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Reviews 988 total reviews with an average rating of 3.9

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4 College Student

Athletics: best part of the school life

4 people found this useful Report
4 College Student

Off-Campus Dining: Some of the restaurants are expensive

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Student

Administration: Cars aren't necessary on campus

1 person found this useful Report
3 College Student

Scholarships: The parking fee is reasonable

1 person found this useful Report
4 College Student

Campus Food: The food is good and affordable

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Senior

Majors: I worked at an architecture from so I got to see what it is like to have a business in the architecture world, it is not quite like school. I learned a great deal about architecture, business, and customer service.

4 College Freshman

Local Area: As a pre-med nerd, I get excited seeing the vast greatness of the Texas Medical Center and the museums of Houston from my residential college. Rice students tend to stay on campus though. Everything I need like food, friends, work and fun are all on campus, so I don't feel the urge to explore the local area very often.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Health & Safety: Rice University preaches about the culture of care. Students are meant to look after another's well-being. From my experience it seems true. At my first college party I drank too much and got sick. Several students with out hesitation helped me get back to my room and made sure I was ok. Since then, I always ask people at parties whether I know them or not if they are feeling well just to make sure they are fine.

3 people found this useful Report
4 College Freshman

Campus Food: I chose to attend Rice over Johns Hopkins because of the food. It is pretty epic. However, I am not a fan of no Saturday dinner. I prefer spending my Saturday evenings working on homework and studying, so when Saturday night comes along I can get trashed with out worrying about the homework I need to do on Sunday. It is very time consuming to have to go off campus to get food.

2 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Scholarships: I would not have been able to attend Rice University had I not received the amount of aid I did. Rice is loaded!

3 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Diversity: Lots of Damn liberals if that's what you're into.

6 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Administration: I'm fairly confident Rice has the best administration of any top college. The school actively seeks feedback and input from students and even has current students active on university governance committees. The student government itself can be disorganized and terrible, but Rice's administration is top-notch.

College Freshman

Scholarships: I come from a well-off family and got no financial aid from Rice, but did get some from other external sources. Rice has a ton of socio-economic diversity (11th in the country) and therefore does not give quite as much aid to rich families, but this diversity makes for a much richer (hah) college experience in my opinion.

4 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Health & Safety: I feel incredibly safe on campus, though I recognize I am a very tall male and there may be others who feel differently. However, other students I have interacted with seem to find Rice as safe as I do. Rice's sexual assault policies are very clear and progressive. There are many sexual assault prevention/awareness discussions and events throughout the year, put on by both students and administration. Rice has its own very large police department and extensive security measures. The area around Rice is very affluent and nice, though a few assaults have happened near campus. As it is in the fourth largest city in the US, the campus will be more dangerous than somewhere rural.

Healthcare on campus is top-notch. I had food poisoning (from somewhere far outside Houston!) and went to the student health center and they did a great job helping me. For more serious injuries, there is the world's largest medical center right across the street from campus with loads of trauma centers and Rice offers a cheap college insurance policy.

The excellently maintained gym, pools and sports fields also promote health and wellness around campus.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Academics: I consider academics at Rice to be too difficult and constantly feel stupid compared to my peers. The community is very nurturing and competitive and students rarely if ever discuss grades, but I find classes incredibly challenging. Though Rice is known more for its innovations in science and math, humanities classes are equally respected in my experience and just as challenging. Students often continue academically-minded work outside of the classroom setting in clubs, research activities or just dinnertime discussion. There is an intellectual air around campus distinct from other equally prestigious but less nerdy schools. Some potential students may find it off-putting, but Rice students love to geek out.

I'm on the staff for Catalyst, Rice's undergraduate research journal, and help with the ICSJ, a similar journal drawing from Rice and 10 other peer colleges in the US and UK. I'm also in Owlchemy, Rice's chemical society, which has provided some amazing travel/research opportunities and introduced me to some great friends on campus. Whatever academic interests you have, Rice probably has at least two clubs for each and you will be accepted by all.

Rice's size allows for two other nearly unique instances to happen:

1. the registration process is a BREEZE and students can pretty much get whatever classes they want, but Rice is big enough to offer a huge variety of classes

2. professors hang out with students all the time outside of classes, giving this rich research university a liberal-arts feel

Distribution requirements are very lax as well. Rice is probably second only to Brown among top colleges for flexible curriculum requirements. There are 3 distribution areas student must take 4 classes in, at least one of which will be covered by your major. They are humanities (study of things made by humans), social sciences (study of humans) and science/math (study of nature). AP credit can count towards many of these and classes can be taken pass/fail.

4 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Campus Housing: The residential college system, as you've probably heard by now, drives a significant part of Rice's social structure. It is also how on-campus housing is sorted, and each of the (currently 11) residential colleges has its own building on campus. Some are most aesthetically pleasing or newer than others, but they all have individual perks/charms which wins over almost all students in the end. Whatever college one is placed into, they pretty much always end up loving it. The sense of camaraderie bred by residential college allows for strong relationships to easily be formed.

A vast majority of students share a bathroom with one other person (their roommate), though a few places still have bathrooms shared by 4 or rarely 6 (suite style). Freshmen usually get their own bathroom with a roommate though, and the bathrooms are cleaned by staff every other day. My room as a freshman is HUGE, about double the size my room was at home, and has a killer view. Choosing on campus housing varies by residential college but housing is guaranteed for at least 3/4 years and is a very good bargain.

1 person found this useful Report
College Freshman

Greek Life: Rice does not have a Panhellenic system on campus.

5 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: Houston is an enormous, diverse city and offers a wide variety of food. Right near campus there are several grocery stores and restaurants ranging in cost and quality from Target's grocery store to gourmet French cuisine. I've tried Turkish and Ethiopian, both a short walk from campus, and they were delicious. Many vegan/organic options as well, which surprised me as I had my stereotypes about Texas shattered. There's plenty of that good Southern BBQ around too though. Basically every type of food one could want is a 15 minute drive away at most, and there are lots of 24-hour places close to campus too. The late night food tends to be unhealthy however.

5 College Freshman

Local Area: With the world's largest medical center, a thriving museum district, a gorgeous shopping mall, an enormous park complete with a theatre, zoo, science center and golf course AND the metro rail all literally bordering campus, Rice's location can't be beat. The Texas Med Center conducts amazing research and has killer internship opportunities, there are over 20 museums/galleries within walking distance of campus, Rice Village has a great selection of stores and restaurants, Hermann Park is stunningly beautiful with loads of attractions and Rice pays for public transportation around Houston. It is an absolutely ideal environment for a college campus, I cannot imagine a better one.

The area around campus is also incredibly safe, even when walking back from Whattaburger at 2am. It is in a protected and affluent part of Houston.

5 College Freshman

Party Scene: There are so many different events happening every night of the week, but not everything is what one might think of as a stereotypical college "party." Public parties are sanctioned by the university and put on by a residential college. They usually consist of a big dance room, alcohol and drinking games hosted in dorm rooms near the party. There are roughly two a month and turnout is usually 500-800 students over the course of the night. Private parties happen all the time and range drastically in size and activities. There are also many fun events put on by student organizations like Esperanza (a formal dance that takes place off campus) and Beer Bike (words cannot do it justice) which might be atypical college parties but very fun and very well attended.

4 College Freshman

Party Scene: THEY ARE SAFE. Most parties are held on campus on the weekend. No one needs to worry about transportation or getting a DUI. RUPD only wants us to be safe, so you won't get in trouble unless you put your or someone else's safety in danger. I guess they are more tame than UT parties, but that's ok. You still get drunk with your friends, dance your tail off at the party, talk up the cute girl smiling at you, nail her back at your room, and then walk her back to her college like the Gent you are.

5 College Freshman

Campus Housing: Will Friendly Rice!!! The residential college system is such an incredible thing for the college freshman. At Rice there are 11 residential colleges currently. They are our coed replacement to frats and sororities and everyone has their own. Students tend to identify with there college as much as they do with their university. I was the only person in my school to be accepted into Rice, so I was afraid transitioning into college life would be a lonely experience. However, upon arriving to my residential college, I was treated like a rock star. All of the upper classmen Will Ricers were excited to meet me and the rest of the incoming freshman. From there. it was easy to make friends within my residential college. Even after the school year started college events like fun in quad are held often, so that students from the same college can interact. I don't feel like I'm living with a bunch of strangers and that matters a lot to me.

4 College Freshman

Athletics: I've only gone to varsity sporting events to support friends that were participating. It's not like we are bad; we won five conference championships. its just not a big part of the culture here. IM and club sports are Bae. They are great ways to make friends. The competitiveness of the residential colleges leads to tons of fun and college pride.

1 person found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Guys & Girls: Rice University girls get WAY less credit than they deserve. Ok, they are not super models, but lets face it, neither are you. It is possible to meet really cute girls here, but what really sells me on Rice girls is talking to them. Talking to them you find out about their passions and drives. You're just left like, "Wow, you are an incredible person." Experiences like that happen frequently at Rice. It is part of Rice University being so selective, everyone here is amazing.

6 people found this useful Report
5 College Freshman

Administration: Rice likes students having fun. We work hard all week, so during the weekend we let a little loose. adminstration just wants us to be ok. The honor code is Bae.

2 people found this useful Report
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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?

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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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