Rice University’s Student Newspaper — Since 1916

Monday, May 27, 2024 — Houston, TX

News





NEWS 10/28/15 5:05am

New initiative to unify entrepreneurial groups

Rice University has launched a brand new entrepreneurship initiative, dubbed Entrepreneurship@Rice, led by associate professor of finance and entrepreneurship Yael Hochberg. The initiative’s kickoff event, RECESS, brought nationally renowned businesspeople, including WordPress founder Matt Mullenwag, to campus on Oct. 22.


NEWS 10/28/15 5:02am

Hammock proposal wins design contest

Students will have a new spot for relaxing in the sun, based on the winning design “The Hangout” from the annual School of Architecture mini-charrette competition. Wiess College sophomores Yoseph Maguire and Andrew Bertics, Baker College junior Eric Hsu and Brown College sophomore Ethan Chan envisioned their project as a field of hammocks at various heights for studying and relaxing in the academic quad. 


NEWS 10/28/15 5:01am

Colleges hold NOD, SUSE Discussions

Following the release of the Survey of Unwanted Sexual Experiences results, Rice Health Advisors are incorporating discussions on consent and sexual assault into the usual residential college talks preceding Wiess College’s Night of Decadence public party this Saturday.



NEWS 10/20/15 9:21pm

Metrolab partnership means possible campus B-cycle station

Rice University’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research in collaboration with the City of Houston is examining the possibility of installing B-Cycle stations around campus to make the university an extension of Houston’s bike rental network. The initiative is an offshoot of a joint research project between Kinder and the city to study bicycle user trends with pooled data from Houston, Austin, Fort Worth and Denver. The report is due for release in November.


NEWS 10/20/15 7:53pm

Rice looks to improving experiential learning with QEP

Rice University has identified experiential learning as the focus of its next Quality Enhancement Plan, according to QEP Planning Committee co-chair Robert Stein. Rice’s reaccreditation process occurs every 10 years and requires a five-year plan to improve all students’ academic experience. The previous QEP centered on civic engagement and resulted in the creation of the Center for Civic Engagement in 2006, which has since become the Center for Civic Leadership.Stein said a committee formed in the spring of last year developed two proposals; one centered on oral and visual communication and the other on experiential learning. President David Leebron chose to pursue experiential learning. Stein said while direct implementation of the program has not been determined, the goal is to give students real-world experience.“Students [should] have an authentic experience,” Stein said. “It could be from involvement in the community, part of a laboratory study, part of a scholarly project, [or] through an internship.” According to Stein, the QEP additionally aims to improve the pedagogy of the faculty.“Every four years they zero your group, you go from 18 to 21 [years old] and I just keep getting older,” Stein said. “It is hard for a faculty member like me to retool. I have probably retooled four or five times over the course of my career.”Brown College senior Amritha Kanakamedala was the undergraduate representative on the QEP Planning Committee. She said more than 85 responses were gathered from the Rice community online in March 2015. “We set up a blog page where students, alumni, faculty and staff could propose [and vote on] ideas,” Kanakamedala said.Stein said students must be involved with the implementation of the QEP and development of curriculum.“There is a need for the students to express a preference for that type of educational experience,” Stein said. “Students tend not to see themselves as customers but rather [as] receivers of education in a passive way, and this is only going to work if the students have input in the process.”Dean of Undergraduates John Hutchinson said the results of the QEP could be larger than initially anticipated.“[The Center for Civic Leadership] was not envisioned in 2006,” Hutchinson said. “As opposed to this plugging into the current curriculum, it’s possible [this QEP] could be the foundation for a very different curriculum.”The Faculty Senate will present a plan to President Leebron in November with the aim of full implementation by the 2016-17 academic year. 


NEWS 10/20/15 7:52pm

Opportunity for meals with undergraduates extended to all faculty

Rice launched a new program sponsoring meals between undergraduate students and all faculty members, no longer just faculty associates. Initiated by Dean of Undergraduates John Hutchinson, the goal is to create a platform for conversations outside the classroom.“We would like to make it easy for faculty to have lunch or dinner with a student from time to time if they are discussing some issue of professional development or academic advising or research interests or maybe something about classwork,” Hutchinson said.Currently, faculty associates are able to have lunch with students from their respective colleges. However, this new lunch program, which launched on Oct. 14, provides an opportunity for those members of faculty who might not be able to accommodate the responsibilities of being an associate.Hutchinson said the program’s success could influence its long-term trajectory. “If it turns out that this program is immensely popular and that the faculty and students are interacting with much greater frequency, then we will expand the program next year,” Hutchinson said.


NEWS 10/20/15 7:52pm

Lonestar Scholarship created for early decision applicants to Rice

The Rice Office of Admissions announced earlier this month that up to 30 students admitted early decision will be eligible to receive the new Lonestar Scholarship, a $10,000 scholarship renewable for four years.Vice President for Enrollment Chris Munoz said the scholarship aims to alleviate potential early decision applicants’ worries that they will not be considered for merit scholarships. Munoz said early and regular decision applicants are considered equally for merit scholarships.“We [want] to make it clear to students that they are not being disadvantaged by applying early,” Munoz said.Munoz emphasized that all applicants are automatically considered for merit scholarships, including the Lonestar Scholarship, and do not need to submit a separate application. Factors such as interest in research, experience in entrepreneurial activity and leadership may increase an applicant’s chances of receiving a merit scholarship.Funding for the new scholarship will come from existing resources.


NEWS 10/20/15 7:51pm

RUPD hosts active shooter response talks, continues trainings

In response to recent shootings, Rice University Police Department is hosting lunch discussions on responding to active shooters. RUPD is also continuing its active shooter training response programs, according to Chief of Police Johnny Whitehead.Whitehead said this program, developed three years ago, consists of a 20-minute instructive video on responding to an active shooter and what to expect from law enforcement. “It is much easier to plan ahead for what you need to do rather than make decisions when you’re in a panic mode,” Whitehead said. “We want people to understand the active-shooter concept, how to develop a survival mindset, and how to develop a plan of action. “Whitehead said more than 600 members of the community have been trained to date, consisting of mainly faculty and staff. RUPD will partner with student leadership, the Dean of Undergraduates and the Dean of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies to promote trainings.“[An FBI report] shows that 45.6 percent of active-shooter incidents occur at places of commerce, like shopping malls,” Whitehead said. “Incidents at institutions of higher education account for 7.5 percent. I urge students, faculty and staff to take advantage of the very important training we have available.”The brown bag discussion luncheons will be in the Kyle Morrow Room on Oct. 21, Nov. 5, Nov. 19 and Dec. 3.


NEWS 10/20/15 7:50pm

Students reflect on jobs at Postmates, Favor

For hungry Owls waiting for a late-night food delivery, a car pulling up to campus is a welcome sight. What they might not expect is a Rice student behind the wheel delivering their pizza.Crowd-sourced mobile apps like Postmates and Favor can be found in most major cities, and in Houston where driving is a necessity, these services are highly popular. Several Rice students have taken advantage of the opportunity to work as drivers for these services, including Jones College junior Sam Carroll.Last semester, Carroll was saving money for an off-campus apartment and felt his job at the Rice Telefund was not enough.“I had gotten to the point where I said, ‘I will wait tables if I have to,’” Carroll said. “It wasn’t the most luxurious thing I’ve ever done ... but it was effective.”So he began working for Postmates and Favor in addition to the Telefund. Carroll said he found Favor paid better, since it guaranteed an hourly wage and better tips, while Postmates paid based on distance driven. Carroll said he enjoyed exploring the city, but felt that deliveries to fellow students at Rice were often uncomfortable.“It’s awkward because I have to do this, and you don’t want to look like you [are struggling financially],” Carroll said. “Everyone else seems to not struggle with money and financial situations, or at least it seems that way at Rice, like everyone seems to be doing everything perfectly.”Martel College senior JJ Allred said he decided to work for Favor during the summer because of the ease of entry into the position. Allred worked the late shift, from 8 p.m. to 3 a.m. However, he found 3 a.m. to be an unreliable end time.“You don’t get off at three; you’re off whenever you’re done with whatever got ordered,” Allred said. “People on weekends get home at 2:40 [a.m.] and they order something, and there’s only 12 people on shift usually, so you get slammed with two orders at 2:40, and then you don’t get home until four in the morning.”He also said he was suspicious of Favor’s management. Favor deliverers report to their shift moderators when they have a problem with a customer. However, Allred speculated that moderators sometimes gave free orders to friends.“You can tell they know each other because if you have a problem with a customer, you just text the moderator ‘Hey, this person’s doing whatever,’ and then they say ‘Oh, he’s always like that, just leave it on the door, he’ll pay for it later’ or something,” Allred said. Payments are not well-documented, and deliverers are not paid until three days after the delivery. Many employees do hundreds of deliveries a week and forget to check specific payments.Allred said some customers never paid at all. He recalled one who ordered $200 worth of food. Allred was excited about the large tip he would receive, but the customer never paid.“People steal all the time,” Allred said.Nevertheless, Allred said he feels he was compensated fairly, averaging $10 to $11 per hour.Both Carroll and Allred said they would recommend their jobs to Rice students who want quick or extra spending money. However, for students who want a more substantial income, Allred recommends looking elsewhere.“I think I would do it again,” Allred said. “But only as a summer job.”



NEWS 10/20/15 7:47pm

Rice shows support at HERO rally

Rice University students were among the dozens of volunteers campaigning in support of the Houston Equal Rights Ordinance, a broad anti-discrimination law, on Saturday at the Rally for HERO. Early voting began on Monday, Oct. 19 and Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 3.HERO is a measure to protect individuals from discrimination in employment, housing and public spaces based on several characteristics, including race, marital status, sexual orientation and gender identity. Saturday’s rally was organized by Houston Unites as part of a grassroots effort to pass Proposition 1, or HERO. Volunteers canvassed door to door and called voters, asking them to commit to voting in favor of HERO, as well as helping them plan when they would vote and secure free transportation to the polls. Martel College senior Kathryn Hokamp became heavily involved with the campaign after experiencing hostile reactions from HERO opponents while volunteering as a canvasser. On Saturday, Hokamp, a former president of Rice Queers and Allies, led a group of canvassers.“We definitely made some impact [by] educating people about the issues and helping people to remember to vote,” Hokamp said. “The impact may seem small, but we get votes one person at a time, so every little thing we can do matters.”According to Caroline Duble, Campus Outreach Coordinator for Houston Unites, volunteers spoke with over one thousand voters citywide on Saturday, exceeding the campaign’s goals for the day. Rice is part of the Greater Houston Partnership, an economic development organization comprised of over 1,200 companies and organizations that has supported HERO since 2014. Rice President David Leebron is among the 44 signatories of a series of full-page advertisements run in the Houston Chronicle paid for by the Business Coalition for Prop 1.“Rice supports equal rights for all Houstonians,” Rice spokesperson David Ruth said.According to the Houston Business Journal, Houston Texans owner Bob McNair, who recently donated $8 million to Rice, has donated $10,000 to a campaign against HERO. McNair said the proposition should be rewritten to encourage more unity within the community. McNair has since rescinded his donation.In 2014, the Houston City Council originally passed HERO by an 11-6 vote. Shortly afterwards,  opponents of HERO delivered a petition with around 50,000 signatures to City Hall to repeal the ordinance or put it to a vote on the ballot. City Attorney David Feldman found several technical issues with the petition. Opponents of HERO filed a lawsuit against the city, claiming Feldman had “wrongly determined that they had not gathered enough valid signatures” to trigger a repeal or referendum.In January, a judge ruled HERO opponents had not collected enough valid signatures. The opponents appealed to the Texas Supreme Court, and the court ruled in July that the Houston City Council must either repeal the ordinance or include it in the November 2015 ballot.Although recent polls have found that a majority of Houstonians support HERO, Mark Jones, Chair of Political Science at Rice, said he warned against taking the polls at face value.“You have to be cautious when people say ‘I’m undecided,’” Jones said. “About three quarters of them actually are hidden ‘no’ votes. When you take that into account, the polls suggest that this is really neck and neck.”Edit: Noted how McNair has since rescinded his donation to HERO opponents.


NEWS 10/20/15 7:46pm

Farmer’s market food sourcing, weekly menus promote sustainability in serveries

As Real Food Week kicks off,  students may find themselves wondering about the food sourcing process behind the food prepared in the serveries.  A closer look reveals the steps Housing and Dining is taking toward sustainability, including creating weekly menus based on availability of seasonal ingredients and sourcing regularly from the Farmers Market. Each of the head chefs at the six serveries are responsible for food sourcing, weekly menu determination and independently purchasing food. According to Senior Business Director of H&D David McDonald, menus are often based on a rotational system at other universities, where the food served for each meal is determined months in advance. McDonald said he was critical of a cycled menu, since problems such as a blight in produce or a recall on a certain item could occur.“Just look at the current situation: The market is experiencing a massive shortage of eggs that’s severely affected our egg supply,” McDonald said. “So imagine if you had an egg-heavy menu published three months ago, and you didn’t know this was going to happen — you’d have a serious problem on your hands.”Head chefs research prices, look into reports from seafood and produce companies, talk to local farmers, and based on that information, determine the menus for the next week at their respective serveries. “Because we know exactly what’s available to us, we don’t have to guess — we can plan and cook based on real time information,” Campus Dining Director Chef Johnny Curet said. “The flexibility allows for menu modifications to be made in case of unanticipated food source changes.”Richard Johnson, director of the Rice Administrative Center for Sustainability and Energy Management, said the system minimizes food waste and maximizes cost efficiency. “If you have a better sense, in the moment, of what’s going to be available, and where you can get it and what the prices are going to look like, you’re going to make decisions that will be less wasteful,” Johnson said.The serveries’ primary food supplier is Houston-based Sysco, according to McDonald. Around 20 to 25 percent of ingredients are sourced locally within a 200-250 mile-radius including seafood, poultry and Blue Bell ice cream. Due to the limited range of in-season produce in Texas, however, it is difficult to increase the percentage of locally-sourced foods.“If we were in Salinas, California, I could easily purchase 80 percent of my product from nearby farms,” McDonald explained. “Here in Houston, a 250-mile radius doesn’t leave us with many options, besides lots of okra and oranges.”Another food source is the Farmer’s Market, which currently accounts for less than 10 percent of the food purchased by the serveries. The market is owned and operated by Rice, and the chefs began directly purchasing from the market around two years ago. Hardwick said that H&D has worked hard to streamline the process of ordering and delivery, and these steps have made it easier for chefs to incorporate ingredients from the Farmers Market into their menu.“Each week, they’ll call in and let us know what they need, and we let them know what we have growing right now or ready to harvest in the future,” Gage Lydahl from Atkinson Farms said. “Besides supporting the Farmers Market, Rice University helps us by purchasing around $400 to $500 of produce weekly.”The local vendors are limited in production capability and selection, however. McDonald said with the sheer volume of food that is produced for each meal at the serveries, the largest farm vendor at the market would not even be able to supply Rice for a single lunch. “We try to purchase whatever they have, and as much as they have,” Glenn said. “Some examples of items we’ve purchased include local honey for National Honey Month and free-range bison meat for tacos at Seibel.”Manager of Communications Susann Glenn said that purchasing from the local farmers contributes to the sustainability of the local economy, especially in cases of surpluses, when Rice can purchase the excess and freeze it for later use.“The farmers like that sense of security, knowing that if they have extra product, we’ll take it off their hands — that’s financial stability for them,” Glenn said. “And it means the world to them.”  Real Food Revolution is a student organization focused on increasing support for local foods and sustainable farming practices, and they have partnered with H&D on multiple occasions to host events like Farm to Fork dinners. Co-President Belle Douglass said she acknowledged the challenges of purchasing locally, but added that there are ways the university can take even more advantage of what Houston and surrounding farms have to offer. “Our chefs are so talented that the fact that local options change with the seasons shouldn’t be a reason not to buy locally,” Douglass, a Martel College senior,  said. “Additionally, buying locally can at times be more expensive than buying in bulk from other sources, so if we want to see an increase in local food then perhaps a change to the way food budgets are structured might help. Setting a required amount to be purchased locally might be an option to explore.”Another food source is found in the on-campus gardens, a club currently run by Rice Community Growers, inspired by Joseph Novak’s Community Garden course (EBIO 204).“Although the gardens last year did not produce enough for regular use by the serveries, we did supply the chefs with some herbs — mostly basil, parsley and cilantro, and sometimes lettuce and arugula,” Lovett College junior Emma Livingston, who had taken Novak’s course, said.H&D is working on further ways to support sustainability in food sourcing, McDonald said. Purchasing imperfect produce for use in the kitchens is one initiative in progress. “Most of these items can’t be sold retail — the quality and taste is just as good, but people won’t buy them in grocery stores because they are oddly shaped, or have blemishes,” McDonald said. “It’s a consumable product that’s not being utilized; if those items don’t get bought from a farm, they will be thrown away.”Douglass said the weekly menu creation permits chefs to take suggestions into consideration when planning the next week’s meals.“Housing and Dining takes suggestions [from the Rice Dining website] seriously and the best way to have a voice in what you’re eating is to engage with the people who are making it,” Douglass said. “If you want to see more local food, tell your chef!” 


NEWS 10/15/15 6:19am

RPC to hold 2015 Esperanza in Hyatt Regency Houston, allows ticket resales

The Rice Program Council will hold Esperanza, its annual fall formal, on Nov. 14 in the downtown Hyatt Regency Houston hotel. Themed a “Night at Skyfall,” the dance has 1600 tickets — slightly less than last year’s eventual 1700, but at the same price of $20 — and will feature student DJ Josh Masimore.


NEWS 10/15/15 6:11am

First Democratic debate draws students

Over 30 students attended a debate party organized by Rice Students for Bernie on Tuesday night to watch the first Democratic debate of the 2016 presidential campaign.On stage were Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton and Vermont Senator and self-described democratic socialist Bernie Sanders. Clinton has been slipping in the polls to Sanders since Sanders announced his candidacy in April, but still holds a considerable lead for the Democratic primary.Also on the stage were former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley, former Rhode Island Senator and governor Lincoln Chafee and former Virginia Senator Jim Webb, all of whom are polling at less than one percent, according to a Pew Research Center poll.According to Rice Students For Bernie President Alex Amari, O’Malley performed the strongest out of the underdog candidates.“I don’t think it was a breakthrough performance for either [Chafee or Webb], whereas O’Malley probably had the most to gain from tonight because he’s in a position where people know him,” Amari, a Jones College sophomore, said. “I think he did a great job and I would not be surprised at all if he was selected for vice president.”Lovett College junior Bridget Schilling noted the difference tones of the Democratic debate and the two Republican debates of the 2016 campaign.“I thought there was a lot more solidarity between candidates,” Schilling said. “They were talking about what their stances on the issues were, as opposed to attacking each other.”The candidates debated both foreign and domestic policy topics during the 2.5-hour debate, covering topics like income and racial inequality. Other topics included the use of military force, national security, tax reform, mass incarceration and gun control.As of Tuesday night, Duncan College freshman Maurice Frediere said he had not decided if he will support Sanders or Clinton, but said that Sanders’ stance on gun control was weak compared to some of the other candidates.“Sanders was not as strong of a debater I hoped he would be,” Frediere said. “He was hit with some good shots from O’Malley and Clinton on guns. He just didn’t have as strong a policy laid out as either O’Malley or Clinton did.”But for other students, the debate cemented their opinions of the candidates.Jones College sophomore Simone Holmes said Sander’s passionate performance during the debate bolstered her support for him.“The debate strengthened my convictions as I was able to hear Sanders advocate or defend his stances,” Holmes said. “He compellingly promoted free college tuition [at public colleges], fighting institutional racism and improving environmental quality.”Wiess College sophomore Alex Bergin-Newman said she was undecided between Sanders and Clinton prior to the debate, but that Clinton’s performance in the debate eventually won her over.“The pressure of the debate seemed to be getting to [Sanders],” Bergin-Newman said. “That raised some serious concerns for me about how he would be able to handle the pressure of a presidency when the pressure of a debate was too much.”Amari said increasing interest in politics at Rice is an essential part of Rice Students For Bernie’s mission.“[One of the goals of the watch party] was to get people interested in politics and have people coming out and talking about the debate, and it was great to see that tonight,” Amari said. “I feel like I learned a lot tonight from talking to other people there, and apart from supporting Bernie, that is really our goal here.”


NEWS 10/15/15 6:03am

SA hosts discussion on Survey on Unwanted Sexual Experiences results

Over 300 students attended the Student Association “It’s Up to Us” meeting to discuss the results of the Survey on Unwanted Sexual Experiences. Students discussed the possibilities of creating a mandatory sexual education course, improving Orientation Week programming and encouraging casual, everyday discussions on sexual violence. The SA offered a free television to the college with the most members attending the meeting; the winner will be announced at Senate on Oct. 14.SA President Jazz Silva said this meeting was not intended to inform the student body, but to allow for a discussion to occur.“This is our time to listen to you all, and your time to listen to each other,” Silva, a Sid Richardson College senior, said. “This is 95 percent going to be a discussion. If you leave here and you had something to say and you held it in, that's not going to feel so good.”Before Silva opened the floor to student comments, representatives of the SA Wellbeing Committee, the Students Transforming Rice Into a Violence-Free Environment Coalition and Rice Women’s Resource Center presented briefly on the resources and services they offer, as well as their plans to address sexual assault. The RWRC also reviewed the results of the survey itself.Dean of Undergraduates John Hutchinson said he felt the conversation surrounding the SUSE results indicated students feel the culture of care is only in reference to alcohol, and said he affirmed its application to all aspects of wellbeing."Despite the efforts we have made, there is serious violence taking place on this campus and people are being hurt,” Hutchinson said. “It is incumbent on everyone in the community to stop the violence and make sure no one gets hurt."Hutchinson said he encouraged all resources at Rice and the entire student body to partner with the administration and take a national leadership role in addressing sexual assault.Silva began the discussion by asking whether students were surprised by the SUSE results.Several students said they did not feel O-Week emphasized the prevention of sexual assault enough."We see this 1 in 4 women, 1 in 14 guys [experiencing sexual misconduct] —that's a cultural problem,” one freshman said. “That's the culture at Rice. We need to hammer in during O-Week that culture of care not only applies to alcohol but sexual misconduct as well.”However, Jones O-Week coordinator Akeem Ogunkeye warned against viewing O-Week as a fix-all for culturally rooted issues and said students may barely remember what they learned.“O-Week is just a week and there's only so much time we have,” Ogunkeye, a junior, said. ”At the residential college level, we can have discussions continually that happen more than just during O-Week.”Several students, including Silva, said they agreed it was important to address the fact that entering students have varying degrees of sexual education and experience. Claire Randolph, a representative of the Queer Resource Center, said she thought it was necessary to bring all students to a basic level of sexual education, including definitions of consent and sexual violence, through an avenue other than O-Week presentations.“Around 40 percent of our students are from Texas, and Texas does not have mandatory sexual education in schools,” Randolph, a Jones College junior, said. “It's abstinence-only. If there's a baseline lack of understanding, it can't be fixed in one session."Martel College senior Abigail Rodgers said she wanted Rice administration to make the qualitative information from the survey available so students could understand when and where sexual violence is occurring on campus. Associate Dean of Undergraduates Matthew Taylor said the third-party data analysis group had not yet provided the qualitative information but that there are plans to acquire the data.One student said she felt the Rice community lacked casual discussion of sexual assault.“"We as a community need to just talk about it — you can go to dinner and you can take the time to talk about [sexual assault],” she said. “That's something that anybody can do."Students also spoke negatively of the prevalence of relationship violence, the closeness of the college system and the isolation felt by unhappy students because of Rice’s title as having the happiest students.Hutchinson said he agreed that putting meaning to the numbers of sexual assault through personal stories is important, but survivors cannot be expected to share their experiences.“You can't put any pressure on anybody to share their story,” Hutchinson said. “You just have to be willing to listen when people are ready to talk.”Hutchinson said any further information-gathering will be done after consulting with undergraduate and graduate students."We are cognizant of the fact that people can get survey fatigue, particularly when it is a survey about an extremely challenging subject that might be personally difficult for some individuals,” Hutchinson said. “We don't want to just randomly keep going back with more and more questions. It has to be done very thoughtfully.”Silva said the student body would use this information to move forward and come up with solutions together."This is not the SA who's going to solve this problem,” Silva said. It's not the administration that's going to solve this problem. It's all of us."


NEWS 10/9/15 6:46am

Hoot doing better than expected two months after move

The Hoot’s move from the north and south locations to the central location at the Rice Memorial Center is approaching its two-month anniversary.Initially the Hoot accepted that they might not do as well at their new location.“We were prepared to not do as well this semester because of the initial change, but we are doing way better than any of us expected,” general manager Joanna Weedlun said.Weedlun has been general manager of the Hoot since April 2014. Weedlun, a Hanszen College senior, said the Hoot’s move was strategic.“We wanted to move to a location that was central on campus [where] we could streamline our operation,” Weedlun said.The Hoot expected to lose revenue initially after this move but has been pleasantly surprised by the results thus far.“We came in and thought that this was going to be a great move for us down the line, but we have found that we are already exceeding business we thought we would do,” said Weedlun.The Hoot’s finance manager Amy White said the move has not contributed to a net gain or loss in revenue.“Looking at the data now, we are on par with our figures from last year,” White, a Duncan College junior, said.The Hoot is very happy with the consolidation effort, since they can now operate more efficiently from the one location.“The move has made it logistically a lot easier and saved expenses [with regards to] delivery to two locations and employees [for example],” White said. “From what we have seen this semester, we are very happy that we moved and are excited to see what the future will bring.”Even though the Hoot is satisfied with its move, some students are still disgruntled. Martel College sophomore Austin Au-Yeung was upset by the move.“I don’t look at the Hoot for [a] late night snack anymore because of the walk,” Au-Yeung said.Weedlun and the rest of the Hoot managers realized the potential inconvenience of the walk but believed it would actually be serving a greater part of the student body coming from buildings like Fondren Library and Anderson Hall.  “We knew moving the Hoot would be easier for people in academic buildings,” Weedlun said. “Also, the Hoot’s goal is to serve all of Rice, not just undergraduates. The move and increasing our operating hours enables us to serve the graduate student population as well.”For now, the Hoot seems content with the changes.Other student-run businesses have noticed the move as well.Martel College junior David Behrend, the current finance manager of Coffeehouse, said he noticed the change that the Hoot has brought to the student center.“In terms of sales, we haven’t seen a change in our numbers. However it seems like there are more people in Coffeehouse and the RMC in general at later hours than in previous semesters,” Behrend said.Jones College senior Victoria Chen, finance manager of Willy's Pubs said the Hoot’s move has been beneficial for Willy’s Pub.“I wouldn’t say the Hoot brings us more sales, but it does make the experience of trivia and Thursday a little better,” Chen said. “Having the Hoot enables our bartenders to sell more drinks, which is where we make most of the money, rather than wasting time making food.”