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After 18 years as the president of Rice, David Leebron has been spreading his wings. During what he refers to as his sabbatical year, emphasizing that he is too young to be retired, his pastimes have included skiing and attending musicals. He also spends his time listening to Aretha Franklin and Bob Marley.
The architect firm Nelson Byrd Woltz unveiled their proposed plans for the Academic Quadrangle redesign to the public on March 9. The changes included relocating Willy’s statue to the corner of Lovett Hall and the Welcome Center, adding community gathering spaces by Fondren Library and paving a curved, tree-lined path stretching diagonally from Rayzor Hall to Herzstein Hall.
Inspired by Tiny Love Stories, a section of the Modern Love column by the New York Times, our new series shares the love lives of the Rice community in bite-sized stories. If you’re interested in telling us your love story, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Growing up, Evelyn Garcia was surrounded by two things: family and food. Now, the “Top Chef: Houston” finalist serves her grandparents’ Salvadoran cheese at Jūn, her brand-new restaurant, in hopes of uniting customers through food.
From music composition to multivariable calculus, one prolific artist has excelled at it all. Daniel Cho, a double major in violin performance and composition at the Shepherd School of Music, began playing the violin around the age of five and won a competition for his first original composition at the age of nine. In addition to his impressive portfolio, Cho is minoring in business and is set to intern in Los Angeles this summer at Crowe, a global accounting firm, before returning to Rice to earn his Masters in Accounting. He hopes that his experience in finance will be another string on his bow to position himself in Los Angeles long term, where he can begin composing music for film soundtracks.
Australian-inspired, New York-based Bluestone Lane just opened its second Texas cafė in Rice Village, so naturally the Thresher put on our nicest Sunday brunch attire (featuring Riya’s best boxer shorts), grabbed our camera and headed over to check it out. With its seafoam-blue tiles and beach-themed decor, including numerous fake ferns, Bluestone’s interior is reminiscent of a middle-aged woman’s bathroom. Admittedly, the decor is more appropriate when considering that the cafė caters to working professionals with readily disposable incomes, hence the $9.50 charge for a berry smoothie. Although the menu prices were exorbitant, the food and coffee were incredible.
The newest addition to the Bitty and Beau’s Coffee chain opened its doors in Rice Village on Jan. 14, almost seven years after the original shop’s opening in Wilmington, N.C. Founders Ben and Amy Wright named the business after their children Bitty and Beau, who both have Down syndrome. The franchise aims to empower and advocate for people with disabilities by including them in the workforce.
How does a school ranked No. 1 for both its race/class interaction and quality of life provide resources for students experiencing financial, academic or personal burdens? The Office of Student Success Initiatives, and by extension Rice’s resources for first generation and/ or low-income students, runs largely through word of mouth, according to director Araceli Lopez.
From stubbed toes to life-threatening injuries, one group of dedicated students has seen it all. Throughout the past 26 years, Rice University Emergency Medical Services has rallied around the Rice community, providing support during natural disasters such as Winter Storm Uri and Hurricane Katrina and administering 4,372 vaccines during the COVID-19 pandemic. For Collegiate EMS Week, which takes place during the second week in November, the organization hosted a series of events to increase their visibility and continue expanding their impact on campus.
Last Sunday, the No. 21 Rice volleyball team swept Louisiana Tech University on Senior Day, winning three straight sets and recording the second-highest hitting percentage they’ve had this season at 0.432.
Kenzie Pickett accomplishes the impossible — she revives centuries-old artifacts for the modern world. As a Camfield fellow at the Museum of Fine Arts, she spends 10 to 15 hours each week researching historical objects, preparing for the museum’s new traveling exhibit and writing tombstones, which are 100-word labels that describe each artwork. At Rice, Pickett is double majoring in art history and ancient Mediterranean civilizations and double minoring in museum studies and cultural heritage. Her interest in curatorial work and museums was first ignited as a child, when she watched “Jurassic Park” and “Night at the Museum,” in which characters are magically resuscitated, reentering the 21st century as new beings.
Hosted by Rice Design for the first time, a three-day Design-a-thon titled “Level Up!” was held entirely virtually this past weekend. Students from universities across the country participated in the competition, which challenged them to create a web or mobile application in response to a prompt in financial technology or health and lifestyle. The event also offered practical workshops about design principles from local industry professionals.
Every year, festival-goers congregate at Zilker Park for the Austin City Limits Music Festival. This year, the Thresher once again made the trip to see for ourselves what the hype was about (and also to see SZA, who did not disappoint). For those who might want a recap or weren’t able to make it out to the festival this year: first, check out our Spotify playlist, and second, read on for our take on the best and worst performances from both weekends.
Izzy Heltai has spent almost a decade working to be heard. From sleeping in parking lots to performing for hundreds of people, he is intentional in finding joy throughout his journey. Now that he’s reached a turning point in his career, the singer-songwriter’s hard work is finally paying off, with multiple tours lined up through the spring and a stint at this year’s Austin City Limits Music Festival. Heltai is currently on tour with Bear’s Den before hitting Zilker Park on Oct. 15.
Sometimes, obscured messages come billboard-sized. Brochstein Pavilion’s newest wall art debuted last Friday for the Moody Center for the Arts’ fourth iteration of their Off the Wall series, a partnership between Moody and the Glassell School of Art’s Core Residency Program. “Death Drive” was created by interdisciplinary artist Danielle Dean to critique capitalistic greed and its exploitation of environmental and labor resources. Specifically, Dean examines the case study of Fordlandia, a utopian city conceptualized by automobile maker Henry Ford and built in the Amazon Rainforest in the late 1920s. A now-derelict rubber factory, Fordlandia’s failure had devastating consequences for the natural environment and indigenous Brazilian populations.
Neverland has never been so magical. The last time choreographer Trey McIntyre’s “Peter Pan” appeared at the Wortham Theater Center for the Houston Ballet was ten years ago during the 2012-2013 season. This season, the show returned from Sept. 9 to Sept. 18 in full fashion, featuring fairies, flying flips and fantastical sets.
Arte Público Press, the oldest and largest Latine publishing house in the nation, has never taken things by the books. Instead, they’ve promoted Latine writing and culture despite national pushback. The Press celebrated their 40th anniversary on the first day of Hispanic Heritage Month with a performing arts gala held at the University of Houston’s Moores Opera House, featuring performances from Solero Flamenco, Brazilian dance company Sambabom, the Houston Grand Opera and more.