Published 10/15/13

Reunion @ Homecoming celebrates tradition of connecting

From the very beginning of Bryant University’s history, Ezra Mason, part-owner of the college, made sure graduates remained connected by starting the “What Cheer Lyceum” club , through which graduates and current students met to hear lectures and discuss current events. 

These days, the tradition lives on in Reunion @ Homecoming, held Oct. 11-12 this year on the Bryant campus.

"The Fisher Student Center is one more example of how Bryant has consistently found a way to combine cutting-edge design with functionality."

Throughout the two-day gathering, many alumni took the opportunity to reacquaint themselves with a campus that has grown and transformed since their student days. One hot activity: tours of the newly renovated Fisher Student Center , named in honor of Mike ’67 and Karen Fisher.

“When I first arrived at Bryant nearly 30 years ago, I was struck by the beauty of the Rotunda,” said Tony Cohutt ’88 (Saco, ME).  “The Fisher Student Center is one more example of how Bryant has consistently found a way to combine cutting-edge design with functionality on campus.  I was very impressed.”

“Even though a lot has changed, I noticed that the feel of the campus did not change, which I liked,” noted Heather (Chase) Ignazewski  ’88 (Amherst, NH). “The Koffler Center was a big change ... from a bar, restaurant and bowling alley to a video production/radio station building.  I was also impressed with the technology that is in place to support the Communications major.”

Highlights of Reunion @ Homecoming

  • The annual Alumni Reunion Golf Outing and the Rob McGee ’88 Memorial Golf Outing provided opportunities for alumni to hit the links at Crystal Lake Golf Club in nearby Burrillville, RI.
  • The Department of Athletics inducted 10 alumni into the Bryant Athletics Hall of Fame: Nick Allegretti ’04 (lacrosse), Maureen Burns ’06 (field hockey/lacrosse), Bill Conaty ’67 (baseball), Casey Grange ’07 (soccer), Michelle Lewis ’05 (field hockey/lacrosse), Mary McConnell ’04 (basketball), Michelle Muniz ’05 (volleyball), Lorenzo Perry ’07 (football), Charlie Granatell ’08 (football), and Sacha Soloman ’07 (tennis).
  • More than 50 Bryant alumni from the Classes of 1938 to 2004 attended the Loyal Guard Luncheon and Induction Ceremony for the Class of 1963.
  • On October 12, President and Mrs. Ronald K. Machtley hosted a black-tie Sesquicentennial Gala at Rosecliff mansion in Newport, RI. This anniversary presented a singular opportunity to recognize Bryant’s distinguished 150-year history and support the Presidential Scholarship Fund.
  • The Class of 2008 Class gift dedication . At the five-year mark, the University celebrates the Senior Class Gift, which was restoration of the iconic Archway. Bryant’s Archway remains the only tangible piece of Bryant’s East Side campus. Exposure to the harsh New England winters over many years had left the Archway in need of repair. DeAngelis Iron Work in Easton, MA, disassembled and moved the Archway to its shop shortly after Commencement in 2008.
  • The Bryant University Bulldogs took on the Brown University Bears, which highlighted a rivalry Bryant shared with Brown when the schools were neighbors on the East Side. Though the first quarter was more evenly matched, the Bears had the upper hand and took the victory, 41-14.
  • The 150 th Anniversary Celebration in the Alumni Tent featured a live band and a lobster bake. Though an initial butter shortage created a brief panic, Sodexo, Bryant’s food service company, stepped up to the plate and hit a home run with “excellent chow,” according to an alumnus.