To open up Bryant University Homecoming Weekend on September 24th, President Ronald Machtley, alongside his wife Kati Machtley, Chairman of the Board of Trustees Bill Contay, U.S. Senator Jack Reed, and Congressman David Cicilline, invited the community to celebrate the grand opening of the Bryant Academic Innovation Center. Hundreds gathered, including alumni, students, faculty, and the Board of Trustees. President Machtley opened by welcoming guests and discussing the importance of this building, not only historically, but also how important it is for the education of our students. He stressed the fundamentals of an innovative style of thinking and how this building encompasses that style and allows our students and staff to dive into that environment. The others who spoke at the ceremony offered similar words, like Senator Jack Reed, who said that this building will transform our students who study there and they will be the ones who change the world in the future. Congressman Cicilline praised Bryant and its transformations, and stated his excitement for our future.
As the speeches concluded, 61 representatives, ranging from trustee members and representatives from contributing organizations, took the honor in cutting the gold ribbon with gold scissors. The ceremony concluded with cheers given by the Bryant Admission staff and their Student Ambassadors. The buzz after the ceremony was amazing. The chatter in the building included all positive feedbacks and eyes dazzling over the building. Many alumni were jealous, but overall happy to see how far Bryant has come.
Besides its beautiful aesthetics and impressive design, the AIC impressed the crowd full of alumni and board of trustee members because it started construction just sixteen short months ago. It was ready for classes at the beginning of the semester. With just five years of planning and every corner planned precisely, Bryant is happy to have the new building for the 2016 semester and for many years to come. The Academic Innovation Center has ten classrooms, including both flat and tear styled, as well as many breakout rooms. All of the furniture can be moved, especially in the main foyer, and almost every wall is made to write on. Similar to the Ideation lab in the Unistructure and the fundamentals from the IDEA program freshman year, this building emulates innovative styles as well as redefines Bryant academics. Faculty and students have been super excited to use this building thus far.
Of course, the inclusion of the Academic Innovation Center cannot be missed, but there are many new features on Bryant’s Campus that shows why Bryant has improved and has impressed the country with its recent ratings. Although you may not have classes in the building, The Archway and the Bryant Staff highly recommend you stop by to check it out and grab some food or coffee from the L’Artisian Café.