Drury Leadership Academy

2014 DLA Classes

Morning Courses

Afternoon Courses

Morning Courses

Living the College Life

Do you wonder what college living will be like? Are you worried about the dreaded "Freshman 15" or how you are going to do it on your own? Come join the adventure into the lives of college students. We will learn how to eat healthy in the dorms, how to manage your time effectively, how to get involved in your community and finally we will build a schedule that meets the needs for study hours, social interaction and fun physical activity. We will be taking field trips to fitness centers, participate in a ropes course on campus and meet with various people around Drury to discuss the best ways to have the fullest college experience while staying healthy. This class could fulfill your "lifetime fitness" college credit for any university.  $30 FEE. 

Instructor: John Post, Willard Schools in Willard and Lindsay Paulsell, Willard Schools in Willard


Is euthanasia a viable option for pain?  Is cloning the key to immortality?  Are genetically custom made children the future?  Just because we can, does it mean we should?  As science and technology advance these and many more bio-ethical questions will need answers. Answers that will decide our future!  Join the discussion so you can answer the question…Should we or shouldn’t we?

Instructor: Jackie Carl, Ava High School in Ava

The Power of Story

Humans are storytelling animals.   Stories do more than entertain.  Stories organize our how we see the world, influence how we think, and preserve our cultural.   Drawing on the work of scholars such as Carl Jung (archetypes), Joseph Campbell (comparative mythology), Walter Fisher (narrative theory), and Kenneth Reich (cultural myths), The Power of Story will explore movies, myths, and advertisements to develop a better understanding of ourselves and our culture.

Instructor: Tom Gist, Drury University in Springfield

May the Farce Be With You!

Monty Python. Saturday Night Live. Family Guy.  Check any catalog of the world’s great works of genius, and you will not find any of these among them; instead War and Peace, Hamlet, and Citizen Kane, to name but a few, make up the accepted list of classics. And while there is no debating that these are all noble and significant works, one might ask -- why doesn’t everyone just lighten up?! Why is it that comic works of the stage, screen, and page are all too often viewed as second rate works? Is laughter important?  What is comedy? These and other questions will be asked and answered as students investigate comic theory and the most renowned examples of comedy in literature, theatre, and film, from ancient Greece to the twenty-first century, in May the Farce Be with You. By taking this class, students will learn once and for all whether or not a Trojan Bunny Rabbit (from Monty Python and the Holy Grail) is funny -- or not!

Instructor: Scott Henderson, Columbia Independent School in Columbia, Missouri

DLA 42

What is the answer? Indeed, what is the question? Humans have spent centuries developing methods of scientific inquiry to address our unlimited curiosity and try to improve life along the way. Up to a certain point, however, learning science is as much about memorization of principles as it is about using them to answer questions. Let’s leave that behind for a bit and discuss the construction of knowledge. We will explore the formation of good questions, discuss effective research design, and conduct several inquiries to address our own big questions. Participants will leave one big step closer to conducting their own reliable research.

Instructor: Dr. Kris Wiley, Drury University in Springfield

Afternoon Courses

Global Film and Culture

In this class we will look at documentaries and fictional narratives that tell stories of events that have occurred around the world. Through lectures, viewings, discussions, and group exercises, we will have a deeper understanding of each film's historical, social, political and aesthetic contexts, giving us a greater understanding of the world in which we live. We will also be watching and discussing two of my films, "ICYIZERE: hope," about forgiveness and reconciliation after the 1994 Rwandan genocide, and "Kenya: Until Hope is Found," a documentary about healing from trauma after Kenya's 2007/8 post-election violence. Hopefully we will be able to speak to some of the other filmmakers via Skype.

Instructor: Patrick Mureithi, Filmmaker in Residence, Drury University in Springfield, MO

Slam Poetry

Writing and reading poetry is not new to the adolescent student. However, have they had the opportunity to take their poetry to the next level and compete with it? The international movement of Slam Poetry has been in existence since the 1980’s and recently has become a major event for youth as well through HBO’s Brave New Voices competition. Students are learning that they can give power to their words.  In this class, students will learn how to express their original ideas in poetic form intended for performance. The students will create individual solo performances ranging from 1 to 4 minutes in length by exploring the process of writing, revising, and performing. In addition, there will be opportunities to create team performances. The ultimate goal of the class is to prepare students for the Slam Poetry experience at the end of the two weeks and crown an ultimate Springfield Youth Slam Poet!

Instructor: Gretchen Teague, Central High School in Springfield

Philosophy 101: It's All In Your Head

Of all the disciplines, philosophy asks the deepest and most far-reaching questions. How does one obtain wisdom? Does knowledge come from reason or from experience? What is the ultimate substance of the world? Is it material or ideal? Are human actions free or determined? Is morality relative or absolute? We will investigate these and other problems as we become acquainted with the nature of Western philosophy and philosophical life. To accomplish these goals, you will investigate the works and ideas of such famous philosophers as Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Bacon, Spinoza, Locke, Hume, and others. Required materials: a sense of wonder. 

Instructor: Scott Henderson, Columbia Independent School in Columbia, Missouri

Digital Photography and Photo Realism

Digital imaging allows endless possibilities for creative expression.  Be unique as you explore and compose your own photomontages based on thematic subjects.  You will also learn how to create realistic photocomposition from imaginative sources. This experience provides elements of choice, personal investigation, individual problem-solving skills, and personal expression.  You will produce outcomes that will leave your viewers saying, “Wow, how’d you do that?”  Digital cameras will be provided, though you may choose to bring your own.

Instructor: Gary Strunk, Central High School in Springfield

Senior Leadership Experience

If you have graduated from high school, this is the class available for you to participate in DLA.  This program allows you to attend DLA while participating in an intensive experiential leadership program.  You will take a Drury University Leadership Certificate class in the morning which will focus more on theory and take a leadership laboratory class in the afternoon.  You will use some of the residential activities as a hands-on learning experience to apply what they have been working on in class.  You will live in the dorm and participate in all residential activities.  There will be some time when your role in these activities may differ from a traditional resident as you will be applying your classroom knowledge in a leadership position.  $30 FEE .

Instructor: Drury University Leadership Professor, Drury University in Springfield