Giving Bryant a Better Tomorrow
Every November they gather around the table. Not with aunts and uncles, but with longtime friends committed to making room for each other in busy holiday-season schedules. Over the course of 30 years these gatherings of single young professionals grew to include boyfriends and girlfriends, then spouses, and then children. The thing that drew them all together year after year was their shared connection to Bryant.
Eric J. Bisighini III '80 and his wife, Lynn (Donnelly) Bisighini '81 find a variety of ways to remain connected to the Bryant community—in their social lives, at alumni events, as benefactors to current students, and now as members of the 1863 Society.
"I have returned to Bryant many times over the years," Eric says, "usually to attend alumni weekend or a Phi Epsilon Pi fraternity reunion. One of my Phi Ep brothers started a tradition of having an early Thanksgiving celebration each year at his home. Now, 30 years later it is again just the couples, with the occasional guest. And many great memories."
As students, Lynn and Eric each earned a BS in accounting. Both studied under Mickey Perlow, a standout professor of accounting in the late '70s. True to the Bryant experience, Perlow was more than just a professor. "I can still remember Mickey taking half-court basketball shots during pick-up games after class," says Eric. "But what I remember most was how he would always encourage students to look at accounting careers outside of the traditional Big 8 (now Big 4) accounting firms. His words of encouragement led me to a successful career in the insurance tax area that has continued to today."
Eric added two master's degrees and is now director of tax for Prudential Financial. Lynn has led a distinguished career including tenures at Ernst & Young and the Connecticut Department of Revenue Services, and is today president of the consulting firm, Sales Tax Professionals.
The Bisighinis have worked hard to make sure others have the opportunity to build such lasting relationships and launch successful careers. "We have chosen to give back to Bryant in many ways," Eric explains. "We have contributed annually to an endowed scholarship for a suitemate of Lynn's who passed away after a courageous battle with cancer. More recently we have joined the 1863 Society by naming Bryant University in our will. Although we hope that Bryant will need to wait a number of years before receiving our bequest, we were pleased to learn that these estate gifts can support Bryant's capital campaign today and provide financial benefit in the future."
"I encourage others to consider joining the 1863 Society," Eric says. "It is easy and it can help Bryant grow for a better tomorrow."