military friendly

Vietnam veteran earns art degree — and respect from faculty

Drury art student Richard Hunter is proof that it’s never too late to learn something new. The 64-year-old graduated on Dec. 13 with an art degree. Hunter is a retired Vietnam veteran, and though he doesn’t consider himself a natural artist, he certainly has made an impression on his professors and classmates.

This year he received the Boyko Weltanschauung Award, which is presented to students who have made the biggest impact on art department faculty, and challenge instructors to re-examine their teaching strategies and think about why they teach. Hunter is just the second recipient in 11 years.

“As one of our older students, I find him completely open to critiques of his works and is one of the hardest working students that I have ever known,” said Rebecca Miller, a photography professor. “His life experiences bring so much to the classroom that he will be one of those students I will remember fondly for years to come because of his positive outlook on life.”

Richard Hunter in the ceramics workshop at Pool Art Center.

Richard Hunter in the ceramics workshop at Pool Art Center.

Hunter prefers working with ceramics and photography. As a beekeeper, he’s particularly inspired by bees and the hexagon shapes they make, which he’s incorporated into his art. He is also drawn to graffiti art and has photographed the traveling artwork on trains rolling through town.

One of Hunter’s biggest inspirations is his younger classmates.

“One of things I’ve absolutely loved is that I get to be around young artists and that I have had a chance to see art through their eyes,” said Hunter. “Being with young artists makes me feel young again! It stirs up my imagination.”

Hunter has also enjoyed working on the art department’s annual Veterans Day tradition of taking portrait photos of veterans free of charge. He would eventually like to start a volunteer art therapy program to aid disabled veterans.

“Art really helps disabled veterans to relax and seems to help heal people both mentally and physically,” said Hunter. “I just want to share what I have learned and maybe even learn from them.”

Hunter appreciated that his professors adjusted to his learning style and worked with him on an individual basis. The small school environment made him feel comfortable, he says.

“The teachers have really bent over backward to inspire me, encourage me to do good work and look at my art in different ways,” he says. “They’re willing to be more personal and they’re willing to listen.”

###

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

Drury & Student Veterans of America to hold Veterans Day ceremony

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Nov. 6, 2014 — Drury University and the Drury chapter of Student Veterans of America will hold a public Veterans Day ceremony at 11 a.m., Tuesday, Nov. 11 at the Armed Forces Plaza outside of the O’Reilly Family Event Center. The event will be held inside the OFEC in case of inclement weather.

The featured speaker will be Bryce Lockwood, Senior Vice Commander of the Military Order of the Purple Heart. Lockwood is a retired U.S. Marine and survivor of the attack on the USS Liberty during the Six Day War of 1967. The ceremony will include a presentation of the colors by the Ozark High School ROTC Color Guard and patriotic music performed by the Bear Brass 135th Army Band and the Drury Chamber Choir.

Lockwood will present a proclamation designating Drury University an official supporter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart. This symbolic designation embodies Drury’s long tradition of serving those who have served our country. In the days after World War II, buses brought soldiers from Fort Leonard Wood to classes held on the Springfield campus. Today, one of Drury’s 11 branch locations is at Fort Leonard Wood.

The commitment continues today. Earlier this fall, Drury was named a “Military Friendly School” by Victory Media and was ranked No. 3 in the Midwest on U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Colleges for Veterans” list. These independent rankings affirm Drury’s commitment to supporting higher education opportunities for active duty and veteran service members. Drury supports federal initiatives that help veterans and active-duty service members apply for, pay for and complete their degrees and has designated staff in Springfield and at branch locations to help coordinate these services.

Media contact: Kristy Nelson, Director of Marketing – College of Continuing Professional Studies at (417) 873-7317 or knelson008@drury.edu.

 ###

Drury named a “Military Friendly School” for fourth straight year

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 23, 2014 — For the fourth year in a row, Victory Media has recognized Drury University as a Military Friendly School. The 2015 Military Friendly Schools list honors the colleges, universities and trade schools doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans and their spouses as students.

“Earning the 2014-2015 Military Friendly Schools designation puts Drury University in the top 20 percent of all eligible schools approved for G.I. Bill funding, and it tells prospective military students that Drury is pre-vetted with leading programs and policies to support military students,” says Sean Collins, Vice President at Victory Media, adjudicator of Military Friendly ratings and publisher of G.I. Jobs.

The Military Friendly Schools website (www.militaryfriendly.com) features interactive lists and search tools to help military students find the best school to suit their unique needs and preferences. Those selected by Victory Media exhibit leading practices in the recruitment and retention of students with military experience.

MFS15_200x200

Drury has a long tradition of serving those who have served our country. In the days after World War II, buses brought soldiers from Fort Leonard Wood to classes held on the Springfield campus. Today, one of Drury’s 11 branch locations is at Fort Leonard Wood.

“Being in the service can give a person the feelings of a fast-paced and stressful environment,” says Katelyn Vernon, president of the Drury chapter of Student Veterans of America. “But the thought of changing your path in life and returning to school is almost more stressful. Luckily, Drury is there with you every step of the way. The staff is knowledgeable of all the requirements from the Veterans Administration, which ensures everything is processed quickly and smoothly. I am proud that I had the opportunity to attend Drury and was able to share and influence other students with my experiences in the service.”

Victory Media’s annual Guide to Military Friendly Schools will be distributed in print and digital format to hundreds of thousands of active and former military personnel.

For more information on how Drury helps veterans find academic and career success, go to www.drury.edu/military.

###

Student veterans group challenges DU community to military fitness test

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., April 25, 2014 — The newly formed Drury chapter of Student Veterans of America (SVA) is holding its first fundraising event Saturday morning. SVA is challenging Drury students, faculty and staff to pass a military physical fitness test.

The event will be held at 9 a.m., Saturday, April 26, at Sunderland Field. The field is located just south of the Sunderland Residence Hall and is adjacent to Benton Avenue. Media are invited to cover the event. The challenge includes two minutes each of timed push-ups, sit-ups, and pull-ups or flexed-arm hang, plus a two-mile run.

Money from entry fees and donations will benefit the Home at Last program, which assists homeless veterans in Springfield. Home at Last is a new program funded by a Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) grant from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

Drury’s SVA chapter was founded earlier this academic year under the leadership of student veterans on campus. In September, Drury was named a Military Friendly School by Victory Media. The designation puts Drury in the top 20 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools in the country that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans, and their spouses as students and ensure their success on campus. The Military Friendly designation is another example of Drury’s deep and continuing commitment to meeting the educational goals of military students.

For more information about the physical fitness challenge or SVA, contact SVA president-elect Katelyn Vernon, at (817) 694-4461 or kvernon@drury.edu.

###

Drury ranks 3rd in the Midwest among Best Regional Colleges for Veterans

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Dec. 5, 2013 – Drury University is ranked 3rd among Best Regional Colleges for Veterans in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report. The rankings can be viewed at Best Colleges for Veterans.

U.S. News & World Report established the rankings to help veterans pursue a college education under the Post 9/11 GI Bill. Schools reported on their veteran benefits as part of the broader survey and data collection of undergraduate schools by U.S. News during spring 2013. In total, there are 234 ranked schools. Drury is the highest ranked university in Missouri.

“I wasn’t surprised to hear that Drury ranked high,” said Army Veteran and Drury student, Brent Wilkinson.  “I can’t give the staff at Drury enough kudos – the knowledge they have is incredible. Tammie (Drury advisor) has helped so many veterans come into the school and she made surethat everything I did was in line with the VA (Veteran’s Affairs).”

Earlier this year, Drury was ranked 8th among Midwest Regional Universities in the publication U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges 2014.

###

Drury is named a Military Friendly School for 2014

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 10, 2013 — Drury University has been named a Military Friendly School by Victory Media. The 2014 Military Friendly Schools® list honors the top 20 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools in the country that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans, and their spouses as students and ensure their success on campus.

“Inclusion on the 2014 list of Military Friendly Schools® shows Drury University’s commitment to providing a supportive environment for military students,” said Sean Collins, vice president at Victory Media and a nine-year Navy veteran. “The need for education is growing and our mission is to provide the military community with transparent, world-class resources to assist in their search for schools.”

The Military Friendly Schools® media and website, found at www.militaryfriendlyschools.com, feature the list, interactive tools and search functionality to help military students find the best school to suit their unique needs and preferences.  The 1,868 colleges, universities and trade schools on this year’s list exhibit leading practices in the recruitment and retention of students with military experience.  These schools have world-class programs and policies for student support on campus, academic accreditation, credit policies, flexibility and other services to those who served.

For example, Drury recognizes the skills and education that members of the military receive through various training programs. Students may submit their military transcripts to Drury’s College of Continuing Professional Studies where an individual can earn up to 31 hours of transfer credit based on military training and classes.

“Drury has exceeded all of my expectations in everything from helping me with my GI Bill, to providing flexibility so that I can continue to satisfy my military obligations as a reservist,” said Bradley Ray, an Air Force veteran, reservist and fifth year accounting student. “Drills, annual tours, deployments; Drury is more than willing to work with veterans to ensure both their education and service needs are met.”

A full story and detailed list of 2014 Military Friendly Schools® will be highlighted in the annual Guide to Military Friendly Schools ®, distributed in print and digital format to hundreds of thousands of active and former military personnel in early October.

Media Contact: Kristy Nelson, M.A., Director of Marketing for Drury CCPS, Office: (417) 873-7868, Mobile: (417) 380-9803, Email: knelson008@drury.edu

###

Drury is named a Military Friendly School

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Sept. 17, 2012 — Drury University is a Military Friendly School according to Victory Media, a media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life. The list honors the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans, and spouses as students, and ensure their success on campus.

“Inclusion on the 2013 list of Military Friendly Schools shows Drury University’s commitment to providing a supportive environment for military students,” said Sean Collins, director for G.I. Jobs and vice president at Victory Media. “As interest in education grows, we’re thrilled to provide the military community with transparent, world-class resources to assist in their search for schools.”

The complete list of the 1,739 colleges that were recognized as military friendly schools can be found at www.militaryfriendlyschools.com. Each college, university, and trade school on this year’s list exhibits leading practices in the recruitment and retention of students with military experience.

In 1947, Drury began offering night classes in Springfield to address the needs of the military for returning veterans after World War II. Before Drury offered classes at Fort Leonard Wood, soldiers stationed at the fort would bus to Springfield to take classes from Drury faculty.

Now in its fourth year, the 2013 list of Military Friendly Schools was compiled through extensive research and a data-driven survey of more than 12,000 Veterans Affairs-approved schools nationwide. A full story and detailed list of 2013 Military Friendly Schools will be highlighted in the annual G.I. Jobs Guide to Military Friendly Schools, distributed in print and digital format to hundreds of thousands of active and former military personnel in early October.

Media Contact: Marti Marlin, Academic Advisor, Veterans Affairs Representative, Office: (417) 873-6881, E-mail: mmarlin@drury.edu

###

G.I. Jobs magazine names Drury University a military friendly school

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., Nov. 8, 2011 — G.I. Jobs, a magazine for military personnel transitioning into civilian life, has awarded Drury University the designation of Military Friendly School. The 2012 Military Friendly Schools list honors the top 20 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members and veterans as students. Drury reported an enrollment of 2,094 active duty military personnel, veterans and military dependents for the G.I. Jobs survey.

In its effort to help student veterans find the right school, G.I. Jobs incorporated a survey of student veterans. This feedback provides prospective military students with insight into the student veteran experience at a particular institution based on peer reviews from current students. Student veteran survey feedback can be viewed at www.militaryfriendlyschools.com/2012 list.

Michael Dakduk, executive director for the Student Veterans of America says, “The Military Friendly Schools list is the go-to resource for prospective student veterans searching for schools that provide the right overall experience. Nothing is more compelling than actual feedback from current student veterans.”

The 1,518 colleges, universities and trade schools on this year’s list prioritize the recruitment of students with military experience. These schools offer scholarships and discounts, full-time staff, military credit and other services to those who served. The 2012 list of Military Friendly Schools® was compiled through extensive research and a data driven survey of more than 8,000 schools nationwide. Methodology, criteria and weighting for the list were developed with the assistance of an Academic Advisory Board (AAB) consisting of educators from schools across the country.  A full list of board members can be found at http://militaryfriendlyschools.com/Article/advisory-board/.

Veterans Contact: Marti Marlin, Academic Advisor/VA Representative, Office: (417) 873-6881, E-mail: mmarlin@drury.edu

###