Dr. Thomas Russo, professor and director of study abroad programs, received an Ozzie Individual Award from the Springfield Regional Arts Council. This award is given to those who embody the pioneering, creative spirit of the Southwest Missouri arts community. Recipients are honored for their extended service, broad involvement, and support beyond professional duties, and have proven themselves to be a catalyst for growth to local arts. Dr. Russo’s involvement with the Greater Ozarks Art Tour, which introduces art to children in rural communities, and his service as chair of the Arts Patronage Sustainability Initiative were cited in the award announcement.

Ashley Morefield and Bre Corbet ’15 won the 2015 Higher Education Committee poster contest sponsored by the Community Partnership of the Ozarks and the Underage Drinking Task Force. Ashley was awarded first place and Bre received second place.

Ashley Morefield and Bre Corbet ’15 won the 2015 Higher Education Committee poster contest sponsored by the Community Partnership of the Ozarks and the Underage Drinking Task Force. Ashley was awarded first place and Bre received second place.



Nine computer science students competed in student contests in the 2015 Consortium for Computing Sciences in Colleges: Central Plains Conference in April.

Daniel Chick ’15, Daiv McBride ’15 and Josef Polodna ’15 placed first in the Student Research Poster contest for their research and development project “Drury Explorer.”

Zach Glossip ‘15, Ian Meyers ’15 and Clayton Sippy ’15 placed second in the Student Research Poster Contest for their research and development project “DUtrition.” Zach Glossip placed third in the Student Research Poster Contest for this research project “A Comparison Between Unity 4 and Inreal Development Kits: What it Means for Game Developers.”

The Drury Explorer app and the DUtirition app are available for Android devices on the Google Play Store.


Dr. Rebecca Burrell, instructor for Drury’s School of Education and Child Development, received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the President of the United States for her commitment to volunteering in the community. In her years of service to oncology patients at CoxHealth and her work with psychiatric patients at the Burrell Center, she has logged over 4,000 hours of volunteering.





Dr. Patricia McEachern, director of the Drury University Forum on Animal Rights and professor for the study of animal rights, was invited to be a Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics. Dr. McEachern visited the center in July.


During the summer 2015 Drury-SIPDRI architecture internship program in Suzhou, China, fifth-year architecture students Jessica Caudill and Tony Yue and fourth-year student Brandon Roeling designed six light rail stations that will be constructed on the 13 stops of the No. 2 Light Rail Line running across the entire Gaoxin District of Suzhou City.


The conceptual design of the stations has been approved by the local government and Planning Bureau, and will move into the construction phase in the coming year. Students participating in the Drury-SIPDRI internship, now in its second year, are led by Drury architecture assistant professor Yong Huang.

The Crowder College-Drury collaboration for the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon competition wrapped up on Oct. 17 with the team taking 8th place overall in the competition. Fifty Drury students from architecture, communications, economics, finance and other majors led the project, which spanned 18 months. The solar powered, disaster-resilient house was built and tested at the Crowder campus during the summer. The house was disassembled and transported to the Irvine, Calif. competition site, where it was re-assembled in October. Students built, tested, lived in and offered tours of the house in October. About 140 teams applied for entry into the competition – 20 were accepted and 14 actually made it to the competition itself.

The Center for Community Studies, Hammons School of Architecture and University of Missouri – Extension completed their ninth year of community/university collaborative visioning activities during the fall semester with the Anderson, Mo. and Pineville, Mo. community visioning studies. Professor Jay G. Garrott, director of the Center for Community Studies and Jeff Barber, state specialist, architectural studies with the University of Missouri – Extension, have completed 41 community projects in 33 communities located in 20 counties in southwest and west central Missouri. Approximately 250 architecture students and 3,200 community members have participated in these collaborations, which have resulted in five communities being selected as Downtown Renewal and Economic Assistance for Missouri D.R.E.A.M. Initiative communities and the creation of new economic capacity in many other communities.

Professor Jay G. Garrott was named a Founder of Close Memorial Botanical Gardens by the Friends of the Gardens. Garrott served as the president of the Close Memorial Advisory Committee from 1997-2000 when the advisory group became Friends of the Gardens. A Founder’s Garden was dedicated on May 24th at the Close Memorial Gardens to honor the 11 people recognized as “Founders of the Gardens.” Each founder’s name has been inscribed on individual stones and placed in the Garden.

David Beach, assistant professor of architecture, signed a contract with software developers Autodesk to publish a series of instructional videos on their Steam/Education website. The eight-part series deals with the connections between building information modeling (BIM) and digital fabrication, and will be published globally and regionally with captions in multiple languages.

A group of Drury architecture students designed exhibit space in partnership with the Missouri Institute of Natural Science (MINS) to help bring dinosaurs to life for the public.

Dr. Panos Leventis, associate professor of architecture, contributed to the new journal Street Art and Urban Creativity, drawing upon his research on immigrant street artists in Athens and their responses to the Greek economic crisis.

Gerard Nadeau, assistant professor of architecture, was invited to conduct a participatory public art project in June at the Hand Art Center at Stetson University in Deland, Florida. The work was featured in Archinet, an online forum for architecture and design culture.

Traci Sooter, associate professor of architecture, published an article titled, “It’s All in the Details: Two Missouri Schools Team Up to Design Tornado Resistant Home” about the Drury-Crowder Solar Decathlon team on the website “The Nature of Cities.”


Associate professor and artist-in-residence Jacqueline Warren is designing a new body of work for the Historic Patterson Hotel on Benton Avenue in Springfield, Mo. She also has new work from her summer studio in Florence, Italy, at the Sherry Leedy Gallery in Kansas City, Mo.

David Cogorno ’06 will custom-make 500 mugs to give to donors to the Kiln project, an alumni-driven project to fund the replacement of Drury’s 35-year-old gas kiln. Drury ceramics students began the fundraising campaign in September. Alumna Mary Moore also donated 100 mugs toward the cause.


Mugs will be available at Drury University First Friday events for a donation of $30. All of the money collected will contribute to funding the new kiln and kiln shed, which will be designed and built by students in Drury’s architecture design build club. This will be the first student designed and built structure on Drury’s campus.

Donations can be sent to:

Drury University
The Pool Arts Center: Kiln Project
940 N Clay
Springfield, MO 65804

Todd Lowery, associate professor of art & art history, had an exhibition in May at the Galleri S Östersund in Östersund, Sweden. Lowery also has a painting on display in Sveg, Sweden. In December, he will have artwork and copies of his book Enoikiazetai included in a group show at the Galleri S Östersund.

Tom Parker Bad Weather over TopekaEmeritus professor of art & art history Tom Parker had his collection of work entitled “Calamities and the History of Science” shown the Mulvane Art Museum at Washburn University as part of their fall season. Parker’s work was displayed August 21 through October 24, 2015.

Associate professor of art & art history Rebecca Miller and Dr. Tom Russo’s collaborative works are on display at the Springfield-Branson National Airport’s ArtPort Gallery in the exhibition “Glamour, Glitz and Noir” through November 2015.

Glamour, Glitz and Noir

Glamour, Glitz and Noir

Professor Rebecca Miller’s piece “Dear Alfred #18,” archival pigment print, was accepted into the special web exhibition for the 2015 Photo Review International Photography Competition. The Photo Review is a nonprofit international publication based in Langhome, Pa.

Dear Alfred #18

Dear Alfred #18


Leah Hamilton, director and instructor for the arts administration program, was the keynote speaker for the Missouri Association of Community Arts Agencies (MACAA) annual conference in Columbia, Mo. in April.

Several arts administration majors completed professional summer internships throughout the nation: Sydney Boyle at Tulsa Symphony Orchestra in Tulsa, Okla.; Claire Griddin at Glimmerglass Opera in New York; Bri Hopkins at Springfield Regional Arts Council in Springfield, Mo.; Megan McCarty at Branson Regional Arts Council in Branson, Mo.; and Hannah Start at the Springfield Art Museum in Springfield, Mo.


Students majoring in psychology will now complete coursework in one of two tracks. The applied track is designed for students who want to use their knowledge of psychology in other professions, and it focuses more intentionally on workforce preparation in a liberal arts tradition. The research track is geared toward students who are interested in pursuing a graduate degree in psychology.

In March 2015, 25 behavioral sciences students presented the results of their 12 different yearlong research projects at the Mid-America undergraduate Psychology Research Conference in Franklin, Indiana. One student also presented research at the 2015 Southeastern Psychological Association conference in Hilton Head, South Carolina.

Dr. David Derossett ’90, assistant professor of psychology, was elected to the Board of Directors for the nonprofit Springfield Community Land Trust (SCLT), which addresses Springfield’s affordable housing crisis.

Dr. Jana Bufkin, associate professor of criminology, was appointed to be the assistant dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and has assumed responsibility for organizing and monitoring program and curricular review and assessment.

Dr. Jennie Long, associate professor of criminology, was appointed to serve as the director of Drury’s law and society minor. The program focuses on communication skills, critical thinking, textual and quantitative analysis, and moral reasoning.

The newly established Behavioral Neuroscience Ambassadors Program sends members of the BRAIN student organization to local high schools to promote the behavioral sciences department’s behavioral neuroscience minor.

Dr. Erin Kenny, associate professor of anthropology, presented her research to the Society for Economic Anthropology, held at the University of Kentucky. Her presentation was based on the work she did as a Fulbright Scholar.

Dr. Rachel Herrington, assistant professor of psychology and licensed clinical psychologist, served on the planning committee for the Mental Health, Healthcare Law, and Ethics conference in Springfield. The training event targeted psychologists, physicians, attorneys, law enforcement and related fields, and addressed the dilemmas that individuals in each field face when encountering clients, patients or colleagues battling mental health problems.


Students from the day, evening and MBA programs were inducted into the Beta Gamma Sigma AACSB-affiliated honor society during a ceremony in Stone Chapel on April 22.

Beta Gamma Sigma Induction

Beta Gamma Sigma Induction

Breech School of Business students and faculty visited Drury alumni in Northwest Arkansas in April while touring the Walmart headquarters and Ozark Harvest Group.

Breech Tours Walmart

Breech students tour Walmart

The annual Breech Golf Tournament took place at Millwood Golf and Racquet club. The event supports the Breech study abroad program.

Breech Golf Tournament

Breech Golf Tournament



Student Masha Podokshik received a $1,000 James G. Stremler Study Abroad scholarship from the Alpha Lambda Delta National Honor Society. Podokshik, a communication major from St. Louis, is Drury’s first Alpha Lambda Delta scholarship recipient. She will study in Spain during the spring 2016 semester.

Dan Prater MBA ’07, director of the center for nonprofit communication, led a strategic communication workshop for the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine (STFM) board of directors in Kansas City in July. The training included sessions on message development and effective communication techniques.


The School of Education and Child Development received a $10,000 grant from the Darr Family Foundation to support work with children and families in the community. The grant helps provide transportation to campus for the students that Drury students work with in after-school and evening programs. Additionally, it provides instructional materials for family literacy and math skills that can be sent home with the K-12 students.

Students Anne Beurlein, Loni Vileger and Sara Siegrist received scholarships established by John Beurlein and completed part of their student teaching requirement at Hem Sheela Model School in India.

Students Anne Beurlein, Loni Vileger and Sara Siegrist received scholarships established by John Beurlein and completed part of their student teaching requirement at Hem Sheela Model School in India.


During his sabbatical during the 2014-2015 academic year, Dr. Ed Williamson, associate professor of education, researched George Washington Carver and Steven Frost and will publish his findings. You can read more about Dr. Williamson’s research online.

Dr. Jimmie Lee Marler, adjunct instructor for Drury’s Cabool campus, had a one-man art show at the Harlin Museum in West Plains, Mo in August through September 2015. The exhibit consisted of paintings, drawings, pastels, scratch art, printmaking, photographs and watercolors, spanning about 40 years of work.


Drury’s Edward Jones Center for Entrepreneurship and CoxHealth collaborated with faculty members to create a meaningful and challenging program for hospital personnel. As a result, the CoxHealth Leadership Development Program, a yearlong interdisciplinary educational experience that incorporates faculty-created modules that cover such topics as diversity, community health and ethics, was created. Drs. Trish Morris, Jennifer Silva Brown and Mary Utley served as faculty experts throughout the program’s first year.


Dr. Kevin Henderson, assistant dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, partnered with Mike Stevens, executive director of the Moxie Cinema in Springfield, to write and secure another grant from the Missouri Humanities Council. This grant and its matching funds will sustain Drury’s Humanities and Arts film series for its fourth season in downtown Springfield. The film series, directed by Dr. Henderson, combines screenings of classic, foreign and independent movies with post-film humanities discussions led by Drury faculty members. Several hundred Drury students, alumni and community members have attended these Saturday screenings in recent years. Last year’s 50th anniversary screening of On the Waterfront had a turnout of 130, a new box office record for The Moxie. The 2015-2016 schedule again includes three films in the fall and three films in the spring.

Drs. Cathy Blunk and Shelley Wolbrink attended the International Medieval Congress in Leeds, England in July to present research papers. While there, they toured the Royal Armory and were able to “play” with medieval weapons.

Wolbrink and Blunk


Dr. Elizabeth Nichols, professor of Spanish, signed a book contract with Rowman & Littlefield for her manuscript “No Such Thing as Inner Beauty: Dress, Cosmetics and Success in Venezuela, 1850-2013.” The book is a culmination of her Fulbright research as well as her time as a visiting library scholar at the University of New Mexico.


Bill Garvin, director of Drury’s Olin Library, was appointed by Springfield Mayor Robert Stephens as a trustee on the Springfield-Greene County Library board. Garvin will also present at the Missouri Association of Museums and Archives’ annual conference in Columbia, Mo. in October.


The Springfield-Drury Girls’ Choir sang two adjudicated performances in April at the Bicknell Performing Arts Center in Pittsburg, Kan. The choirs were assisted by Drury music education students Makayla Scott, Bridget Voda, Justin Lepper and Jacob Prince.

Dr. Christopher Koch, associate professor of music, was appointed Music Director of the Springfield Regional Opera.


Dr. Joseph Rivera, adjunct instructor for the philosophy and religion department, recently completed a Ph.D. and released his first monograph, The Contemplative Self after Michel Henry: A Phenomenological Theology in September.

Student Cassie Atchley was selected to participate in the selective Women in Philosophy summer program at the University of California San Diego.


electrostatic levitronUnder the direction of associate professor of physics Dr. Gregory Ojakangas, physics majors Nicholas Overmon and Alex Murdaugh are developing a prototype of an “oeelectronistatic levitron,” a new invention which will use electrostatic charge distributions to stably levitate a lightweight spinning top above a charged torus. The device, modeled after a toy invented in 1976 which levitates a spinning magnetic top, should work in much the same manner, but will use electrostatic charges instead of magnets, and will be much lighter and cheaper to construct. Overmoon and Murdaugh presented preliminary results of their experiments at the Society of Physics Students meeting at William Jewel College in November 2014.

Chain ShelfInspired by the “chain phenomenon” discovered by Steve Mould, Drury physics students Deborah Peana, Parker Liabraaten and Taylor Pemberton examined the physics of a long chain of beads as it slides off a tabletop. The chain was initially arranged in a series of back-and-forth rowns. The end was then pulled off the table just far enough so that it started to slide on its own. When each section reached a high enough speed, it formed a nearly perfect horizontal “shelf,” which extended off of the end of the table for several centimeters before turning downward toward the floor (Figure 1). Under the direction of Dr. Ojakangas, the team found that the phenomenon can be described by a theoretically predicted waveform which moves opposite to the chain, so that the edge of the shelf moves in the direction of the chain’s motion, at a speed that is (1-1/sqrt(2)) times the speed of the chain itself. This work was presented at the Society of Physics Students’ meeting at William Jewell College in November 2014.

Students Wayne Elliott and Miles Moser, along with Dr. Ojakangas, are working on research expanding on the work of astronaut Donald Pettit. Dr. Pettit performed experiments in 2013 in which he induced electrically charged water droplets to orbit about an oppositely charged knitting needle in the weightless environment of the International Space Station. Elliott and Moser have been measuring the trajectories of the orbiting droplets Dr. Pettitt recorded in videos. An outgrowth of a class project for Mechanics II, the research involves comparing measured motions with those predicted using a personal computer. The computational results agree well with the measured motions, and also reveal aspects of the nonlinear dynamics of the system, including a mathematical phenomenon known as chaos.

Mechanics II Research 2

The students presented the research at the Society of Physics Students’ meeting at William Jewel College in November 2014 and will soon submit to a peer-reviewed journal, with astronaut Donald Pettit as co-author.

Society of Physics Students

Under the direction of assistant professor of physics Dr. Christos Deligkaris, GW McElfresh ’15, Alan Greene ’15, Debbie Peana ’15 and current student Breanna Tuhlri worked on various computational biophysics projects, including how carcinogens bind to human genes and cause DNA damage, and how the drug heparin binds to cancer-related proteins. All four students presented their work at the Midwest American Chemical Society meeting in Columbia, Mo. during the 2014-2015 academic year.


Dr. Dan Ponder, professor of political science, had his article “Public Opinion and Democratic Part Ownership of Prosperity: The Political Legacy of the Great Depression, 1955-2013” published in American Politics Research.

Assistant professor of political science Dr. Justin Leinaweaver and associate professor of political science Dr. Ted Vaggalis recently attended and presented at the annual meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association in Chicago. This is the second-largest political conference in the world.


The Smith-Glynn-Callaway Medication Foundation awarded $10,000 for scholarships to students in Drury’s pre-health sciences programs. More than half of those who have received Smith-Glynn-Callaway Pre-Med Undergraduate Scholarships in the last 10 years have attended, or are already accepted to, medical school. Other recipients have pursued careers in nursing or as physician assistants. This year the foundation gave an additional $4,000 to fund summer research conducted by undergraduate students under the direction of assistant professor of chemistry Dr. Madhuri Manpadi. The research is focused on compounds that will help facilitate the discovery of new anti-cancer agents. Students from the sophomore to senior level are conducting this work.


MBA students, Dr. Janie Prewitt and MBA program director Angie Adamick traveled to Athens and Aegina, Greece. Eleni Dellagrammaticas, director of the Drury Center in Greece, provided opportunities for the students to visit businesses, government offices and cultural sites while there. The MBA group spent a week engaging with community and business leaders in Aegina and Athens. They met with companies from a variety of sectors and gained an understanding of Greece’s economy and the role it plays in international markets. A highlight of the week was a visit to the Greek Parliament, where the group was welcomed by name in a plenary session.

MBA in Greece Again

A group of Drury students spent a month this summer learning about the Middle Ages through a “lived experience” study abroad trip in Rome. The experience included a day trip to the town of Orvieto, where students got a glimpse of centuries-old small-town life.


The Drury student Rose O’Neill club was founded in spring 2015 to carry forward the legacy of Rose O’Neill at Drury University. The club provides a supportive space for all students at Drury who are committed to the liberal arts and to fostering the intellectual, personal and professional growth of women at Drury.




The 2015-2016 Hammons School of Architecture lecture series explores the theme “micro/MCARO.” Speakers represent differing scales of design and research practices, from materials and building details to urban investigation. Speakers in the fall semester include Elaine Molnar (Sept.), a partner in the global architectural practice Snohetta; and Alejandro Fernandez (November 18), design director and senior associate at Gensler in Boston, Mass.


The Summer Institute for the Visual Arts (SIVA) hosted a visiting artist lecture series over the summer semester, featuring Christine Laquet, Ben Kinsley, Chelsea Knight and Matt Barruso.

SIVA presented a pop-up art exhibition at the Drury on C-Street Gallery to coincide with the C-Street City Market Summer Bazaar on July 25. The exhibition featured work from SIVA participants enrolled in the Master of Arts in Studio Art and Theory (MART) program.

The tenth annual Drury/MSU Art History Symposium was help in April at the Springfield Art Museum. This year marked one decade of open and free to the public lectures presented by art history students at Drury and MSU. This is a juried competition and a maximum of three students from each school are chosen to present.

DU-MSU Art History Symposium 043015


The 8th annual Self Employment in the Arts (SEA) conference on February 21 hosted a record crowd of students and area professionals in writing, art, music and theatre. Doug Johnston ’02 and Ron Tanski ’89 presented, and Jennifer Murvin, Cole Clesser and professor Robert Westenberg, program chair of Drury’s theatre department, debated the pros and cons of attending graduate school.

The 7th annual Women’s Entrepreneurship Symposium (WES) on March 21 featured speakers Weston Kissee ’08, Catherine Johns, Rita Baron ’99 and Terry Reynolds ’76 and achieved its highest attendance yet.



During Breech Business Week in April, more than 20 business professionals visited Breech classrooms as part of the Professor for a Day program. Breech also held various workshops and events during the week to focus on helping students develop professionally.

Professor for a Day Breech

Students, faculty and staff played nine holes with tennis balls and golf clubs on the Drury campus as part of the campus golf fundraiser to raise funds for the Aegina Volunteer’s school supply program.

Campus Golf


Breech School of Business held a speed networking event during which business professionals helped Breech students prepare for their first job interview. Students in a Breech project management class established this annual event four years ago.

Breech Networking Event

The annual Breech Student Award Luncheon recognized student achievements. Megan Darnell ’15 shared her Breech experience with the attendees. Ten juniors were presented with awards. Other awards presented included the Internship Achievement award presented to Austin Gastineau, the Study Abroad Engagement Award presented to Alex Fowler, the Student Leadership Award presented to Jeremy Keel, and the Outstanding CCPS Business Administration Award presented to Ashton Glenn. These recipients received gifts from Obazzie Classics, courtesy of Ebenezer Obasiolu ’14.

Breech Student Award Luncheon


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