Rice University Top Questions

What is your overall opinion of this school?


One thing that I like about Rice is that most people seem really happy. It might be because of the mostly-sunny weather and friendly atmosphere. Another thing that I really like is the non-competitive atmosphere. I have never met anyone who studies to "beat the curve" and everyone collaborates on problem sets. The Residential College System makes it very easy to make a good number of friends easily, and you have many acquaintances. Our small size is also a big plus. I really like it that between most of my classes I see one or two of my friends.


Best thing: great education, prestigious, well-known by graduate schools One think I'd change: Give more scholarship money to middle-class students School size: Just right Reactions when I tell people I go to Rice: awe, surprise Most time spent: dormitory "What college town?" Rice's administration: No opinion Biggest controversy: Can't think of it right now School pride: Yes, we have pride. Unusual: Story about Willy's statue Memorable experience: Bill Clinton's visit Frequent student complaints: Sometimes the food in the serveries isn't so great.


Best thing about Rice- The College system. There is nothing better for meeting people, building community, and loving your school. Rice is a great size- big enough not to know everyone or feel suffocatingly small but still small enough (especailly the colleges) to have a real closeness. People in Texas especially react very positively if I say I go to Rice, but sometimes people from other parts of the country do not know it well. I spend almost all of my time on campus, I love campus and there is so much to do. Houston is fun too though- lots of good food! And lastly the big controversy on campus currently is all of the construction- but it is for the best in the future so I guess we can all put up with it.


Get out of the hedges and off campus, Rice students. Houston may be polluted, sticky, and generally environmentally unpleasant, but there is more inspiration in the city than in Rice classrooms alone. You can walk to museums and take free light rail rides to clubs and professional sports games around town, and too few students do it. More and more classes are working to integrate Houston's assets into academia (Chemistry of Art, for example, is team-taught with curators from the Museum of Fine Arts), and the new president, Leebron, is big on integrating Rice into the Houston community and vice versa. But it is way too easy to live on campus all four years, never have a car, rarely leave the library or the lab, and walk away from Rice with no idea how to pay an electric bill or budget for groceries. The school's getting bigger, more rapidly than new on-campus housing is being built, so hopefully the Rice bubble will burst for more students soon, but I worry about my peers coming out of their undergraduate experience with few to no life skills whatsoever. Tuition's going up, and there's a lot of controversy about whether this will damage Rice's unique identity as a scoop for lower-to-mid-middle-class students: the ones who don't qualify for financial aid, but who can't go yachting every weekend in the Hamptons. And yeah, it probably will hurt this identity. But the expanding undergraduate population and Rice's promise to meet the financial needs of its students may help Rice to find a new identity. We're not an Ivy, and we're proud of that fact. People here worry that Leebron is trying to make us an Ivy. He's not. But he is changing the face of Rice, and he is trying to make the Rice name more recognizable both outside Texas and outside the United States at large. If anything, we're headed for a reputation like a Stanford or a Carnegie-Mellon: Elite, private, and decidedly less pretentious than a Yale or a Harvard. Plus, we actually have professors, not grad students, teaching our classes.


Best thing = community.