Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Saturday, April 01, 2023 — Houston, TX


FEATURES 3/22/22 11:13pm

Students talk first normal spring break after two years

As March ushers in the first official day of spring, it also marks the first normal spring break for Rice students since 2019. The COVID-19 pandemic sent students home in the spring break of March 2020 and last spring, student holidays throughout the semester replaced spring break. On these “sprinkle days,” classes were not held and assignments could not be due. 

FEATURES 3/22/22 11:10pm

Meet historic women from Rice University’s past and present

Although Rice’s student body was predominantly white and male when the university was established in 1912, it has grown into the much more diverse community it is today. In honor of Women’s History Month, get to know some of the female pioneers throughout Rice’s nearly 110-year history. 

FEATURES 3/8/22 11:27pm

Rice Apps relaunches carpool mobile site

As school breaks and seasonal holidays approach, so does the need to travel to and from the airport. Previous years have seen a spreadsheet shared among students hoping to find rides. But the rereleased Rice Carpool site allows a simple way for the Rice community to find and coordinate rides on their phone. 

FEATURES 3/8/22 11:26pm

COVID, construction affect accessibility at Rice

Ever since the pandemic started in 2020, classes, events and more were moved online. Learning virtually came with its own challenges, such as Zoom fatigue and monotony; however, the shift also increased accessibility to things like classes and social activities, a change especially helpful for students with disabilities. 

FEATURES 3/1/22 11:14pm

Volunteer opportunities within and beyond the hedges

Community service can look different for everyone – on campus vs. off, remote vs. in-person, weekly vs. a one-time commitment  – and something great about Houston is that it has many opportunities that Rice students can partake in. From delivering meals to donating blood, volunteering is an enriching way to fill our time, step away from studying and get involved in the communities around us.

FEATURES 3/1/22 1:31pm

COVID-19 on campus: students talk isolation this semester

As the Omicron variant led to record-high COVID-19 cases on campus in January, Rice adjusted its own policies, from the format of course delivery to the testing requirement after travel, in response. In anticipation of high case numbers among students due to the high transmissibility of the new coronavirus variant, Dean of Undergraduates Bridget Gorman announced late December that Rice may be unable to offer isolation housing to students living on campus. Should Rice run out of isolation space, students who tested positive for COVID-19 or are symptomatic would need to isolate in place.

FEATURES 2/22/22 11:37pm

‘To BeReal or not to BeReal’: Students discuss the trendy social media app

A new app has been trending on campus, promising authenticity and a new way to connect with friends and family. While Instagram revolves around photos that people can meticulously curate, BeReal is an image-based social media platform that picks a random time every day when users have to post – a condition that is supposed to encourage more natural photos. A daily upload is necessary for a user to see other people’s posts and to interact on the app; users are forced to actively participate rather than passively scroll.

FEATURES 2/22/22 11:22pm

Jasmine Manansala talks Jeopardy! experience

​​When Brown College junior Jasmine Manansala was participating in the Jeopardy! National College Championship last November, one of the implications she was pondering was the potential for her future career. She said she has made many great connections and received a lot of attention for her stint on the gameshow, which started running Feb. 8.

FEATURES 2/15/22 11:26pm

Professor Pulickel Ajayan discusses his impact on NanoEngineering

The Guinness World Record for the smallest brush belongs to a Rice professor, Pulickel Ajayan from the department of materials science and nanoengineering. Ajayan said both this and the other world record he has held — for creating the darkest material — incorporated his research on nanotubes. He applied for these records to make the research more visible.

FEATURES 2/1/22 10:53pm

Outgoing presidents look back on their terms

Rice’s 11 college presidents began their terms last spring, in the midst of a pandemic and an unsure school year. Since then, they have had to lead their residential colleges through many changes, from Constitutional rewrites to relaxed or heightened public health regulations. As their terms near their end, the Thresher invited the presidents to reflect both on themselves and their important role.

FEATURES 2/1/22 10:51pm

Driving-distance trips to make over break

The city of Houston and the state it calls home are bustling with places to explore and things to do, offering many ways to spend the upcoming spring recess, spring break and the rare weekend without reading to catch up on or problem sets to complete. Consider stepping away from Rice campus and the museum district to go on one of these trips, all accessible by car, to fill your spare time.

FEATURES 1/25/22 11:24pm

Senior Spotlight: Cynthia Chen talks making the most of an unexpected college experience

Martel College senior Cynthia Chen grew up envisioning the quintessential college life portrayed in movies and books. Having taken a semester off during her sophomore year and having spent so much time learning from home due to the pandemic, Chen said she almost felt robbed of this experience. But she has learned to accept that her college experience is turning out differently from what she originally expected.