Contact:
Dr. Jo Van Arkel
Chair of English Department
Professor of English
Director of the Writing Center
Office: (417) 873-7273
jvanarke@drury.edu

About the English Programs

Studying English at Drury means:

  1. Working closely in small classes with active faculty whose first priority is teaching.
  2. Having many opportunities, formal and informal, for experiences outside the classroom.
  3. Studying alongside a diverse group of well-prepared and intellectually engaged students in English and writing.
  4. Following a strong curriculum that can lead students directly to careers and to graduate and professional programs in English, law, writing, library science, business and other fields.

The English department has an active student body involved in a wide variety of extracurricular activities, all of which offer important leadership opportunities for qualified and interested students.  These duties are not only a labor of love for our students, but they also provide valuable pre-professional experience:

  1. We are a member of Sigma Tau Delta, the National Honor Society of English, and elect officers each year.  Sigma Tau Delta provides a strong voice for students, organizing social and cultural activities and working closely with the faculty sponsor and other faculty in setting the direction of the department.
  2. We select deserving students to serve in a number of on-campus internships and engaged learning opportunities.  As on-campus interns, students may work with social media as editors and writers, or as tutors for international students in our English for Academic Purposes Program.  They may also work as graphic designers and readers for our flagship literary journal, The Gingko Tree Review.  Occasionally, students may have opportunities to work as grant writers for various on-campus programs such as the Women’s Resource Center at the Rose O’Neill House.  We also help students develop off-campus internships and engaged learning experiences in their home communities.
  3. Students take leadership positions planning and organizing various events that feature visiting writers, student readings, career fairs, and service-learning projects.
  4. The Writing Center is staffed by students, many of them English and Writing majors.  Work in the Writing Center gives students with an interest in writing and teaching valuable experience.
  5. We work closely with public schools in the neighborhood, and encourage our students to offer their time in a wide variety of capacities, including as tutors, readers, and mentors.
In addition, English and writing students have a strong leadership presence in other organizations such as Think Green, Amnesty International, Allies, Alliance for Minority Minds, The Student Union Board (SUB), Student Government Association, The Drury Mirror (the weekly student newspaper) and others.

For more information, contact Jo Van Arkel, chair of the English department, at jvanarke@drury.edu.