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Drury Student Spotlight: Dre Hill

For Dre Hill, life is all about motion. The sophomore animation major at Drury is learning to use motion to bring his personal and career passions to life.

It’s a direction he’s wanted to pursue since he was young.

“When I was in middle school, as part of the high school selection process we had certain programs of study that certain schools offered,” Dre explains. “And so at the high school that I ended up choosing, animation was one of the things that you could study.”

Dre stayed the path when he made his college decision, moving from his home in Fort Worth, Texas, to explore and study animation at Drury.   

“I just enjoy the freedom of expression that comes with being able to make something move and give it life,” Dre says.

Dre’s interest in animation has its origin in an appreciation for comics and superheroes. Some of his earliest memories of art in motion are of Spider-Man slinging through the streets of New York to save the day. Now his dream is to one day create an original animated series staring his own unique brand of young heroes.

“It’s funny because ‘Into the Spider-Verse’ came out not too long ago,” Dre says. “And when I went to see it for the first time, it kind of clicked. Like a realization that this is what I want to do and I was really excited about that.”

And his classes at Drury are helping him move toward that goal. Dre says he is a kinetic learner, and so the hands-on experience facilitated by his Drury instructors is invaluable.

“One of the things about Steve Carpenter is he teaches everything that he thinks we need to know going in, but also tries to situate it in a way that feels like a real-world studio environment,” Dre says. “You’ve got harsh, clear-cut deadlines and you might have reoccurring projects back-to-back. You get feedback and then might have to go back and change things.”

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Dre has even been able to apply what he learned from classes that might not initially sound like animation courses. For example, his creative writing classes have proved to be an outlet for him to explore the characters and ideas at the center of his personal vision.

All the while, Dre keeps himself in motion on the track. A freshman walk-on to Drury’s track and field team, Dre has run in several collegiate middle-distance, relay, and cross country events. Between classes and projects, he manages to fit in workouts with his teammates.

After graduation, Dre hopes to continue running, and he can’t really imagine himself slowing down in other areas, either. Once he finishes his studies, he hopes to dive right into working at a professional animation studio, following an internship. Always in motion, Dre knows these are just the next steps towards making his dreams a reality.