Rice University Turns 100

An institution synonymous with Houston — Rice University — is marking its 100th anniversary. Rice started off with just seventy students in four buildings. It's now one of the top research schools in the nation.


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David Leebron says Rice University got to where it is today by following a principle laid down a century ago by Edgar Odell Lovett.

“Our founding president always said ‘keep the numbers down, and the standards up.’ And that’s really what we’ve done.”

Leebron says much of Rice’s success can be tied to the energy and resources it has invested in research.

“For example, the Bucky Ball, that was discovered at Rice University, which became the foundation of nanoscience and nanotechnology today.  And we’re known all over the world as the place that nanoscience and technology started, and our departments across the university are held in high esteem.”

Leebron says over the next hundred years, Rice will be a part of the global shift to digital learning.

“And that means students may do more of their standard learning sitting and watching a classroom and taking tests offline, then going into the classroom and having really direct interaction.”

Leebron says Rice is also building better relationships with schools around the world — so students can make seamless transfers between taking classes in Houston, and then attending a school that may be in Beijing, or Rio de Janiero.

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David Pitman

David Pitman

Host & Announcer

David was HPM's local Morning Edition host from 2009 to 2020 — when he was moved to the position of Technical Director of Houston Matters with Craig Cohen, and Town Square with Ernie Manouse. David has extensive public and commercial broadcast journalism and production experience dating back to 1993 –...

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