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Rich and Nancy Kinder announced a $15 million gift to Rice's Institute for Urban Research on Wednesday. The institute has been renamed in their honor as the Kinder Institute for Urban Research.An event was held at Baker Hall to announce the newly named institute as well as to thank the Kinders for their donation to Rice. Speakers at the event included President David Leebron, Houston Mayor and Rice alumna Annise Parker, Sociology Professor and Co-Director of the Institute for Urban Research Stephen Klineberg and Rich Kinder. Many prominent figures of Houston attended the event, such as religious leaders, heads of museums and local government members like City Council member Oliver Pennington.
In conjunction with Rice's push for an environmentally friendly campus, students from ENST 302: Rice into the Future have brought a surrey bike to Rice. The students involved in the project are hoping to promote sustainable transportation by introducing surrey bikes to Rice as a replacement for at least some of the golf carts used by Facilities, Engineering and Planning and Housing and Dining. The environmentally friendly golf cart alternative has been peddled around campus for the past two weeks for a trial run. The surrey at Rice is a three-seater, two-pedaler side-by-side tandem bicycle. Each set of pedals has its own set of gears so that the individual pedalers can choose a comfortable speed. The surrey also has headlights and taillights for nighttime visibility and a canopy to protect riders from rain and sun. The surrey will be on campus until Tuesday, while a group of students from ENST 302 studies how much energy will be saved by using it. Lovett College senior Alicia Hernandez, who is a member of the group, said the goal of their research is to have surreys permanently on campus soon.
After 15 years of fluctuating discussion, the French, Hispanic, German, and Classical Studies departments are considering a merger to form one World Literatures department. The merger would not result in any changes to staff or curriculum but would restructure the four departments into one overarching department making cross-listed courses and expansion easier to organize. Dean of Humanities Nicolas Shumway has set up a task force that is looking into a possible graduate program for the departments as well as what advantages there would be for combining the departments into one.
The hedges surrounding Rice University seem to wall in students, despite the university's location within America's fourth-largest city. A microcosm forms on the Rice campus where students almost never have to leave the hedges unless they feel compelled to, but on-campus programs are working to change this. 1. HedgeHopper
Rice students are accustomed to rodents prowling the quads and walkways, but mostly in the form of squirrels. When rats began invading Hanszen College, Rice rodents became much less appealing. Hanszen and Wiess College have both given reports of rat sightings around their residential and common areas. Ransacking trash cans and haunting hallways, rats have become a noticeable pest for the south colleges, Hanszen and Wiess in particular. However, Manager of Communications for Facilities, Engineering and Planning Susann Glenn said the rat problem has not actually worsened in the past two years.