Skip to Main Content

A Message from the Chair of the Board of Trustees

To the Bay Path University Community:

Patricia Pierce, Chair, Board of Trustees, Bay Path University
Patricia J. Pierce, Chair, Board of Trustees

Daffodils, tulips, and forsythia blossoms herald Spring in New England. On the Bay Path campuses it is a time when our students take advantage of warm days to study or relax outside. It is their time to look ahead to final exams, commencement, and plans for the summer. This spring at Bay Path is also highlighted by Dr. Leary’s announcement of her retirement plans. So, this spring is a time for reflection on the school’s success and for appreciation of her dedicated and talented leadership. The entire Bay Path community will look forward to celebrating Dr. Leary’s accomplishments over the next year.

Carol has shared with me her memories of Bay Path College in 1994 when she took the helm. The comparison with Bay Path University in 2019 is dramatic. In 1994 there were under 450 students and undergraduate programs exclusively. Today the school has 3,400 students and offers undergraduate, masters, and doctorate degrees. In 2014 and 2015 The Chronicle of Higher Education named Bay Path as one of the 20 fastest growing baccalaureate colleges in America; in 2017 and 2018 the school was listed among the fastest-growing “private nonprofit master’s institutions.” The school’s growth is even more remarkable given its consistently strong commitment to serving women of all ages.

Through a series of strategic plans (named “Visions”) Bay Path has benefited from Dr. Leary’s innovative and entrepreneurial leadership. Just a few of the landmarks achieved are the introduction of the One Day A Week Saturday Program for adult women in 1999, the offering of the first graduate degree in 2001, the 2013 launch of The American Women’s College which offers a first-in-the-nation online baccalaureate program geared for women, achievement of University status in 2014, and the first offering of a doctoral program in 2017.

We Trustees know Carol as a strong, energetic leader who has assembled an outstanding administrative team. We regard her with the highest respect. The local community and national organizations have applauded her talent as well. Carol’s work in higher education has been recognized in numerous awards and leadership positions. This year she received the Donna Shavlik Award from the American Council on Education. One of our Trustees termed this award “The Oscar” of higher ed. In addition, Carol currently serves as the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Association of American Colleges and Universities.

Dr. Leary & Noel Leary with students on the 2016 Capitals of the World Trip
Dr. Carol and Noel Leary are pictured here with participants on our 2016 Capitals of the World trip to Amsterdam.

Carol and her husband, Noel, have positively influenced myriad students’ lives. As mentors and sometime traveling companions they have coached and inspired Bay Path students to seek challenging opportunities and to achieve higher goals. The Learys’ devotion to the education and well being of women is the fabric of their lives. We thank them for their uniquely personal commitment and contributions.

The Board of Trustees is prepared to conduct the search for the next President of Bay Path University. We shall utilize a search firm and will establish a Search Committee. Updates on our progress will be forthcoming. In the interim we hope that you will join us in congratulating Carol on her retirement plans and thanking her for a remarkable tenure of 25 years as President of Bay Path University.

Patricia J. Pierce, Board Chair,
April 8, 2019