Incoming President Dr. Ross Gittell, Ph.D., today sent the following message to the Bryant community:
Dear Bryant Students, Faculty, Staff, and Alumni,
The challenges of a university presidential transition, while simultaneously planning for the safe reopening of our campus during a pandemic, are significant. The Coronavirus pandemic has impacted almost every facet of our lives and presents unprecedented challenges for higher education.
The past few months have been very difficult for our nation. Some of the most vulnerable communities already facing many embedded challenges have been the most negatively impacted by COVID-19. The recent tragedies involving Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Rayshard Brooks have motivated passionate calls for change. Many Bryant community members including faculty, staff, students, and alumni have reached out to express concerns and offer suggestions for how Bryant can be part of the change that helps to improve the future for our nation, and for Bryant’s students and alumni. I hear your concerns and recommendations to help make Bryant an even stronger community and they are important.
I am committed to providing opportunities for constructive dialogue that will lead to positive and purposeful action. Towards these ends, we will have multiple ways for all of our community stakeholders to share perspectives and provide input. To begin, next Tuesday, June 23rd, I will engage in a conversation led by students and facilitated by faculty member Dr. Laura Beaudin. The goal of this first conversation with a small group is for community concerns to be shared directly with me. Following this initial conversation, we will be scheduling other conversations and I will meet with university leadership to discuss coordinated initiatives for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. An initial framework for the coordinated efforts will be developed, discussed and refined with the campus community starting once I take office as Bryant University President in July.
It is important that we take a community approach. Thank you to everyone who has shared concerns and demonstrated a passion for our students and continuous improvement of our learning and caring community.
Dr. Ross Gittell, Ph.D.