Faculty and student hug at Archway
As the Class of 2019 processed across campus, faculty members celebrated their students' successes.
Bryant celebrates its 156th Commencement
May 23, 2019

The Class of 2019 – 1,015 members strong – completed undergraduate or postgraduate studies in the arts and sciences and in business and were awarded a Bryant University degree at Bryant’s 156th Commencement exercises. With degrees that have more value now than at any time in Bryant’s history, the graduates joined a powerful network of more than 50,000 accomplished alumni who are inspired to excel and make a difference as leaders in organizations and communities around the world.

In her May 18th Commencement address, Laura K. Ipsen, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ellucian Company, L.P., an innovative developer of software, cloud applications, and analytics for higher education institutions, shared what she learned about the power of innovation to change the world over the course of her career in technology with the 890 undergraduate members of the Class of 2019.

"You’re entering a world where change is the only constant, where technology is both accelerating and disrupting the future."

“You’re entering a world where change is the only constant, where technology is both accelerating and disrupting the future,” said Ipsen. “Charting your course in this digital age for any occupation will require both human and artificial intelligence. The future of jobs will be a world of people and machines working together…. Technology should inform our human intuition and inspire us to explore all the possibilities ahead – and give us a fighting chance to make the right decisions about them.”

In recognition of her 25 years as a technology leader in Silicon Valley, Ipsen received an honorary Doctor of Business Administration degree during the ceremony.

The University awarded two other honorary degrees during the undergraduate Commencement:

  • Known for his innovative ideas about the work of judging and for his focus on fundamental fairness, William E. Smith, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island, received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.
  • Nicole Alexander-Scott, MD, MPH, Director of the Rhode Island Department of Health, who is admired as a true inspiration to those working in public health and is the first African-American to serve as Rhode Island’s top health official, received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.

On Thursday, May 16, Edward “Ned” O. Handy III, a leader in the New England banking industry and Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer of Washington Trust Bancorp, Inc., addressed 125 graduate students and their families at the Graduate Programs Commencement. He received an honorary Doctor of Business Administration degree.

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