Twins Natalie and Loren Goddard look almost identical in their Rice track and field shirts. They spend most mornings together at cross country practice, mirror images in uniform. It’s nothing new: In high school, they were both on the same cross country team, hung out with the same friends and had the same schedule. As freshmen, Rice is their first chance to differentiate their lives from one another. Natalie is at Duncan College, and Loren is at Hanszen College, where they hope they can find different friend groups and different clubs to be involved in.
“Being in different colleges allows us to have different experiences and friends in college but still have a familiar face and someone to talk to on campus,” Natalie said.
Both are engineering majors and share a CHEM 121 class.
“We haven’t gotten very many grades yet because it’s pretty early in the semester, but a little twin rivalry never hurts,” Loren said.
“We definitely help each other but most of the time neither of us know what’s going on,” Natalie added.
Without similar majors or the same team to keep them close, other siblings hardly ever cross paths.
Anthony Charletta’s older sister Monica (Will Rice ’17) graduated last year. They mostly led separate lives, but would hang out every once in a while at a party or get dinner together.
“It's a comfortable feeling having a family member so close,” Anthony, a Duncan junior, said. “It definitely helped me meet people, but sometimes I felt like it was hard to be seen as an individual instead of someone's younger brother.”
Like Anthony, sophomore Freddy Cavallero rarely sees his older sister Emelia on campus, even though they are both at Will Rice. He blames “#andersoncollege” since Emelia is a senior architecture major. They are also in different social circles, so they have to plan time to meet for coffee.
“In high school I was always in her shadow, but now we both have made our own name for ourselves,” Freddy said. “It's also kind of awkward when we run into each other drunk on campus.”
Meanwhile, sophomores Matthew and Nathaniel Archibald made no attempt to separate themselves at college. They do everything together: classes, studying, intramural tennis — even rooming together at Will Rice College.
“I’ve always thought that since we are close, we might as well do things together,” Matthew said. “It’s also nice, because if he does anything bad, I can just threaten to call our mom. I feel like I have way more leverage than most roommates.”
Nathan likes having his brother so close because Matthew is a familiar face in a new environment.
“A lot of people go into college not really knowing anyone, so it feels rather unique being at Rice with someone I’ve known all my life — except like the first 14 minutes,” he said.
They are both majoring in English, so they’ve taken many classes together.
“I know that they try their hardest, but most of our professors haven’t been able to tell us apart,” Matthew said. “It makes me wonder how they calculate our participation grades for our classes.”
While siblings Matthew and Chris Brehm don’t share a major, they do share a class together: HIST 271, “History of South Asia.” They also share a textbook, which Matthew Brehm says has been “a little stressful.”
“There haven’t been any grades yet, but I’m sure I’ll try to outscore him,” Matthew Brehm said.
Matthew, Chris and their younger brother Samuel are all at different colleges. Matthew is a sophomore at Jones, Chris is a senior at Baker and Samuel is a freshman at Duncan. Even so, they make time to have dinner or lunch every week and also watch Matthew’s performances with Rice Dance Theater and Chris’ with campus comedy improv group Kinda Sketchy.
“The great thing about Rice is that it's small enough to see siblings when I need their advice or support,” Matthew Brehm said. “Conversely, the university is large enough to escape them completely. Growing up, we lived pretty separate lives. There's actually less tension now than in our youth.”