Through our six divisions of study, students find a rigorous curriculum designed to challenge them and prepare them to be leaders across the spectrum of human endeavor.
The Rice School of Architecture, ranked No. 3 among the nation's top Bachelor of Architecture programs by DesignIntelligence, combines an international scope with an intentionally small and intimate setting. The school maintains a diverse enrollment of about 125 undergraduates and 60 graduate students representing many states and nationalities. The core faculty's 20 architects, historians and theoreticians are complemented each year by visiting critics, scholars and lecturers, transforming the school into a think tank that explores the challenges and possibilities of contemporary architecture and urbanism.
The undergraduate program in architecture leads to a fully accredited Bachelor of Architecture professional degree. A truly unique feature of this program is a yearlong internship, called the Preceptorship Program, in which the school arranges for each student to work in one of the top design firms in the world. Recent offices have included Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Rogers Partners Architects, SHoP, and Thomas Phifer in NYC, the Renzo Piano Building Workshop in Paris and Genoa, Kohn Pederson Fox in London, JohnstonMarklee in L.A., and OMA Hong Kong, among others.
In addition to formal coursework, architecture students can explore a rich program of all-school lectures, public symposia, exhibits, studio reviews, design-and-build opportunities and community outreach. Additionally, students can apply to take a full semester of study at the school's Paris program or apply for traveling fellowships.
Our students come from many different countries and from every corner of the U.S., mirroring the diversity of the faculty and visiting professors. We
are committed to architecture's public role and its potential to improve our shared environment. The School of Architecture operates on a global stage
and is located in one of the fastest growing and most dynamic cities in the United States. Our think-tank atmosphere uniquely integrates individualized instruction with exposure to the best architects and thinkers in the world. We prepare our graduates to become transformative figures in the field.
Engineering at Rice has long been known for the rigorous grounding its students get in science, math and computing, the basis of all engineering. But engineering at its best is a creative process and at Rice, student creativity is sparked by challenging research, real-world design problems, international experiences and opportunities in leadership development.
Seventy percent of engineering undergraduates participate in research by the time they graduate,
working with faculty who are internationally recognized as leaders in their fields. Thirteen engineering faculty are members of the U.S. national academies and 26 of our younger faculty are winners of prestigious National Science Foundation CAREER Awards. Design is driven by real-world problems, many of them posed by practitioners in the Texas Medical Center and local industries. Students work on these projects in the state-of-the-art Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen. International programs, such as Engineers Without Borders and Beyond Traditional Borders, enable students to make a difference in peoples' lives by applying their engineering knowledge and skills. Research and internship programs like NanoJapan expand the types of experiences available to students beyond traditional
study abroad. The activities of the Rice Center for Engineering Leadership enhance the technical education our students receive with innovative programs in leadership training and practice, communication skills development, entrepreneurship and teamwork.
Rice's School of Humanities offers the essentials that broaden a mind and round out a life: literature and history, art and philosophy, religious studies and 12 languages. You'll have abundant access to opportunities in undergraduate research, internships, and study abroad. Plus, perhaps most importantly, humanities students benefit from the resources and collaborative energy of talented and award-winning faculty in 10 academic
departments and three research centers. Beyond Rice's student literary journal, silver-screen cinema, dramatic arts theater, renowned installation art gallery and student-run exhibition space, our invaluable relations with universities abroad inspire and expand the intellectual development of our students.
Recent faculty distinctions include the Phi Beta Kappa Teaching Prize, Mellon Foundation New Directions Fellowship, Guggenheim fellowships, a
Yaddo artist's residency, top prize in the Webb-Smith Essay and Iowa Poetry competitions, and one of three finalists for the national Robert Foster Cherry
Award for Great Teaching. Further, the Faculty Scholarly Productivity Index (which measures achievement in areas such as publications, grants and awards) ranks the school's history, religious studies and philosophy programs among the top 10 in the nation.
As a humanities major, you won't be limited by the definition of your discipline. The resources available to Rice undergraduates help foster cooperation and scholarship at every level, not only between the humanities and other areas of the university, but between Rice scholars and the rest of the world.
The Shepherd School of Music is one of the nation's most prestigious major university-level music programs. The school has attracted an international body of students who take applied music lessons and core music courses from some of the most accomplished faculty in the nation. The approximately 280 undergraduate and graduate students
perform together in ensembles to ensure that they learn from each other while also maintaining the highest level of musical excellence. Chamber music, studio classes, choral ensembles and orchestra concerts give students additional performance opportunities.
Among its accolades is that the Shepherd School is one of the original music schools selected by the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts to participate in its prominent Conservatory Project.
The Conservatory Project is designed to feature the top young musical artists who are studying at the nation's leading undergraduate and graduate conservatories, colleges and universities.
Music majors also benefit from their connection to Rice alumni who have set the stage for success. They hold positions in the Metropolitan Opera Lindemann Young Artist Program, the Houston Grand Opera Studio, the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program, the Utah Opera Ensemble Program, the Seattle Opera Young Artist Program, the National Symphony Orchestra, as well as the Houston Symphony Orchestra. The Shepherd
School's renowned string quartet residency program has helped launch the careers of award-winning ensembles such as the Dover Quartet, Jasper Quartet and the Enso Quartet. Caroline Shaw '04 became the youngest person ever to win a Pulitzer Prize in music for her composition "Partita for 8 Voices." Sasha Cooke '04 received a Grammy Award for Best Opera Recording for her performance as Kitty Oppenheimer in the Metropolitan Opera Premiere of John Adams' "Doctor Atomic." Double bass-player Thomas Van Dyck '03 was selected from among 250 musicians for his spot in the nine-member bass section of the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
Designed by the internationally celebrated Spanish architect Ricardo Bofill, The Shepherd School is located in Alice Pratt Brown Hall, a $22 million facility that houses practice spaces, chamber music rooms, and recording and faculty studios. The hall also boasts three of Houston's finest performing spaces, which feature outstanding acoustics and
attract audiences of more than 70,000 music lovers each year.
The Wiess School of Natural Sciences educates and inspires new generations of scientific leaders. To do so, it offers a first-rate
faculty, state-of-the-art facilities, innovative research and education programs, and a commitment to excellence in all things. That commitment was honored in 1996 when two professors in the school won the Nobel Prize in chemistry for their pioneering work in the field of nanotechnology. Today, the many distinctions among the 127 full-time faculty include Packard Fellowships, NSF CAREER Awards, American Geophysical Union Fellowships, Sloan Foundation Fellowships, National Academy of Science Members
and a Small Times Magazine Innovator of the Year award.
The school comprises six academic departments and is affiliated with twelve institutes and centers, including the Richard E. Smalley Institute for Nanoscale Science and Technology, which has generated 12 nanotechnology companies in the past eight years.
Currently, 60 percent of natural sciences students are engaged in undergraduate research projects ranging from developing nano-biochips in the McDevitt Research Laboratory in the BioScience Research Collaborative, to designing and completing original research projects focused on topics as diverse as optical physics and field ecology. The lab of Emilia Morosan, assistant professor of physics and astronomy, is looking for compounds with unique interplay between crystallographic, magnetic and transport properties that will make a new generation of practical, high-temperature superconductors possible. Field trips to locales such as Belize, Morocco and New Mexico form an integral part of the Department of Earth Science undergraduate experience. Students also benefit from research partnerships with NASA, MD Anderson Cancer Center and Baylor College of Medicine.
In the spring of 2011, the Brockman Hall for Physics and Astronomy opened its doors to add to the already impressive roster of Rice's state-of-the-art facilities. Brockman Hall is a 110,000-square-foot facility that includes vibration and noise controlled underground laboratories to support work in atomic, molecular and optical physics; biophysics; condensed matter physics; nanoengineering; and photonics.
As a natural sciences major, you will gain knowledge in the classroom from leading scientists and mentors, all while having access to advanced facilities and cutting-edge technology to create real-world solutions. And as an emerging scientist, you will be counted on to continue the tradition of undergraduate involvement in research.
The School of Social Sciences' curriculum covers a diverse range of subject matter: anthropology, economics, political science, linguistics, sport management, psychology and sociology. With seven departments, three interdisciplinary majors and five institutes
and centers, you'll have abundant opportunities to learn, explore and grow in your chosen field. You might join an archaeological dig in an ancient city, study attitudes toward race and religion, evaluate energy policy, or explore Rice's new minor in neuroscience.
To make the learning more meaningful, the school has created the GATEWAY program for undergraduates. Students complete internships, summer fellowships, independent research projects or international ambassadorships — experiences that enrich their
education outside the classroom. Through GATEWAY, you'll put your knowledge to work and learn firsthand how you can make a meaningful contribution to your field.
The Kinder Institute for Urban Research focuses on urban populations with an emphasis on demographics and social issues in Houston and in major cities around the world. Its education programs, research and public outreach all contribute to the global conversation, connecting Rice to the rest of Houston and beyond.
Forty percent of Rice undergraduates choose a major in the social sciences, so you can learn with — and from — a large group of peers. Social sciences faculty members offer exceptional teaching and mentorship. And you'll have a crucial
third element to complete your education: the chance to put your classroom knowledge to use, even before you graduate.
Additional opportunities are available in the following divisions of study, although these schools do not grant undergraduate degrees:
Undergraduates enjoy flexible distribution requirements and more than 50 majors. Many opt to double or even triple major within or across divisions of study. Students have numerous opportunities for experiential learning through on-campus research collaborations with distinguished faculty and through internships and off-campus research with public, private and nonprofit organizations in Houston and across the globe through study abroad.