Location
Houston, TX
Undergrads
3,803
Tuition
$37,292
Admission Difficulty
Very Hard
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Reviews 828 total reviews with an average rating of 3.9

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5 Recent Alumnus

Off-Campus Dining: Definitely a Great Deal – The school has discount deals with many of the places near campus, and others offer it anyway. There's a decent variety within a one-mile radius from Japanese, Thai, Vietnamese, Italian, French, South American, Spanish, Greek, Turkish, etc.

3 Recent Alumnus

Computers: A Nice Variety – There are random labs strewn throughout campus, many of which are open to all students (read: don't require swipe access). There is also a nice variety of PCs and Macs from which to choose, though less Macs than PC's. The also tend to crowd around a certain time in the day, and especially during finals.

3 Recent Alumnus

Weather: Sometimes it'll rain on a 20% forecast and be bone dry on a 70% forecast, sometimes it rains in torrents with no clue as to when it'll stop, sometimes the downpour lasts all of 5 minutes. But as long as you have rain boots and an umbrella, you're semi dry.

3 College Junior

Off-Campus Housing: Living off-campus isn't too bad. There are options close to campus for people who don't have vehicles, and the MetroRail opens up several neighborhoods for students with limited transportation. However, acquiring a place to live can be a HUGE hassle. In downtown Houston, apartments will go in a hurry. You'll have to move very quickly to grab a place to live, and there's a good chance you'll have to settle for some pretty high rents.

3 College Senior

Guys & Girls: Nerds can be sexy – For a small school known primarily for its academics, Rice has its fair share of attractive students. That said, if your looking for the kind of people who can skate by on looks alone, try somewhere else. The school is remarkably healthy so there are not many overweight students of either gender. Dress comes in two extremes: free-shirts-and-gym-shorts casual and interview-ready-senior classy. Some grad school departments have a reputation for poor hygiene, but it isn't really a problem among the underclassmen. As a female student I will say I find many guys here intelligent AND social adept.

2 people found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Diversity: Misleading Stats – Rice boosts that not one race holds the majority at Rice, but this wording easily allows for two racial groups to dominate, which I'm not sure is much better than one. The school population consists mostly of white and Asian students. Other groups are not nearly as well represented, especially in contrast to the surrounding city of Houston's demographics. However things are surprisingly diverse politically because while it located in a conservative state, the more liberal atmosphere of Houston balances things out. There does not seem to be a large LGBT community on campus and have met people who say they've face intolerance of this nature.

4 College Senior

Campus Strictness: The Alcohol Policy Is Fair – Rice University has smartly chosen an alcohol policy that encourages students stay on campus while drinking. Some students complain that their lax policy on underage drinking is not explicitly stated in any rule book, but remember that Rice does have to at least pretend it is enforcing the law. The reality is, at many colleges, a notable part of budget ends up going towards alcohol at public and private parties. The latter is open to those of all ages. Just don't let your own personal party spill out into the open and keep your cups at the door.

1 person found this useful Report
College Sophomore

Majors: Most of the internship opps at Rice are focused on the sciences and engineering. For academic majors, there's little to none.

3 College Sophomore

Majors: The linguistics program at Rice is subpar, at least in terms of the teaching staff (with a few notable, popular exceptions). It's a small program, so the flaws are noticeable.

4 College Sophomore

Majors: Not a very large program, but still an interesting, welcoming program with good professors and a wide variety of study topics.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Majors: Outstanding Academic Programs – What you hear about Rice University most is its engineering program, but don't be afraid - the "academ" major programs are just as rigorous, if not as widely advertised.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Campus Dining: All meals are provided except Saturday dinners (to give the cooking staff a break). When meals are good, they are amazing, but especially on Sunday dinners, the servery tends to fall short. Otherwise, there's an abundance of taco nights, dessert arrays, crepes, omelettes, even chocolate fondue to look forward too.

3 people found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Off-Campus Housing: Options Available but School Doesn't Help – Rice Housing and Dining refuses to help you find off-campus housing, even when you go to their offices. Thankfully, there are many options for off-campus housing in the vicinity, many within walking/biking distance. Only caveat is, avoid traveling off-campus late at nights alone.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Academics: Excellent Natural Sciences Program – All Natural Sciences majors provide a diverse curriculum with several required courses and many electives. Undergraduate research is often an integral part of each program.

4 people found this useful Report
3 College Junior

Parking: Available but Expensive – Most undergrads can get parking in the West Lot, but the cost is prohibitively expensive and is quite distant from classes. If you are lucky, you can get one of the nearer lots, but these are even more pricey. Honestly, you are better off without a car.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Junior

Academics: Rice provides strong foundation courses, though class sizes are fairly large. Success in these courses is dependent on student effort, but should easily prepare for more advanced courses.

3 people found this useful Report
4 College Junior

Overall Experience: Student life and academics are two strongest points about Rice. Rice is very welcoming from day one, and the residential college system fosters a family-like atmosphere.

2 people found this useful Report
4 Recent Alumnus

Computers: Computer Friendly Campus – It's always helpful to have your own computer, but the ones provided at Rice are great. There are many labs scattered across campus in different buildings serving different students. There is easily accessible wifi everywhere and while having a personal printer is helpful, it is not necessary.

1 person found this useful Report
3 Recent Alumnus

Transportation: Hard to Get Far Away Without a Car – Rice has a lot of great activities and food walking distance, but if you want to get far away it is pretty impossible without a car. There is one great metro line that many students use to go downtown, but the rest of public transportation is not great and Houston is a city spread out.

2 people found this useful Report
5 Recent Alumnus

Local Atmosphere: Lots to Do Within Walking Distance – Rice is situated nicely between Rice Village and the Museum District. Rice Village is an area full to the brim with shops and restaurants and the Museum District has a solid Science, History, Modern Art and Fine Arts museum all within walking distance.

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Senior

Campus Strictness: Laid Back – As long as you dont hit the very few rules that will get you in serious trouble, punishments are usually not severe and uncommon.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Senior

Local Atmosphere: Rice is located in the middle of everything! Restaurants, shopping, anything you could ask for you can get to within 10-15 minutes, whether by car, bike, or lightrail. Rice if you look at a map is in between large centers of activity - Downtown, Midtown, Rice Village, Montrose, Westheimer, and the Galleria areas.

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Senior

Transportation: Parking = Bad – Parking is not so great at Rice. It is pretty expensive to keep your car on campus, and when you park there is alway a long walk across campus to get to where you need to. On the other hand public transportation for off campus students is pretty tough as the Houston Metro can be spotty at times.

1 person found this useful Report
5 Recent Alumnus

Computers: Better Than NASA Quality – Really--you have to ask this question--it's Rice U after all!

1 person found this useful Report
5 Recent Alumnus

Parking: Take the Shuttle – If you part at the stadium, you can take a shuttle anywhere you need to go. The shuttles are timely!

1 person found this useful Report
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Students Often Come From

Photos More photos . . .

Lovett Hall
Lovett Hall
Lovett Hall Lovett Hall Visible in front is a statue of the founder, William Marsh Rice
Photo by Daderot under Public Domain | Source

Overall ExperienceWhat's This?

Overall, Rice students are highly satisfied with their college experiences. While they complain about some of the negative aspects of Houston (pollution, transportation, traffic, panhandlers), they also admit that there are many positive aspects to Rice’s location (cultural and social opportunities of a big city, great restaurants!). Similarly, students have gripes about the University, including the increasingly bleak parking situation and a somewhat repetitive social scene (the same parties every year). Many aspects of Houston and Rice can be seen as both positive and negative. Houston weather is warm and temperate for the winter months, but it is oppressively hot and humid in the summer. Rice’s small campus and student body are nice because they create a personal environment and allow students to meet more people and not just feel like faces in the crowd.

Rice students love the residential college system. They also find their courses to be challenging but manageable. With few exceptions, the instruction is very engaging, and professors are accessible and personally interested in students. Rice University is steeped in tradition, and some of these traditions (O-Week, Willy Week, and Beer Bike) are the most anticipated social events of the year. Rice is small enough that these events bring together almost the entire student body. The traditions, high academic standards, and amazing people that make up the Rice community create an extraordinary and irreplaceable environment, making Rice an incredibly unique and unparalleled university.

Admitted Students' GPA/Test Scores More on admissions . . .

Applicant Status At Rice University

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