Matthew Barnett ’19 likes to explore. Since coming to Bryant he’s traveled to China and driven 10,000 miles across the United States, interviewing innovative thinkers and entrepreneurs.
Barnett believes in the value of keeping an open mind, which is why he entered Bryant as an undecided student. Knowing that Bryant students have two years to declare a major, Barnett took full advantage of all that time, enrolling in a variety of classes that piqued his interest in the College of Arts and Sciences and College of Business.
Now a Marketing and Applied Analytics major, Barnett credits that exploratory period with helping him discover new interests and passions. “It’s important to keep an open mind, especially when coming to college, because you don’t really know where your path is going to take you.”
Along the way, Barnett also joined organizations, like Bryant Ventures, that foster his naturally entrepreneurial spirit. “Learning is a lifelong thing. You don’t have to just study one thing in college. A lot of your learning is going to happen outside of the classroom, applying knowledge you already have to the real world.”
Barnett is looking forward to working with first-year students as an IDEA mentor and introducing them to design thinking. “I think a lot of people can get stuck in their ways and in their thinking, and I want people to try to push the boundaries on how they think.” Ultimately, he says, “I’m excited to see what they come up with as new ideas for problems using design thinking skills. I’m excited to be in that environment again.”
His advice for undecided students is simple – be true to yourself and opportunities will follow. “Be yourself and you’ll find your community. You’ll find your group of people.”
- Working with first-year students and Bryant Zhuhai students taking part in Innovation and Design Experience (IDEA) Program
- Honors Program mentor
- Member of Omicron Delta Kappa, the national leadership honor society
- Recipient of Goss Prize in Entrepreneurship. With the prize, he and fellow student Jeremy Wilder ’19 spent six weeks traveling the United States to interview some of the country’s most innovative entrepreneurs in twelve major cities to learn about their success and methods.
- Participated in a Sophomore International Experience that focused on China
- Directs weekly tours for prospective students and their families, acting as a resource for information about the University
- As Visit Team Leader, welcomes guests to campus and assists with their check-in process
- Hosts variety show on WJMF Radio
- As a member of Bryant Ventures, he learned the skills necessary to start a small business by working with and learning alongside other entrepreneurial students and faculty mentors
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