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In a week jam-packed with social activities and academic sessions, a thousand nervous and enthusiastic freshmen are accepted into the warm embrace of the Rice community. Throughout Orientation Week, students are introduced to countless Rice traditions, given an O-Week group and are inducted into their residential colleges. With next year's class of coordinators already drafting plans, one from each college shared their views on the magic of O-Week.
Two days after the elections ballot was approved by the Student Association, multiple concerns have arisen, including a possible Rice Program Council constitutional violation and Kevin Guo potentially dropping out from the only contested Student Association race — the race between John Cook and Guo for the treasurer’s role.
The Thresher reached out to candidates running for election in all blanket tax organizations: Student Association, Rice Rally Club, Rice Program Council, the Rice Thresher, Rice Campanile, Honor Council, Rice Student Volunteering Program and KTRU Radio. Candidates marked with an * did not respond to requests for comment, and their statement is copied from the SA’s website. Currently, the only contested roles are: SA Treasurer, Honor Council Sophomore Representative and Rice Program Council President.
Every baseball player remembers when they first picked up the game. For most, it’s playing catch in the backyard or hitting off of a tee. But for Trei Cruz, junior shortstop on this year’s Rice baseball team, his first baseball memory is everything but normal.
Last year marked a brave new step into an uncharted world for the Rice baseball team. After 27 years, 23 NCAA Tournament appearances and one national championship all under the steady stewardship of Wayne Graham, Rice opted to part ways with the only coach they’d ever achieved success under. But 2018, Graham’s final season, was a far cry from the sustained success that characterized his tenure as Rice’s head coach. The Owls struggled to a 26-31-2 finish, missing the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1994.
Before each Rice baseball home game this season, you can find junior pitcher Kel Bordwine playing ping pong at Baker College or dining at Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers, where he always eats the same meal in a specific order. But once the game starts, you can expect to see Bordwine on the mound frequently, after he finished last season with a solid 3.69 ERA as opponents hit for a .258 average against him in nine starts.
In the fall of 2018, Rice Athletics faced a difficult task: hiring a new baseball head coach in the stead of the legendary Wayne Graham. Rice ultimately selected Matt Bragga, formerly the coach of Tennessee Tech University, as its new head coach.
To prepare for its reopening this past Monday, Willy’s Pub implemented a camera and ID scanner system at the bar’s entrance. Pub was closed for the first few weeks of the semester following Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission violations in December at the “Last Pub of the Decade” event, according to Frank Rodriguez, board president of Valhalla & Willy’s Permits, which oversees the licenses of Pub and Valhalla.
Due to concerns over the spread of the novel coronavirus, Rice Crisis Management suspended all university-sponsored travel to China by faculty, students and staff on Jan. 29, according to a universitywide email. The email also stated that there were no confirmed cases at Rice or in Texas at the time.
Following concerns that the university was putting a strain on Houston’s resources, beginning this spring semester, the Harris County Emergency Corp will be hired for a trial period as the campus’s ambulance service from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. every Friday and Saturday night.
The ongoing fight for a community benefits agreement between Houston community members and Rice Management Company for the Innovation District project continued on Monday, with a Student Association proposal to change language in their resolution supporting the CBA — the proposal was tabled after heated discussion. The SA Senate proposal, which would shift SA support from community members to the City of Houston, would be a potential blow to the community members who form the Houston Coalition for Equitable Development without Displacement.
The Rice Women’s Resource Center began offering free pregnancy tests last week to all students. These tests are located in the center in the Rice Memorial Center, alongside other previously-offered resources like condoms, tampons and pads.
Students expressed frustration over hour-long wait times for McMurtry College’s annual Y2K-themed public party, held on Feb. 1. Following unsafe line conditions that led to a student being hospitalized and Rice University Police Department shutting down the party last year, the organizers implemented a new wristband system for Saturday’s public. Some students, however, still reported wait times exceeding two hours, deterring them from staying in line to enter the public.
The Rice women’s basketball team, now riding a nine-game win-streak, has reached strong mid-season form. Through its first 20 games, Rice has posted an impressive 14-6 record, and is 8-1 at Tudor Fieldhouse, where its only loss came at the hands of No. 5 Texas A&M University. This week, the Owls look to continue their strong stretch when they take on the University Alabama, Birmingham on Thursday, and Middle Tennessee State University on Saturday.
Hosted by the Rice African Student Association, “Africayé 2020: Coming to Africa” will immerse the Rice community in the sights, sounds and tastes of African culture this Sunday. The annual showcase will feature music, dance, fashion, comedy, skits, food and a newly added art gallery.
I’m not sure why we still care about an awards ceremony that continues to be #sowhite and once gave “Lord of the Rings” 11 Oscars (the same number of nominations that “Joker” somehow received this year) — but here we are! As “Green Book” taught me last year with its unexpected win for Best Picture, there’s no point in trying to predict this year’s big winners ahead of the ceremony, which will air this Sunday, Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. So, I’ll settle for pointing out the most painful snubs instead.
The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo offers more than just rollercoasters, mutton bustin’ and fried twinkies - this year, the world’s largest rodeo returns with an impressive lineup of musical performers. From homegrown hitmakers like Lizzo and Willie Nelson to international sensations like K-Pop boy group NCT 127 and Latin chart-topper Backy G, this year’s star-studded lineup boasts diversity in genre as well as its performers. Out of the 20 major artists headlining NRG Stadium from March 3 - 22, here are five that are definitely not to be missed. Experience the sounds of Rodeo Houston 2020 early with our playlist of must listen to tracks by headlining artists here.
Although Billie Eilish may have been the star of this year’s Grammy awards, the ceremony was a success for another, more local musician: Robert Simpson, a Shepherd School professor who won Best Choral Performance for his role in conducting the Houston Chamber Choir’s recording of “Duruflé: Complete Choral Works.”
We, as active participants in the Student Association Senate, feel that the SA is currently operating by a top-down model, with the chain of communication beginning with Rice administration and ending with the students. But the intent of an organization like the SA should be the opposite. It’s not meant to be a conduit through which university administrators impose their opinions and projects. We have lost a sense of student agency in the SA Senate, and this is a dangerous path for the SA to continue on. The SA is 4,000 students, not just a few elected college representatives and an executive team. The SA Senate is made up of a system of delegates for the sole reason of representing the student body, so let’s use them and listen to them.
Saturday night, hundreds of Rice students paid $2 to stand in line for one of the most popular publics of the year, Y2K, with some waiting over two hours only to not get in. Despite claiming that they based the number of wristband sales on statistical “models” that would allow entry to everyone, McMurtry College refused to release this data publicly, leaving the logic and intent behind this new system unclear. Additionally, the conflicting explanations given by various McMurtry student leaders have muddled the situation rather than clarified it.