April 22, 2013
Ty Pierce admits it. Sometimes, a lecture on psychology can be boring. One night teaching his social psychology class at Drury he noticed his students fading, so he asked them if they wanted to see a magic trick. Pierce, an amateur magician since before he could read, performed a trick and it’s become a trademark of his classes.
“During the break, I’ll do a magic trick and it wakes ‘em up a little bit and it seems to make them smile and that’s my drug,” Pierce said.
Pierce knows all about the power of emotion. Besides his usual psychology courses, Pierce teaches human sexuality. Around the nation, human sexuality is consistently one of the most popular classes on college campuses, which comes as no surprise to Pierce.
“It’s easy, it’s the only reason we’re alive,” Pierce said. “It’s what I tell the class, sex is the only reason we’re here. We were all conceived as the result of sex.”
Pierce has taught at Drury for more than two decades and he’s taught human sexuality during most of that time, primarily in the evenings in the College of Continuing Professional Studies. His frank, energetic style has made him popular among the students.
“I had heard about Ty and his teaching style from other students and researched his ratings on line. And heard that he was phenomenal,” said Jennifer Pierson, a Drury junior. “I didn’t know what to expect, but I came into it with an open mind and I was kind of excited to take a class that was one of the highest ranked classes I’ve seen yet at Drury.”
The father of two is passionate about much more than just teaching. As an undergraduate, he knew a young woman who had been date raped, which started him on a crusade against sex crimes. Now, he’ll tell anyone who will listen everything from how to avoid becoming the victim of a sex crime to how to avoid an unwanted pregnancy.
“If I can prevent one child from being molested, one person in my class from being pregnant when they’re not wanting to, or prevent a student from getting a disease or keep a young lady or a child from being raped, my job is done,” Pierce said.
To view a video about Pierce’s teaching style and his efforts against sex crimes, click here.
Story by Mark Miller, associate director of marketing and communications.