Drury and Cooper Robertson Unveil Campus Master Plan
After months of work with renowned architecture and urban design firm Cooper Robertson, Drury University has completed a new campus master plan that will guide the school’s physical evolution for decades to come, and build on the success of recent growth in enrollment, academic programming and alumni engagement.
Drury is making strategic moves to address the needs of today’s students in a rapidly changing world, and set itself apart in the competitive landscape of American higher education. The strategies are being laid out by second-year president Dr. Tim Cloyd, who spearheaded gains in national visibility, enrollment and fundraising in 13 years as president of Hendrix College in Arkansas, which is now a top national liberal arts school.
Drury’s master plan was crafted with extensive input from the Drury and Springfield communities, starting with a week-long charrette in April and continuing throughout 2017. The master planning process has taken place in parallel with a wide-ranging study of Drury’s academic offerings as well as plans for a comprehensive capital campaign. These strategic priorities will inform each other in the coming years as Drury moves to raise its regional and national profile. “Drury’s new master plan provides an essential, visionary framework to anticipate and accommodate our campus needs over the next 25 to 30 years,” says Cloyd. “It is inspired by Drury’s rich legacy, but designed to carry our mission forward deep into the 21st century.”
Drury chose New York-based Cooper Robertson to develop its master plan because of the firm’s extensive experience working with higher education institutions including Ohio State, the University of North Carolina, Yale, Georgetown and Duke University. The firm’s most recent project in the Midwest is a redesign of the Gateway Arch Museum and Visitor Center in St. Louis.
“A good master plan envisions a fabric of buildings, open space and landscape that are knitted together in a cohesive, legible, attractive—and memorable— way,” says John Kirk, partner and principal architect with Cooper Robertson. “Drury’s master plan is ambitious but fully achievable, and I have great confidence in the ability of the leadership and community to make it happen.”
“Drury is dreaming big with this master plan,” says David Hinson, executive vice president, COO and CIO. “We engaged a best-in-class design firm in Cooper Robertson to guide us, and they delivered in spades. The engagement that our Drury community exhibited in this process shines through in the final product. This is a vision that truly reflects this institution.”
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Drury Hires Two New Deans
Dr. Shannon Cuff
In June, Dr. Shannon Cuff ’00, M.Ed. ’04, was named Dean of the School of Education and Child Development.
The move was a homecoming for Cuff, who earned a Bachelor of Arts in education and Master of Education degrees from Drury in 2000 and 2004, respectively. After teaching English at Willard High School, Cuff earned a Ph.D. in literacy education at the University of Missouri-Columbia in 2010. She has most recently been a member of the faculty at Park University in Kansas City. She taught both undergraduate and graduate classes for seven years in addition to her administrative responsibilities as director of the Watson Literacy Center and the school’s Higher Learning Commission accreditation team.
Cuff is an active scholar who has numerous funded grant proposals, national conference presentations and publications to her credit. Her research has focused on service- learning, and community engagement in childhood literacy and with adolescent English language learners. Cuff has also been involved in a number of community-based literacy and reading programs in the Kansas City area.
Dr. Jing Wang
In July, Dr. Jin Wang (pronounced “Wong”) was named Dean of the Breech School of Business.
Wang has a Bachelor of Arts in economics from Zhongshan University in China, a Master of Arts in economics from Ohio University, and a Ph.D. in economics from Kansas State University. He comes to Drury with extensive experience with curriculum innovation, accreditation, fundraising and growing enrollments.
Wang most recently served as dean of the College of Business and Economics at the American University in Kuwait. He served as dean of the Gore School of Business at Westminster College in Utah, where he also was the assistant to the president for international programs. Prior to that, he held administrative and faculty positions at the University of Tampa, Rowan University, the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point and Eureka College.
He brings expertise in the areas of personnel and budgetary management, curriculum revision and development, academic services, enrollment management, international programs, community engagement and business program accreditation.
Wang was selected as a Fulbright Scholar by the U.S. State Department in 2003, has held visiting professor positions in China and was a fellow at Harvard’s Management Development Program in 2005. He has taught both undergraduate and graduate classes and is an active scholar with numerous publications.
Rosalie O'Reilly Wooten Awarded Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters
The O’Reilly Family Event Center was a fitting location when Drury University presented an Honorary Degree of Humane Letters to Rosalie O’Reilly Wooten ’64 at its spring commencement. Wooten has been a member of the Drury Board of Trustees for the past decade, and her foresight and leadership helped make the O’Reilly Center a reality when it opened in 2010.
The O’Reilly Center is just one of the many ways Wooten has positively impacted Drury and the lives of countless people in the Springfield region. Wooten was awarded the honorary degree for an outstanding career and a lifetime of service. “Rosalie is being recognized today as a model businesswoman, philanthropist and friend,” said Lyle Reed, chair of the Drury Board of Trustees.
After graduating from Drury University, Wooten taught high school English for 13 years before devoting most of her career to serving as an Executive Vice President at her family business, O’Reilly Automotive Inc., from 1993 to 2002. She managed telecommunications, risk management and human resources. Her kindness and values made her highly regarded and respected companywide. She currently serves on the company’s Board of Directors.
“Rosalie is a wonderful ambassador for Drury. She has lived the kind of life that our students and alumni can hold up as an example and seek to emulate,” said Drury President Dr. Tim Cloyd.
Wooten has been dedicated to a number of philanthropic endeavors. She serves on many boards, including Ozarks Greenways, CASA Advisory Board, Breast Cancer Foundation of the Ozarks Advisory Board, and Missouri Council for the Arts Board, and she supports several charities.
Wooten has most recently authored a children’s book about her nomadic canine friend, Tippy.
Drury Ranks Among Best Colleges
Drury was listed as the no. 3 school in Missouri by College Consensus, which aggregates data from two sources: the combined average score from a respected list of college rankings by outlets such as U.S. News & World Report and Washington Monthly; and the combined average score of a school’s real student review scores from reputable sites around the web. Overall, College Consensus identified about 1,000 four-year schools in the United States as the best of the best —Drury landed at no. 83 overall.