Published 05/13/15

Bryant announces historic building program

SMITHFIELD, R.I. – On Friday, May 15, Bryant University will hold groundbreaking ceremonies for Bryant Builds, the University's largest and most transformative facilities initiative since Bryant’s move from Providence to Smithfield 45 years ago. In the next year, Bryant will create a new campus entrance and point of arrival, and add more than 250,000 square feet both at the Smithfield campus and in Zhuhai, China.

"We are enhancing our academic and athletic facilities to become best in class."

The dramatic new facilities for the next generation of innovative leaders are made possible by more than $15 million in leadership gifts to Bryant’s capital campaign, Expanding the World of Opportunity: The Campaign for Bryant’s Bold Future. Bryant has already raised more than $46 million toward the $75-million campaign goal, the largest fundraising effort in the University’s history. Under the leadership of University President Ronald K. Machtley, beginning his 20 th year at Bryant, the historic Bryant Builds initiatives include:

  • A new entrance, integrated landscape, and point of arrival designed to enhance access to facilities on Bryant’s 435-acre contemporary campus;
  • A 50,000-square-foot Academic Innovation Center, where innovative learning will be fostered in a creative  environment designed for a new generation of pedagogy in both Bryant’s College of Business and College of Arts and Sciences. Funded by donations from alumni, including a lead gift of $5 million from an individual family, the landmark Center will open in fall 2016;
  • A Bulldog Strength and Conditioning Center, scheduled to be completed in summer 2015, to benefit the student-athletes on Bryant’s 22 NCAA Division I teams. This project has received more than $5 million in philanthropic support from Bryant alumni;
  • A 78,000-squre-foot Indoor Practice Facility featuring a state-of-the-art indoor turf field with a full 100 yards of turf. When the facility is completed, Bryant will become the only private DI school in New England with a similar facility. Support for this project includes a $2 million gift from William J. Conaty ’67, Chair of the Bryant University Board of Trustees;
  • Enhancements to the Elizabeth and Malcolm Chace Wellness and Athletic Center, including a Sports Medicine and Training Center;
  • Bryant University Zhuhai, a joint venture with Beijing Institute of Technology Zhuhai campus. Bryant’s Chinese partners have invested 100 percent of the capital for this project.

Innovation is "a central theme in architecture and pedagogy."

“With the transformative Bryant Builds plan, we are creating the world-class learning environment that aligns with Bryant’s bold future. We are enhancing our academic and athletic facilities to become best in class, with innovation as a central theme in architecture and pedagogy,” said Machtley.

“Bryant’s distinctive 24/7 learning environment, combining innovative academic and student life programs in an award-winning setting, builds the skills and increases the confidence of our students,” Machtley said, “so that they graduate ready to make immediate contributions as leaders working in a global context. Our graduates are succeeding in every respect.”

Among the nation's best academic programs

For more than 150 years, Bryant has been at the forefront of education that anticipates the future in a changing world, preparing students so that they are ready to achieve success in their lives and chosen professions. Today, the University delivers a nationally recognized immersive curriculum that integrates business and the liberal arts, and the university’s innovative academic programs are consistently ranked among the best in the country:

The full scope of Bryant’s international programs includes the unique Sophomore International Experience for undergraduates and a Global Immersion Experience for graduate students in the Graduate School of Business, an undergraduate concentration in Global Supply Chain Management, and MBA concentrations in Global Finance, Global Supply Chain Management, and International Business. Nearly 50 percent of Bryant students study abroad.

Launched in September 2014, Expanding the World of Opportunity: The Campaign for Bryant’s Bold Future outlines Bryant's determination to do what it does even better and to take on an ever more active role in the organizations and economies of the world.

A period of academic and athletic growth

During the last decade Bryant has introduced a number of innovations and significant enhancements that have transformed the institution. Bryant established its College of Business and College of Arts and Sciences and transitioned from college to university in 2004, completed full transition to NCAA Division I athletics in 2013, and established a School of Health Sciences and its first clinical program — the Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies — in 2014.

This is an unprecedented period in the history of Bryant athletics. Bryant’s Bulldog student-athletes compete against some of the nation’s top champions and earn record-breaking victories as well as top grades. Based on fall 2014 grade analysis, Bryant's student-athletes had an average GPA of 3.02, with approximately 40 percent earning Deans List Honors (3.2). The Bulldogs' spring 2015 season promises to be as outstanding as 2014, which produced an unheard of six Northeast Conference Championships and allowed the Bulldogs to capture their first-ever Commissioner's Cup as the top sports program in the Northeast Conference. National recognition for the strength of Bryant’s Division I athletics program includes a recent segment on CBS Television's "60 Minutes."

The University has added 267,000 square feet in facilities and invested more than $250 million in facilities and technology during Machtley's tenure. This year marks the 20th year for President Machtley and his wife, Kati C. Machtley, who serves as director of the Bryant University Women’s Summit, one of the most highly sought-after conferences in New England.