Residential Colleges: An Inclusive Campus Culture
Rice's residential college system is the heart of campus life. Every Rice student is a member of a residential college, regardless of the choice to live on or off campus. These 11 colleges are small communities in which you will live, dine and interact with faculty, staff and alumni.
Before you arrive in the fall, you'll be assigned at random to one of our 11 residential colleges — and you'll remain a member of that college as long as you stay at Rice. Each college is run largely by students, and each has its own budget and student government. Your college
is the source of social events, from parties to intramural sports, but it also offers the academic enrichment of lectures and special courses designed by fellow students.
A Tradition of Student Self-Governance
Student leadership is integral to life at Rice. Each residential college maintains its own student-run government and manages a budget for supporting social events, resources, facilities, and entertainment both on and off campus. Each college elects approximately 30 members to serve on the college's cabinet and to act as representatives to the
Student Association, the
Rice Program Council and the
Honor Council. The elected student leaders of each college also organize Orientation Week (O-Week) for new students, provide peer leadership for academic and social concerns, and serve on universitywide governance and social programming groups.
Your Mentors: College Masters, Resident Associates, College Coordinators and College Associates
College Masters are tenured faculty members who live with their families in houses adjacent to each college. Masters are a supportive resource for students and oversee all aspects of student life. They encourage broad cultural and intellectual pursuits, ensure the effectiveness
of the college's self-governance, and care for their students' well-being. College masters serve as advisors and confidants; promote responsible student government; encourage student-faculty interaction in the college through cultural and educational programs, social events, and other activities; and help students understand the university's broad curriculum and vast experiential learning opportunities.
Resident Associates (RAs) are graduate students or staff members who live in an apartment located in the residence hall at their respective college. RAs are there to offer guidance about life at Rice and lend support to students. They are knowledgeable about university policies, curriculum, and student-life opportunities. RAs also lead study and snack breaks, eat their meals in the college commons with students, and attend college meetings and functions.
College Coordinators are staff members who serve as daytime contacts for students. They typically keep a 9 a.m.-5 p.m. work schedule and their duties include managing the college's office budget, notifying students about academic deadlines, sorting the mail, and acting as the primary contact between the residential colleges and other university offices. The college coordinator's office is the nerve center of the college, a main meeting place where students stop by to chat and get answers to questions on everything from how to replace a room key or when to meet important deadlines.
College Associates are Rice staff members, alumni and Houston residents who either volunteer or are selected by the colleges to participate in college activities, lectures and discussions and share their experience and interests with the students. Associates often dine with students in the college commons, host events at their homes, bring snacks to college study breaks, coach or play on college sports teams, appear in college-produced plays and lead field trips to places throughout Houston. They offer insights about living in Houston, such as recommending restaurants, shops and entertainment options.