April 29, 2020
First and foremost, we hope that you and your family are safe and well during this time.
Across every facet of the University for many weeks now, Bryant’s faculty, staff, and students have been rising to meet the challenges of the Coronavirus. Our entire community has worked together with the utmost dedication, at every turn taking proactive steps that have allowed us to continue our educational mission while keeping our students, faculty, and staff safe.
On March 10, Bryant was one of the first schools in the region to announce transition of our residential campus. As the pandemic evolved in March and April, we were able to reimagine and continue the signature Bryant experience in a new virtual environment. Our dedicated faculty devoted their spring break to working with Bryant’s IT team and other staff to convert their on-campus courses to remote online learning, administrative offices never skipped a beat with staff working from home, and we used innovation and ingenuity to develop virtual events that brought the Bryant family together. We learned new skills that will prepare us for the rapidly changing world in which we now live and have been enormously proud of the way everyone has adapted to the many challenges COVID-19 has presented.
While the experience has not been the same as being on our beautiful campus, it has been a teachable moment to develop new approaches and brought us together in news ways. As we end our spring term classes on May 1, our focus turns increasingly to planning for the fall semester.
After carefully considering plans announced this week by our government officials and medical experts, and with extensive review among our entire leadership team, we can affirm our intent to deliver the 2020 fall term on campus.
The transformational Bryant experience, which produces student learning outcomes and employment success rates among the very best in the country, is based on a 24/7 learning environment. It is on our pristine campus that students thrive the most, hone skills and build credentials that distinguish them long into the future, and forge powerful connections that will last a lifetime.
We will allow students to return to campus for a residential experience when we are confident that it is safe for them and for all members of our community. Our expectation is that we will all be facing a “new normal” and that special accommodations will be needed in our near-term future, but we will handle it with our signature Bulldog spirit and a meticulous attention to health and safety. We are already developing the policies and procedures that must be in place for this safe reopening and we will share details on these in the weeks and months ahead.
We are fortunate and grateful for our unmatched 435-acre campus and small classes. As you know, Bryant has no large lecture halls and there is a single, secured entrance to campus. We are well-positioned to adopt strategies for safe social distancing that will protect our community.
Bryant’s distinguished 157-year history has proven our ability to continuously innovate to meet the challenges of industry and society. That core DNA has made us strong and resilient. We have every confidence that together we will provide an exceptional learning experience and our hallmark academic excellence this fall.
We look forward to welcoming you to campus as soon as possible. When you arrive, be assured that our faculty will be ready, our staff will be eager to greet you and help you settle in, and that the landscape will be lush and will provide a perfect setting for study and personal growth.
Bryant University President Ronald K. Machtley
Incoming Bryant President Ross Gittell, Ph.D.