farm in Ralls County, Missouri. The valedictorian of her high school graduating class in Hannibal, Russell earned bachelor’s degrees, summa cum laude, in communications and print media in 1980 fromTruman State University. She earned her law degree in 1983 from the University of Missouri-Columbia, where she was on the dean’s list.

Media: Members of the news media are invited to photograph or videotape the graduation. In addition, Chief Justice Russell will be available for interviews following the commencement ceremony given advance notice.

Contacts:

Day School: John Taylor, (417) 873-6356, jtaylor3@drury.edu

CCPS: Salia Manis, (417) 873-7543, smanis@drury.edu

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A Drury speaker gives students one last test at graduation

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 18, 2013 —Drury University awarded degrees to 611 students at spring commencement ceremonies at the O’Reilly Family Event Center today, Saturday, May 18.

49 earned graduate degrees, 318 were given undergraduate degrees from the College of Continuing Professional Studies (CCPS) and 244 traditional Day School students received degrees.

John Beuerlein (center) shakes hands with Drury President Todd Parnell as Dr. Charles Taylor, Dean of the College, adjusts Beuerlein's doctoral hood.

Drury honored long-time trustee John Beuerlein ’75 with an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters at the Day School commencement ceremony. The general partner with investment firm Edward Jones is an emeritus trustee. Beuerlein served on the Drury Board of Trustees for nearly 20 years and is a former board chairman.

Beuerlein surprised the Day School graduates with envelopes filled with cash under each graduate’s seat. The total amount of money represented Beuerlein’s annual donation to Drury, and the envelopes contained anywhere from $10-to-$1,000. Beuerlein told the graduates that they could not open the envelopes and, after the ceremony, each graduate would go through a booth where they could either secretly keep the money or place it in a box as a donation to Drury. Beuerlein called this a final test for the graduates, a test of character.

“I believe Drury grads are people of character, and I believe that Drury grads do the right thing and I believe Drury grads do the right thing even when nobody’s watching,” Beuerlein told the graduates. “Knowing that there just might be $1,000 in that envelope is a tough choice, but do you want the lesson you take from today to be that you traded away your character for a measly 10 bucks. You are a Drury grad, make your life a life of significance.”

Missouri State Senator Bob Dixon was the commencement speaker for the CCPS and graduate students. Dixon earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Drury.

Senator Bob Dixon

“Life is all about choices. Today’s choice is whether your life will be about you or about others. I’m encouraging you to choose wisely,” Dixon said. “The events of this day are the beginning of the rest of your journey. Go forth and serve and go forth and shape the world.”

This was the final commencement for Drury President Todd Parnell. Parnell will retire on May 31. The 1969 Drury graduate is the only Drury president who is also a Drury alumnus. Dr. David Manuel will become Drury’s 17th president on June 1, 2013.

It was also the final commencement for Drury Registrar Gale Boutwell. Boutwell will retire from Drury on May 31 and has overseen 87 commencement ceremonies. Drury honored Boutwell with an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters at the December 2012 commencement.

2013 Drury commencement

Media contact: Mark Miller, Associate Director of Marketing and Communications, Office: (417) 873-7390, Mobile: (417) 839-2886, E-mail: markmiller@drury.edu.

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Drury to graduate hundreds and honor a long-time trustee on May 18

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 10, 2013Drury University will award degrees to nearly 600 students at spring commencement ceremonies at the O’Reilly Family Event Center on Saturday, May 18.

49 graduate students will join 301 undergraduates in the College of Continuing Professional Studies (CCPS) and College of Graduate Studies commencement at noon. The Day School will confer degrees to 249 undergraduates at 2:30 p.m.

John Beuerlein

Drury will honor long-time trustee John Beuerlein ’75 with an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters at the Day School commencement ceremony. Beuerlein is a general partner with investment company Edward Jones. He served on the Drury Board of Trustees from 1992-2011, he was Board Chairman for four years from 2007-2011, and he is currently an emeritus trustee at Drury. He will give the commencement address to the Day School graduates.

“John’s leadership during a time of presidential transition at Drury and during a time of economic uncertainty in the country was invaluable,” said Drury President Todd Parnell. “Now, as an emeritus trustee, John’s experience and perspective are steadying influences for the board and Drury’s administration.”

Besides his work on the board of trustees, Beuerlein and his wife Crystal Tinlin ’75 have been generous donors to Drury. The Beuerleins, together with Edward Jones, made the naming gift for Drury’s Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship as well as the Edward Jones Scholarships for Minority Students. The Beuerleins have also donated to and visited the Hem Sheela Model School in India, which was founded by Drury Professors Rabindra and Protima Roy.

In 2001, Beuerlein received Drury’s Distinguished Alumni Award, and, in 2008, Beuerlein was inducted into the Breech School of Business Hall of Fame.

Senator Bob Dixon

Missouri State Senator Bob Dixon will address the CCPS and graduate students in the noon commencement ceremony. Senator Dixon was first elected to the Missouri House of Representatives in 2002. In 2010, he was elected to the Senate. Dixon is a two-time Drury graduate, having earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Drury University.

“Senator Dixon brings a unique perspective as a graduation speaker,” said Aaron Jones, interim dean of the College of Continuing Professional Studies. “He’s had a lifetime of work in the private sector and a decade of experience serving the people of the State of Missouri. Plus, he’s a Drury graduate. I look forward to hearing his speech.”

Media contact: Mark Miller, Associate Director of Marketing and Communications, Office: (417) 873-7390, Mobile: (417) 839-2886, E-mail: markmiller@drury.edu

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Drury honors Registrar Gale Boutwell with an honorary degree at Winter Commencement

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 15, 2012 — Gale Boutwell has worked at Drury University for more than four decades. Today, Drury honored her with an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters at commencement in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. The degree was a surprise to Boutwell who has worked at Drury for 41 years; she has been the registrar since 1978.

Drury also conferred degrees to 410 students during its Winter Commencement. 356 students received undergraduate degrees and 54 earned master’s degrees.

Gale Boutwell (left) smiles as Dr. Charles Taylor reads the proclamation for Boutwell's honorary degree.

Boutwell has overseen 86 commencement ceremonies, including today’s, during that time nearly 25,000 men and women have transitioned from student to Drury alumnus. Drury President Todd Parnell said of Boutwell, “She makes things happen that can’t, all with a smile and in the personal interests of students, whatever their ages, backgrounds or dreams. Gale believes most fundamentally in student dreams.” Parnell and Boutwell both graduated from Drury in 1969.

“Today is so special to me. I am so gratified. I know what goes into the conferring of these honorary degrees. Faculty, trustees, thank you,” Boutwell said.

Jim Anderson, the president of the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce was the graduation speaker. Anderson received an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Drury in 2002, and his daughter Rebecca was one of today’s graduates.

Jim Anderson, Drury graduation speaker

“You have two choices in life, you can dissolve into the mainstream or you can be distinct. To be distinct, you must be different. To be different, you must be and strive to be what no one else but you can be,” Anderson told the graduates. “Graduation may be the end of time for you at Drury University, but you’re about to begin a new chapter. Graduation is a new beginning. The more you work to improve the lives of others, the more you will enjoy life.”

Drury’s president-elect Dr. David Manuel and his wife Betty Coe attended the commencement ceremony. Manuel will take office as Drury’s 17th president on June 1, 2013.

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Jim Anderson to keynote Drury’s Winter Commencement on Dec. 15

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 3, 2012 — Drury University will confer degrees to 410 students during its Winter Commencement at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 15, in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. 357 students will receive undergraduate degrees and 53 will get master’s degrees.

Jim Anderson

Jim Anderson, the president of the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce is the graduation speaker. Anderson received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Drury in 2002, and his daughter Rebecca is graduating on Dec. 15.

“I know of no one who has had a broader impact on the economic development of our region than Jim Anderson. His integrity, work ethic, and sincere care for our community are inspirational to all,” said Todd Parnell, Drury president and a former chairman of the board of the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce. “Jim’s been a good friend to Drury and I know he’ll send our graduates off with an inspirational message.”

Before joining the Springfield Chamber in 1988, Anderson served as president of the Jefferson City, Missouri Area Chamber of Commerce for nine years. Prior to that, he served as a school administrator and schoolteacher in Jefferson City Public Schools.

Besides his professional work, Anderson is active in the Springfield community. He served as chairman of the United Way of the Ozarks and president of the Urban Districts Alliance. A member of the Springfield Rotary Club, he is a past chairman of the Community Relations Board for the U. S. Medical Center for Federal Prisoners.

In 2005, the Chamber of Commerce honored Anderson with its Springfieldian award.

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Drury confers more than 600 degrees at spring graduation

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 12, 2012 —Drury University conferred degrees to more than 600 students today in spring graduation ceremonies at the O’Reilly Family Event Center.

357 undergraduates joined 57 graduate students in the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies (CGCS) commencement at noon. 255 students in the traditional Day School received their bachelor’s degrees later in the afternoon.

A packed house in the O'Reilly Family Event Center

The president of The New American Colleges and Universities (NACU), Dr. Nancy Hensel, was the commencement speaker for both graduations. NACU is a consortium of 19 independent colleges and universities that blend liberal learning, professional studies and civic engagement. Prior to accepting the post at NACU, Hensel served as chief executive officer of the Council on Undergraduate Research in Washington D.C. for seven years.

Drury Class Flag 2012

“As you pursue success in your career, I hope you will also seek a balance between your work and your personal life,” said Dr. Hensel. “You are our social hope for the future, and I know that you are capable of meeting that responsibility.  My very best wishes to you for your success and happiness in your future.”

Media contact: Mark Miller, Associate Director of Marketing and Communication, Office: (417) 873-7390, Mobile: (417) 839-2886, E-mail: markmiller@drury.edu

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Drury’s spring graduation ceremonies are Saturday, May 12

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 7, 2012 —Drury University’s spring commencement ceremonies will be held on Saturday, May 12 in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. The ceremony for the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies (CGCS) is at noon with the traditional Day School graduation to follow at 2:30 p.m.

57 graduate students will join 357 undergraduates in the CGCS graduation. The Day School will confer degrees to 255 undergraduates.

Dr. Nancy Hensel

The president of The New American Colleges and Universities (NACU), Dr. Nancy Hensel, is the commencement speaker for both graduations.

Dr. Hensel became the first president of The New American Colleges and Universities on November 15, 2011. NACU is a consortium of 19 independent colleges and universities that blend liberal learning, professional studies and civic engagement. Prior to accepting the post at NACU, Hensel served as chief executive officer of the Council on Undergraduate Research in Washington D.C. for seven years.

Besides running those two national organizations, Dr. Hensel has also served as the president of the University of Maine at Presque Isle, held the positions of provost and vice president of academic affairs at the University of Maine at Farmington, and was the department chair and professor of education at the University of Redlands in California.

“Dr. Hensel has a remarkable breadth of experience in American higher education. As a former faculty member, university president, head of the Council for Undergraduate Research and now, as President of the New American Colleges, she has been at the forefront of the national movement toward deeper and more engaged student learning practices. In that sense, she mirrors Drury’s most fundamental commitments, making her the ideal person to address our graduates,” said Dr. Charles Taylor, vice president for academic affairs at Drury.

Hensel holds a doctorate degree in early childhood education from the University of Georgia, masters’ degrees in theater and early childhood education from San Francisco State University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in theater also from San Francisco State.

Media: You are welcome to videotape or photograph either graduation ceremony.

Graduation contacts:

For the College of Graduate and Continuing Studies:
Courtney Allen, (417) 873-7872, callen@drury.edu

For the traditional Day School:
Cindy Jones, (417) 873-7466, cjones@drury.edu

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Drury confers degree to 393 graduates at Winter Commencement

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 17, 2011 — Drury University conferred degrees to 393 students during Winter Commencement today, Saturday, Dec. 17 in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. 345 students received undergraduate degrees and 48 earned master’s degrees.

President of the Community Foundation of the Ozarks (CFO), Brian Fogle, was the graduation speaker. Fogle, who was named the 2010 Springfieldian by the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce, received the honorary degree Doctor of Humane Letters at the ceremony.

Drury's Jann Holland (right) reads the proclamation honoring Brian Fogle with an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters.

Drury's Jann Holland (right) reads the proclamation honoring Brian Fogle with an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters.

“I challenge you today to live deliberately,” Fogle told the graduates. “Success comes not from how many friends you’ve accumulated on Facebook, but how you respond to their hopes, their dreams and their pain. Life, real life, comes not from the digital persona or an avatar, but from the joy of deep connections. Like Thoreau, live a life knowing that you lived, truly lived. Go forth today and love, live and hug often.”

Fogle is a native of Aurora, Mo., and, prior to joining CFO in 2008, Fogle had a long career in banking and higher education. When he received the Springfieldian award, the Chamber of Commerce noted Fogle’s long history in giving back to the community. Highlighted was Fogle’s work as the founder of First Night, a non-alcoholic New Year’s Eve celebration, and his work in Stockton after the 2003 tornado that devastated the city.

Drury has awarded honorary degrees since 1906. Fogle joins a list of notables who have received honorary degrees, such as: composers Rodgers and Hammerstein (1949), comedian Bob Hope (1973), Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling (1973), Bob Barker (2007), and former presidential candidate Sen. George McGovern (2008).

Fogle addresses graduates in the O'Reilly Family Event Center

Saturday’s ceremony was the second graduation in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. Commencement moved to the new facility in May of 2011. For decades, Drury’s graduation ceremonies were held in Weiser Gymnasium.

Media Contact: Mark Miller, Associate Director of Marketing  and Communications, Office: (417) 873-7390, Mobile: (417) 839-2886, E-mail: markmiller@drury.edu

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Drury University’s Winter Commencement is December 18

NEWS: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 13, 2010 — Drury University will confer degrees to 342 students during Winter Commencement at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 18 in Weiser Gymnasium. 308 students will receive undergraduate degrees and 34 will be given master’s degrees.

This graduation marks the end of an era, as it will be the final commencement ceremony in Weiser Gymnasium. Future graduation ceremonies will be in the O’Reilly Family Event Center. “For 56 years Weiser Gymnasium has been the scene of Drury’s vibrant spring commencement,” says Drury Registrar Gale Boutwell. “An annual winter commencement was added in December 2001 to accommodate a growing number of graduates. The graduation on Dec 18 will provide a means for Drury to honor the last class of Drury students receiving associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees in this historic facility.”

During the final graduation ceremony in Weiser, all of the individuals who have provided commencement addresses in the historic building will be honored in a commemorative program that will be given to graduates and their guests. Civic and community leaders and humanitarians who have received the honorary doctorate in Weiser from 1954 – 2010 will also be recognized.

Dr. Amy-Jill Levine, University Professor of New Testament and Jewish Studies, E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Professor of New Testament Studies, and Professor of Jewish Studies at Vanderbilt University Divinity School and College of Arts and Sciences, is the commencement speaker. Besides holding a Ph.D. from Duke University, Levine also has honorary doctorates from the University of Richmond, the Episcopal Theological Seminary of the Southwest, and the University of South Carolina-Upstate. Levine is the author and editor of several books including, The Misunderstood Jew: The Church and the Scandal of the Jewish Jesus and The Historical Jesus in Context.

Levine, who describes herself as a, “Yankee Jewish feminist who teaches in a predominantly Christian divinity school in the buckle of the Bible Belt,” is no stranger to Drury. Levine was a featured speaker in the 2005-2006 Sustainability convocation series, as well as the 2008-2009 Entrepreneurship & Innovation series. Levine is a vibrant speaker who combines historical-critical rigor, literary-critical sensitivity, and a frequent dash of humor with a commitment to eliminating anti-Jewish, sexist and homophobic theologies.

Contact: Day School: Tim Posey, (417) 873-6859, tposey@drury.edu. CGCS: Stephen Eisele, (417) 873-7872, seisele@drury.edu.

Media: Members of the news media are invited to photograph or videotape the final graduation in Weiser gymnasium.

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Drury is an independent University, church related, grounded in the liberal arts tradition and committed to personalized education in a community of scholars who value the arts of teaching and learning. Education at Drury seeks to cultivate spiritual sensibilities and imaginative faculties as well as ethical insight and critical thought; to foster the integration of theoretical and practical knowledge; and to liberate persons to participate responsibly in and contribute to a global community. For more information, visit www.drury.edu/strategicplan.

University Communications staff are available to news media 24 hours a day at (417) 839-2886. Visit the Office of University Communications online at http://news.drury.edu. Resources include a searchable Expert Guide, staff contacts and downloadable print-quality images and logos.