Bryant shares new vision


To most, these two letters mean before Christ. But for FAMU, the term B.C. will have an additional meaning.

Before Castell.

“I’m not here to talk about B.C., I’m here starting from Monday (Jan. 3),” said FAMU interim president Castell Vaughn Bryant, who was named interim president by the Board of Trustees Dec. 14, 2004.

“And B.C. is before Castell.”

Even from her somewhat secluded and lavishly furnished office stylized with fine leather and wood, on the fourth floor of Lee Hall, Bryant can see what many may not be able to – a way for FAMU to move beyond the title of the 1997 Princeton Review College of the Year.

Although Bryant is beginning her second week in office, she is already making strides in one of the school’s most frequently complained about areas, financial aid.

Bryant said a financial aid services firm from Atlanta would be reviewing the University’s financial aid processes and procedures, including customer service.

But today, Bryant described her first four days on campus as busy and exciting. She said she has been busy meeting with various administrators and campus leaders on campus since 8:00 a.m. Jan. 3. and is excited about her opportunity to evoke change at the University.

Bryant met with junior senator and president of the Student

Bryant doesn’t view her status of being a FAMU alumna as a hindrance.

“I’d like to separate what I can accomplish being here as the interim president from me being a FAMU graduate,” said the former President of Miami Dade College’s North Campus.

Bryant also said the diversity of the BOT, which includes a minister, an attorney and several corporate figures is an asset, not a liability. She added that it is important that all the trustees have a shared vision, but that they don’t necessarily have to travel down the same road to get to that vision.

Bryant did make a suggestion on how the BOT and the University should operate.

“I think that one of the things we could do a much better job of is that the Board deal in policy and the University deal in day-to-day administration and none of us cross the line.”

Student Government Association President and Trustee Virgil Miller admitted that Bryant was not his top pick for interim president. However, Miller did say it’s time to move forward.

“We are going to hold Dr. Bryant accountable to make sure what needs to be done, gets done.”

Bryant, who hasn’t been told how long her term will be, said she wanted her legacy as interim president to be nothing more than someone who made a tremendous difference for the University.

Bryant credited her time spent as both a member of the FAMU Board of Trustees and the Board of Governors as an asset to her ability to run the University as interim president.

Bryant said she could draw from her knowledge as a former member of the BOT to refresh her on the uniqueness of this institution. She added that her time on the BOT gives her the adeptness to place the University on par with the other 10 schools in the State University System.

“As the interim president,” Bryant said, “I’m going to make sure we’re at the top of the heap.”

Contact Nick Birdsong at