Summer Pals and Summer Quest

Drury University > The Center for Gifted Education > Summer Pals and Summer Quest

Drury University is happy to offer a summer experience for gifted students. Courses are taught by highly qualified, effective teachers who understand and use both enrichment and acceleration.  Courses are hands-on, activity oriented, and highly motivating.

The goals of Summer Quest/Summer Pals are:

  1. To provide opportunities for students to interact with peers of similar academic abilities and interests.
  2. To encourage students to use their intellectual and creative abilities.
  3. To allow students to pursue areas of interest they would not have a chance to study elsewhere.

Director, Center for Gifted Education – Mary Potthoff
Resident Psychologist – Brandi Klepper, Psy.D.
Ariele Lee – Program Coordinator

Dates are June 20 – July 1, 2022  8:30 am – 11:30 am.
Cost is $195
Location: Day Spring School, 2157 N. Prospect, Springfield

He has absolutely loved camp this year! On day one, he said it was an awesome day and the best camp ever. We’re grateful for all the time your staff and you invest in the kids and this great opportunity.  -Parent of Summer Quest Student, 2021

How to Apply

  1. Locate and complete the application form for the proper grade level. Register by the grade you are in now. For example, at the end of the school year, if you are in 4th grade, please register for a 4th grade class.
  2. For Summer Quest, obtain certification from school.
  3. For Summer Pals, ask the school to complete the checklist in grades K and 1. Pre-School teachers or parents can complete the checklist on the Pre-K child.
  4. Have the child select the courses he/she desires. Be sure to rank all choices desired. Put a 0 by classes not desired.
  5. Attach tuition check or money order for $195 to application form. Checks should be made payable to SUMMER QUEST or SUMMER PALS. Or you may pay online.
  6. Mail application, tuition (or scholarship information) and certification to:

    Summer Quest OR Summer Pals
    Drury University
    900 N. Benton, Lay Hall 103
    Springfield, MO 65802
    (417) 873-7386

    There is no deadline for registration UNLESS you are applying for a financial need scholarship (see Scholarships for that information). Classes just fill up so apply early.

Tuition & Online Payment

The cost for each Summer Pals / Quest class is $195. Classes with additional fees for materials or field trips are noted on the course selection form. This additional fee will be collected when the student is notified of placement in the class. Total class cost (or scholarship application) must accompany application.

There is a withdrawal fee of $30. Refunds must be requested in writing.

Pay Tuition Here

Summer Pals & Quest Classes

Kindergarten & Pre-Kindergarten Courses

You will be in Penguins one week and Kitchen one week.

Antarctica’s Fuzzy Animals

Come waddle and hop – slide and glide into the icy cold Antarctic regions. Discover how penguins, seals, walruses, whales and many more Antarctic animals live. Join us in a journey through Antarctica as we discover this icy continent! 

Jr. Chef

Have you ever wanted to become an explorer? Have you dreamed about becoming a chef? Now you can be both at the same time! Join the adventure and travel around the world with us to explore the sights, sounds, and tastes of the United States, Mexico, Japan, and Italy. You never know what you will learn next. Experience for yourself by making homemade ice cream, wearing a sombrero, dancing, singing, and much, much more. It’s an adventure you don’t want to miss!
Instructor: Shannon Yarnell, Kindergarten Teacher, Day Spring, Springfield ($10 fee)

Grade 1 Course


Come learn how you are different, but alike.  Explore your five senses and discover how your brain controls all of your body functions.  We will study the heart, lungs and digestive system.  We will discover how our fingerprints are unique and only yours.  There will be lots of experiments and projects.  Learn how to keep your body healthy.  Have fun learning first aid, CPR, and learn the importance of healthy bones and strong teeth.
Instructor: Dr. Tara Herring, Missouri State University

Grades 2 – 3 Course

Toys, Toys, Toys

What does Force & Motion have to do with toys?  Join us as we investigate what’s really hiding in a toy box!  During the first week, we’ll learn about Sir Issac Newton and his discoveries of Force & Motion. His theories will be put to the test through experiments using toys.  We’ll ask questions about toys that work using vibration, rotary motion, straight line motion, and curved line motion. With a matchbox track course in the classroom, we will create hills, ramps and turns in the ramp. Then we will experiment with force as we roll toy cars of various masses down the ramp. How does magnetism and electricity work within toys? You will find the answer. We will also use robots and Osmo games to inspire creativity, critical thinking and collaboration skills among like-minded peers. ($10 fee)
Instructor:  Susan Trotter, David Harrison Elementary, Springfield

Grades 3 – 4 Course

Maker Movement

The Maker Movement is a sort of technology-based Do-It-Yourself culture.  In this class we will be building with a variety of materials including 3D printing, sewing, paper projects, Legos, origami, and a few small electronics.  Projects you can plan on include designing your own stuffed animal, pop up cards, making a doodlebot, creating a miniature painting, making candles and soap, and Zentangling.  You will also have some choice time for independent projects. We’ll be doing a lot of creating and building!($10 fee)
Instructor: Elicia Ligon, Phelps Center for Gifted Education – WINGS, Springfield

Grades 4 – 5 Course

M^3!  (Mysterious Mathematical Matters)

Are you ready to change your mathematical mindset? Do you like art, nature, puzzles, persevering in problem-solving, seeing structure in everyday life, modeling with mathematics, using tools for precision, and designing? If your answer is yes to any of these, then you must love the study of numbers and structure, and the application of mathematics and you may NOT even know it! Join us as we take an investigative mathematical approach to things we know and like in our world. We will persevere in our exploration and examination of the math conspiracy that hides in our beautiful world and apply these relationships mathematically and artistically in the world around us.      
Instructor: Audra Uzzell, Phelps Center for Gifted Education – Scholars, Springfield

Rules & Regulations

Click here to view the rules and regulations.


A limited number of financial need scholarships are available. If you would like to be considered for a scholarship, you must enclose the following:

  1. Photocopies of the first two pages of the parents’ or guardians’ most recent federal income tax return AND any attachments of schedules if applicable;
  2. A letter explaining any extenuating circumstances pertinent to existing financial status, including what efforts have been made to obtain money locally;
  3. A $30 registration fee (refundable if no scholarship is awarded) is required to insure that registration for classes can be completed; AND
  4. A letter from the student outlining why he/she wants to attend the program.

Scholarships are awarded solely on the basis of financial need. We encourage parents to contact local businesses, employers, schools, and civic organizations to help fund scholarships. Applications for scholarships must be received BEFORE April 15. All information is required. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

NOTE: If parents are not in the same household, please send copies of both income tax returns.

Please Note:

  • Your application will not be considered for enrollment until the office has received your tuition check, money order, or scholarship application. APPLY EARLY! Many courses fill quickly.
  • Checks or money orders will not be cashed until the student has been accepted.
  • If your child has a specific physical or medical need or condition, please attach a separate letter to the director so that needed accommodations can be made.
  • If a student is operating with an IEP, a copy of the IEP should be attached.

Summer Quest/Summer Pals Staff

Janice Hampton – Director, Summer Quest
Lori Herring – Director, Summer Pals
Mary Potthoff – Director, Center for Gifted Education
Brandi Klepper, Psy.D. – Resident Psychologist 

Additional Information for Summer Opportunity

The Musgrave Boys & Girls Club would be a great place for your child to spend the rest of the day after attending Summer Pals or Summer Quest. Why the Boys & Girls Club? It is located at 720 S. Park and it is a safe place to learn and grow- all while having fun. It is the place where great futures are started each and every day. Hours are M-F, 7:30-5:30 during the summer. Cost is approximately $35 per child, per week, approximately $40 for 2 children in a family and approximately $45 for a family of 3 or more children per week.

If you are applying for and receive a financial need scholarship through Quest/Pals, your cost for Boys & Girls Club is also included. You need to let Mary Potthoff know if you want to add this option.

The facility includes a games room, technology center, art room, music room, dance/fitness room, gymnasium, learning center, and lunch room. It is also adjacent to a city park and we offer daily opportunities for low cost field trips. Meals are free. We offer breakfast, lunch and an afternoon snack. You can check out our facilities online at

Additional questions or concerns about Boys & Girls Club, contact: Cindy Dodson at 862-9249 ext. 104. Please let Mary Potthoff know if you are interested in extending your day with Quest or Pals with Boys and Girls Club at