Rice University: Houston Could be Your New Home
By Adriana De Santiago
Midwestern weather can be warm, cold, rainy and anywhere in between. If you are trying to get away from the unpredictable, Houston is warm year-round and is home to the prestigious Rice University, a mid-size private research university. With a population of 2.3 million, the city is comparable in size to Chicago’s 2.7 million.
Rice University’s undergraduate enrollment size is 4,000 students and with an acceptance rate of 15%, it is a highly selective institution. The male-female ratio is 53-47. The student-teacher ratio is 6-1. About 75% of undergraduate students live on campus; on-campus living is guaranteed for freshman and sophomores. Rice has 11 residential colleges with various traditions and customs at each. Students might be surprised to hear that Rice does not have greek life, but the residential college system alone is a family as students would describe it.
The cost of attendance is $61,000 but with the new Rice Investment, the university is attempting to make education more affordable for students. Currently around 38% of students receive financial aid. With an endowment of $5.8 billion, Rice will cover fees, tuition, and room and board for families earning under $60,000 and full tuition for families earning under $130,000. Families earning up to $200,000 are still eligible to receive half tuition. To be considered for financial aid, students must complete both the FAFSA and CSS profile.
Although Rice is a smaller research institution, it is a part of the NCAA Division I USA conference. Other schools in this conference include the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Florida International University, and Louisiana Tech University. Sports are not very popular at Rice but students can join club and intramural sports. The residential colleges have games against each other as well.
Research opportunities at Rice are vast, both within the university and in Houston. Three resources within the university include the Baker Institute for Public Policy, Bioscience Research Collaborative, and the Kinder Institute for Urban Research. The Bioscience Research Collaborative is where scientists and faculty from Rice work with other Texas Medical Center institutions to develop their understanding of medicine and health research. These are just some of the opportunities available to students.
Some of the most popular majors at Rice are Computer and Information Sciences, Kinesiology, Biochemistry, Mechanical Engineering, Chemistry, and Chemical Engineering. The university has six colleges: Weiss School of Natural Sciences, School of Social Sciences, The Shepherd School of Music, School of Humanities, the George R. Brown School of Engineering, and the School of Architecture. Rice’s undergraduate program is currently ranked second in the nation according to new DesignIntelligence rankings, as reported by Architectural Record. The graduate program is currently ranked seventh in the nation. In addition to having numerous academic opportunities, students are able to study abroad after their freshman year. There is an application process students must complete, but there are many different programs around the globe.
After a long day in classes, students can explore all that Houston has to offer. A few minutes from campus is the Houston Zoo and the Texas Medical Center. Many pre-medical students seek opportunities at the Texas Medical Center during the school year and others during the summer. Many Rice students also enjoy going to The Teahouse Tapioca and Tea.Home to the Houston Rockets, the Astros, and the Houston Dynamo, Houston does not lack sporting events.
If you are looking for a mid-size university in a large city, Rice might be worth looking into. They have two decision plans, Early Decision and Regular Decision. Rice is also a Questbridge Partner.
4,000 undergraduate students
53% to 47% male to female
6:1 student to teacher ratio
$61,000 is the cost
38% receive financial aid
Endowment of 15.8 billion
Houston, Texas (urban)
15% acceptance rate
93% graduation rate