Thursday, May 20, 2010

Springfield chapter of NAACP recognizes Drury at its annual Freedom Fund Ball

Springfield chapter of NAACP recognizes Drury at its annual Freedom Fund Ball

SPRINGFIELD, Mo., May 20, 2010 – The Springfield chapter of the NAACP presented Drury University with the Educational Partnership Award at their annual Freedom Fund Ball this past Saturday, May 16.

Drury University first teamed up with the local NAACP chapter in spring 2009, to provide office space for members in the Drury University Diversity Center at Historic Washington Avenue Baptist Church. Since then, Drury has continued its partnership with the organization through a variety of programs, including Drury University’s Summer Scholars.

Francine Pratt

Francine Pratt
“Drury was recognized because of its outstanding educational partnership with the NAACP,” said Francine Pratt, current president of the Springfield chapter of the NAACP.

Pratt went on to highlight several of the projects that the NAACP and Drury have collaborated. “At a ‘Gathering’ meeting we discussed the concept of exposing children to a college environment and Drury created the Summer Scholars Program. Through an e-mail exchange, we noted that we were looking for office space and Drury provided us office space and a telephone.
In preparing for the Martin Luther King, Jr. Essay Contest, we were looking for someone to coordinate the effort and Drury's students, under the leadership of Peter Meidlinger, read over 300 essays during finals week. The NAACP hosted the first ever Religious Leaders luncheon and Drury provided lunch on the Drury campus for the event to educate religious leaders on issues in the community and working together in the future. Peter then led the effort for Springfield to enter the African-American Cultural Technological and Science Olympics at the national NAACP conference in Kansas City, Mo. this year - Springfield will have two representatives for the first time ever.”

Established three years ago and founded by Drury professors, Summer Scholars was created to provide a unique educational experience for African American students in Springfield Public Schools. This year, the Summer Scholars will be on Drury’s campus July 5-17.

For more information on the NAACP go to: ###

Drury is an independent University, church related, grounded in the liberal arts tradition and committed to personalized education in a community of scholars who value the arts of teaching and learning. Education at Drury seeks to cultivate spiritual sensibilities and imaginative faculties as well as ethical insight and critical thought; to foster the integration of theoretical and practical knowledge; and to liberate persons to participate responsibly in and contribute to a global community. For more information, visit

For Immediate Release: May 20 Contact: Mark Miller Director of Media Relations, University Communications (417) 873-7390 E-mail:


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