Academic Innovation Center

Bryant University

Smithfield, RI

Academic Innovation Higher Education

Innovation Forum in the new Bryant University Classroom Building

Organized around an immersive activity hub, the inventive facility is fostering a transformation in how students learn, and how the University  works with the business world. The AIC has measurably increased student engagement, energized the faculty, and attracted businesses to create opportunities for students to learn critical thinking skills and successfully transition into the workforce upon graduation.

Building Facts

  • 50,000 GSF
  • Innovation forum
  • 5 Tiered Classrooms
  • 5 Flat Classrooms
  • 1 Divisible Classroom
  • 23 Breakout rooms
  • Admission presentation room
  • Cafe

Awards & Honors

  1. Grand Prize, Architectural Design

    College Planning & Management

  2. Illumination Award for Interior Lighting Design

    Illuminating Engineering Society (IES)

  3. Illumination Award for Energy and Environmental Lighting Design

    Illuminating Engineering Society (IES)

  4. Honorable Mention Award

    Learning by Design Magazine

Exterior View

Activate Your Business Community

Bryant’s entrepreneurial approach is changing how Industry views and relates to Higher Education. The Design Thinking class attracts businesses to campus, creating opportunities for students to practice on real-world challenges – an experience that positions them for success after graduation.

Academic Innovation Center

Activate Your Faculty

In exploring new ways of teaching students outside-the-box thinking and active problem-solving skills, Bryant faculty are showing students how cross-disciplinary Design Thinking enables innovation. University grants help these pedagogical projects go from ideas to practice.

Innovative Teaching

See how Sociology Professor Sandra Enos teaches "Community Engagement and Service Learning" in the Ideation Lab.


Faculty are energized by the classrooms in the AIC. I have witnessed the enthusiasm of new pedagogy, new delivery, and almost a “re-awakening” to the calling of teaching. It has been transformational...

Glenn Sulmasy Provost and Chief Academic Officer, Bryant University
students working

Activate Your Students

Flexible, tech-infused environments bring people together, inspiring curiosity and collaboration to promote hands-on discovery. Bryant University’s Academic Innovation Center is helping students in the IDEA program experience the power of Design Thinking.

Innovation Collaborative Space

In Their Own Words

Bryant’s IDEA Program is a 3-day intensive workshop that focuses on team-based activities and how to use the creative process to address a real-world problem in business or the community.


If everyone is contributing, the more likely we are to find an idea that just might change the world.

Courtney M. '16 Bryant University

Design that Fosters Innovation

Bryant University President Ronald K. Machtley and Lead Designer Kip Ellis explain how the trailblazing facility activates effective, results-oriented collaboration and innovation.

Innovation Collaborative Space

Building Bryant's Innovative Academic Future

The Lead Designer discusses inspiration and design strategies for creating the loft-style Design Thinking environment that blurs boundaries to generate opportunities.

Advancing Mission

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