Explore Your Campus Dining Options

We are in full swing with our fall classes! If you are coming to campus after work or if you are meeting friends before class, Rice University has some great dining options for you to try.

Food Trucks

Visiting food trucks park on Mudd Loop Road (in between the Mudd Building and Hamman Hall).

On Campus Schedule:
Trucks serve from 5:30 p.m. until 9 p.m.:

Follow Rice Dining on Twitter for updates, @RiceDining

Flo Paris

Inside the glass-walled Brochstein Pavilion is Flo-Paris, offering salads, sandwiches, specialty coffees and wine. You can enjoy your meal in the hub of campus overlooking our marvelous lawns.

Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Saturday – Sunday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Ambassador Chinese

Ambassador Chinese operates a satellite restaurant in the Rice Student Center inside Willy’s Pub. They offer traditional dishes using only fresh, high-quality ingredients. Come by and get fast, fresh food. Tetra, cash and credit accepted.

Monday to Friday 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

4.Tac0

Pronounced Four Point Tac OH – Featuring homemade tortillas, carefully crafted recipes that use fresh ingredients and incredible service. These are just three things that make 4.Tac0 THE place for tacos on campus. Our chefs have added delicious chips and queso, Mexican street corn, and made-to-order baked potatoes (a potato is kind of like a taco, right?). 4.Tac0 is conveniently located in the heart of the Rice Student Center, near the bookstore.

Monday – Friday 7:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. Breakfast

Monday and Wednesday 11:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Tuesday, Thursday and Friday 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Whoo Deli

The Whoo Deli is located in the Rice Student Center inside of Sammy’s. The deli features sandwiches made-to-order with dozens of fresh ingredients and a multitude of breads. The menu also includes one to two soups of the day and a variety of side dishes including delicious salads. The Whoo Deli is open to Rice students, faculty, staff and visitors.

Monday – Friday11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

Valhalla

Before or after class, you can enjoy a beer and snacks in Rice’s famous graduate student-run Valahalla Pub.

Monday to Friday 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Lunch (Food & Drink) 4:00 p.m. -2 a.m.
Saturday CLOSED
Sunday7 p.m. -2 a.m.

Rice Farmers Market

Snack on some food samples, macarons, a smoothie or just knock out some grocery shopping while you are waiting for class to start.

Tuesday, rain or shine 3:30 p.m. until 6:30 p.m.

Visit their website to see the complete list of vendors and special events: http://dining.rice.edu/farmers-market/

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Discover Rice PSM on the Road

Check out the dates and locations below to see if we will be in your city! Be sure to stop by and chat with us and find out more information about our wonderful 4 Professional Science Master’s programs we have at Rice University.

Wednesday, September 13th- Texas A&M University

Thursday, September 14th- UT Dallas

Friday, September 15th- Baylor University

Thursday, September 20th- Saint Thomas University

Tuesday, September 25th- Brown University

Wednesday, September 26th- Cornell University

Thursday, September 27th- Rochester Institute of Technology

Monday, October 1st- Purdue University

Tuesday, October 2nd- University of Illinois, Urbana Champagne

Monday, October 15th- Georgia Tech

Tuesday, October 16th- Emory University

Wednesday, October 17th- University of Georgia

Monday, October 22nd- Duke University

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Life in Houston as an International Student

International students studying in the United States often have to deal with culture shock. Everything’s different from home. Attitudes, fashions, social expectations, architecture — even the food is unfamiliar. It takes a little time to get comfortable to your new surroundings. Sometimes you just long for a little slice of home.

That’s what makes Houston, Texas so enticing for foreign students. In Houston, you can find that little piece of home when you need it. The fourth largest city in the United States and a major economic center, Houston is home to over 100 different nationalities, giving the city a cosmopolitan, multiethnic feel. In addition to being the fourth largest city in the U.S., Houston is also the most racially and ethnically diverse of the country’s 10 most populous metropolitan areas.

College Student Associations

Most colleges with foreign student bodies have an International Student Association, which can answer student questions and help you adapt to life and study in the U.S.A. There are currently many different International Clubs at Rice. In addition to student clubs, your college may offer workshops to introduce international students to important aspects of studying and living in the United States.

The Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS) offers many services and resources to international students such as:

  • Orientation upon arrival at the university
  • Workshops on income taxes and the IRS, healthcare and insurance, immigration status, and more
  • Social gatherings – welcome party, dinner for new graduate students, activities fair, cultural movies, and Graduate Student Association (GSA) party
  • Rice Host Family Program (sponsored by the Houston chapter of the International Institute of Education)

Houston-area families open their homes to students from other countries, giving them a place to go for holidays, spring break, birthday celebrations, or simply a brief escape from academics.

Spouse of Internationals at Rice organization: Plans lunches and other events for wives and international women students.

Housing and Living Expenses

Houston has one of the lowest costs of living in the United States, so food and housing are all cheaper than you’d find in other metropolitan areas. International students who decide to find accommodations off-campus find rental properties very affordable.

The low cost of living is due, in part, to the city’s diverse and thriving industries. Over 23 Fortune 500 companies call Houston home, often offering internships and educational opportunities to students. Medical students may have a chance to work at the Texas Medical Center, the largest medical center in the world. Houston also includes NASA’s Johnson Space Center.

Tastes of Home

The U.S. News and World Report ranks Houston as the third most ethnically diverse city in the United States of America. Houston’s multiethnic population provides opportunities for international students. Restaurants, music festivals and community organizations all reflect the city’s diversity, so homesick students can often find familiar sights, sounds and tastes when they need a little home-based comfort.

Every year, at the end of April, the city hosts the Houston International Festival, a two-day celebration of the city’s cultural diversity. The festival offers a chance for students to volunteer and introduce their new-found American friends to their own culture.

Are you interested in applying to graduate school? Explore Rice University’s Professional Science Master’s programs and contact us if you need any personalized advice. 

Importance of Networking as a Graduate Student

Networking is about building and maintaining relationships with people which may lead to a mutually beneficial exchange at some point in the future. Typically, the result of the exchange will influence one’s professional development.

Is networking just about furthering my career?

No. Most people think of networking as making contacts for a job or business deal. However, networking is not about short-term or temporary connections. Networking involves establishing and building professional relationships that you will maintain over a significant period of time. In our experiences, we have found that over the years your professional contacts will even become your social friends.

Why should I bother networking?

Have you heard the phrase, “it is not what you know but who you know?” We often tell our students that what you know gets you in the room but it is who you know that will get you a seat at the table. You should network if you are passionate about your field and want to be engaged in the discipline. Networking allows you to exchange resources with others (e.g., helping one another), and it can provide you with social support, as well as trusted colleagues who you can turn to as a sounding board. Furthermore, a little networking has the potential to expand your contact list exponentially.

When you network and make a new contact, suddenly there is potential for you to now have access to all the contacts that individual has made. It may be the case that your skill level or expertise is needed by someone your original contact knows and they put you two in touch with each other. By making a single contact, now you’ve made two. This in turn can lead to additional contacts and so forth.

How do I get started?

Many times you can network through your current faculty members. As a student, it may be the case that your faculty member asks you to reach out to one of their contacts to secure information (i.e., sample survey for a project, archival data, etc.). Although this may seem like a chore, it’s actually a great opportunity to make a connection with someone in the field (i.e., get your foot in the door). Later, you can follow up with this contact at an event such as a conference.

This leads us to another common place to network: at conferences. Conferences will sometimes have social hours which you can attend to meet people. If you are attending a  conference, check the schedule for breakfast discussion groups or evening social hours and take advantage of these opportunities.

If you do not feel comfortable attending events with a social focus, you can also network at talks and poster sessions at conferences. These events provide a natural opportunity for you to meet individuals and exchange ideas. In fact, presenters want you to attend their sessions. No presenter wants to give a talk to an empty room. You are helping them by attending, showing an interest in their work, and asking relevant questions.

What exactly do I need to do?

Whether you are following-up with a referral from a faculty member or going to a conference, it is important to be prepared. For example, if you are going to a conference, find out ahead of time who is attending that you might want to meet. Prepare some questions in advance should you have the opportunity to meet these individuals. This will help reduce some of your stress.

What should I not do?

  • Don’t get overwhelmed. You do not have to become a networking guru overnight. Rather, select a few networking events to attend and keep in mind you do not have to stay the entire time.
  • Don’t forget social etiquette. We hope you are very excited to start meeting new colleagues. But, do not forget social etiquette. For example, do not interrupt a presentation to introduce yourself to the speaker. Instead, wait until the presentation is over and follow-up with the speaker then. Similarly, don’t walk up to a poster and interrupt someone else asking questions. Wait until it is your turn to ask a question or join the ongoing conversation at an appropriate time.

Are you interested in applying to graduate school? Explore Rice University’s Professional Science Master’s programs and contact us if you need any personalized advice. 

10 Tips for Balancing Work, Family, and Graduate Studies

1. Balance work, family, and grad school by communicating early and often.

Perhaps the most important thing you can do to help yourself is communicate. Communicate with your professors, employer, and family early and often. Let everyone know what is going on, and what they can expect from your schedule and your time in the coming months/years. This isn’t a get out of jail free card – you still have to show up for work on time, turn in your assignments, and see your family, but everyone will be much more understanding if you prepare them ahead of time.

2. A calendar is your best friend when juggling various aspects of your personal, professional, and academic life.

A key to balancing everything is staying organized. This is where a calendar comes in handy. Calendars offer structure and a tangible way to plan out your days and weeks. You are also less likely to forget to pick up your daughter from ballet if it is written down.

At the beginning of each semester, fill your calendar with your obligations for work, school, and family. A great way to keep your family in the loop, is to put everything in a Google calendar and sync it with your spouse, parents, significant other, etc.

3. But also … be flexible when handling your multiple daily responsibilities.

Calendars are a great way to stay on top of everything, but at the same time be careful not to overbook yourself. If you schedule every minute of your day from 6AM – 11PM, it can be very hard to adjust when things change (and they will). Leaving some flexibility in your daily schedule will allow you to stay on track when an unexpected meeting comes up at work or when your study group goes over.

4. Self-care is imperative when prioritizing your academic schedule and personal life.

Caring for yourself is almost always the first thing to fall by the wayside when you get busy. As hard as it is to make time for self-care, if you make it a priority, you will see the benefits. Self-care is different for everyone, but basics include eating well, exercising, and trying to get some sleep (we know – what is sleep?) If you take care of your body, it will enable your mind to function more efficiently.

5. Be intentional with your time during particular hectic times, whether at work, school, or home.

This goes hand in hand with using a calendar. You have planned out every area of your life. It may seem obvious, but be intentional with that time. Try not to study while at your son’s soccer game or send work emails during a scheduled study hour. Sometimes multitasking can leave you feeling like you got little bits done but nothing fully completed.

6. Be easy on yourself when planning out your school and extracurricular activities.

Take a look at your daily and weekly responsibilities – how can you make life easy for yourself? Maybe this means simplifying your life or out-sourcing tasks, like having Amazon deliver your groceries. Perhaps you designate some time at the beginning of each week to meal-prep, so breakfast, lunch, and dinner is grab-and-go.

7. Rely on friends and family when juggling your many responsibilities gets difficult.

No one said you had to do this alone, so build a support system. Gather your friends and family and ask for their help. Be specific about what you need and how they can help you. If people have offered help, don’t feel bad accepting. They love you and want you to succeed.

8. Designate a study space and allow yourself to make it a haven for academic innovation.

Decide where you will study and only study there. Studying in the same place consistently follows the same principle as muscle memory for sports. By studying in the same location, you train your mind and body to remember that this is a place set aside for study. This helps you get into your rhythm faster and study more efficiently.

9. Remind yourself why you’ve committed to balancing work, family, and a master’s program.

When life gets really overwhelming, take a moment to step back and remind yourself why you decided to go to grad school. Maybe it is to pursue a new professional career or to provide better for your family. Whatever the reason, remind yourself and use that as motivation to persevere.

10. Remember that there’s an end in sight!

Graduate school is a temporary challenge! This chaotic part of life is only temporary, and it is important to remember that. Try not to get overwhelmed. Take life one day at a time, and focus on doing your best in this moment. You will succeed. You CAN do this!

Are you interested in applying to graduate school? Explore Rice University’s Professional Science Master’s programs and contact us if you need any personalized advice. 

Secrets to Successful Interviewing

So, it’s the day of the interview. Emotions and fear are battling one another for control. Fear lurks under self-assurance. Nervousness and doubt eat away at your confidence. As you self-destruct, all chances for a new job go out the window. Sound familiar? How many times have you been on the losing side of an interview? In today’s tough business climate and economic slowdown, finding the right job is more critical than ever. Demanding schedules and obligations limit the number of opportunities we can research and that means that we have to make every interview count. To gain a competitive advantage, you must practice a few basic skills.

Create a good resume

Start with a well-crafted, one to two page, chronologically, organized resume. Have a brief but detailed summary of your duties and responsibilities for each position held. Include job title, company name and specific months and years of employment. Employers want to know how your experience can add value so list 1 to 3 quantifiable accomplishments for each position.

Craft an elevator pitch

Once your resume is complete, start practicing. Most interviews start with a “tell me about yourself” question so create a well-crafted 30 to 45 second speech that summarizes who you are, your strengths and why you are interested in the opportunity. This is your personal brand statement so be creative and use your resume as a guide.

Do your homework

Summarize your career in a clear and logical manner explaining how well they relate to the job in question.  Convey your strengths with confidence and enthusiasm and explain how you will add value to the team, company and its customers. Bring work samples or create a run-down of previous projects and prepare to explain how you can bring solutions to the company.

Do your homework and learn as much as you can about the company. Review profiles on LinkedIn, visit competitor websites and prepare to give your impressions of the organization. The extra research will build your confidence and it will help you ask more insightful questions.

Remember the basics

Dress to impress, arrive early, bring several copies of your resume and make sure you turn off your cell phone. Speak clearly, show good posture and answer all questions thoroughly. Avoid answering questions with a simple yes or no response. Ask smart questions, and remember, an interview is a two way street. The interviewer needs to question you to assess your skills, and you must determine whether the company offers the kind of growth and advancement you are seeking. Ask the employer to describe the position early in the interview process. This strategy will determine if the positon is a good fit for your skills, and it will give you the opportunity to describe how you are as a good match for the job.

Think long term

Avoid questions that are not immediately relevant to the duties of the job such as salary, vacation and benefits. These questions are often viewed as inappropriate and a big turn off in the first meeting. Instead, focus on strategic questions that will help you determine what challenges or gaps the organizations is looking to solve. Once the interview concludes, ask the employer if they have any concerns about your background or about your ability to perform the job. Posing the question provides an opportunity to overcome any negative first impressions and it allows you to address any misconceptions about your skills.

The Close

Finally, if you are interested in the position, ask for the job. Surprisingly, many applicants leave the interview without ever expressing their interest.  For example, you may want to say something like: “I am interested in what I have learned so far, and I would like to proceed to the next step.” Don’t get discouraged if you don’t get an offer the day of the interview. In most cases, it is standard procedure to go through several interviews before an offer is extended.

Express Gratitude

Regardless of the outcome, send a thank you note that same day and follow-up with a phone call to reiterate your interest within three business days. Keep in mind that preparation improves your chances of successOften, the difference between one candidate and the next is preparation. Your resume may secure the interview, but it’s your ability to convey your knowledge, skills and abilities that will land you the job.

Living In Houston: Houston is a place you can call home.

Rice University is located in the heart of Houston, TX. In addition to being the fourth largest city in the U.S., Houston is also the most racially and ethnically diverse of the country’s 10 most populous metropolitan areas. We capitalize upon our position as home to the second largest concentration of Fortune 1000 companies in the country and our relationships with corporate entities within the world’s largest medical complex and the energy capital of the world located right here in our backyard.

The Houston metro area has always attracted people with an entrepreneurial spirit. These days, it’s also a premier destination for those who want to work at some of the country’s largest companies. Because Houston is not only the hub of the oil and gas industries (and known as the “energy capital of the world”), it’s also a major center of manufacturing and health care.

Houston also boasts more than 11,000 restaurants with everything from award-winning establishments like Underbelly to barbecue joints like Gatlin’s BBQ. The metro area also offers a variety of international cuisine ranging from Ethiopian to Indian.

Our students avail themselves of the rich cultural life that Houston has to offer with its many business and cultural districts – Rice Village and the Museum District (our home), the Energy Corridor, the Theater District and the Galleria/Uptown Park shopping district, to name a few. Much like the students we attract, Houston is a city that is multifaceted and ambitious. Consider:

  • There are more than 145 languages spoken here.
  • Houston is a truly international city: 1 in 4 Houstonians relocated here from outside the U.S.
  • The Port of Houston ranks first in U.S. foreign tonnage.
  • Houston ranks as a top 10 greenest city, with more than 128 miles of hike and bike trails along our parks and bayou system.
  • Our low cost of living means Houston ranks 1st among U.S. cities where paychecks stretch the farthest.
  • Places to worship include 37 megachurches, 40 synagogues and numerous temples and other denomination and faith-based opportunities.
  • Houston hosts the third largest concentration of consular offices, representing 86 nations.
  • We are home to professional football, soccer, baseball and basketball teams.
  • Resident companies in ballet, opera, symphony and theatre thrive in Houston.
  • As a “Third Coast” city, Houston provides easy access to beaches and pier attractions.
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Rice University’s Running Trail Loop: The loop is roughly 3 miles and most of the route is lined with beautiful old oak trees whose branches overlap the trail.

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Leisurely kayak around Kinder Lake at Discovery Green® and enjoy all the fish swimming beneath the surface.

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Enjoy the city’s views while walking or jogging

Are you interested in applying to graduate school? Explore Rice University’s Professional Science Master’s programs and contact us if you need any personalized advice. 

Are you looking for ways to earn some extra money whilst pursuing your studies?

During the school year, the best jobs are part-time and flexible, leaving room for class attendance and homework. Here are seven great jobs for college students.

1. Tutoring

If you’re strong in a particular subject, consider turning your knowledge and hard work into a tutor-ing job. You can apply to work at your campus’ tutoring center, or try going it on your own. The up-side of working on campus will be access to manuals, books, and a study space, but you will probably not be paid a ton. If you strike out on your own, you can ask for a higher wage, but you will have to work to drum up your own business, and provide your own materials and study location. 

2. Office Positions 

Many campus offices seek part-time office assistants to help with their department’s work load.

3. Recreation Center Staff

The recreation center on campus needs attendants year round and has a variety of jobs that can be performed part-time.

4. Freelance writing

Get experience with writing, meeting deadlines, and working with editors by doing some freelance writing work. This is also a good chance to build up a body of work to show future employers. Earn money writing blog posts, articles, and other content. You may even receive some career advice and make contacts in journalism that will help you get a job later. 

5. Editing and proofreading

You’re probably spending a lot of time writing, editing, and proofreading your college papers, so why not take those skills and make money with them. You can find work doing academic editing and proofreading.

6. Website testing

You can make money visiting websites and apps and reviewing their features and performance for companies such as UserTesting. Expect to earn $10 per 20 minute website review video. 

7. Serving

When working as a restaurant server, you can schedule your shifts for evenings and weekends, or whenever you don’t have classes. If you’re taking evening classes, then just work the breakfast and lunch shifts. Some other perks are that you can make some decent money from tips and get discounts on food. 

7 Tips to Financing Graduate School

If you’re like millions of other aspiring graduate students in America, you’re probably considering borrowing money to pay for your degree. If that’s the case, we’re here to help you figure out how to borrow money in a way that’s smart, efficient, and strategic!

1. View Graduate School as an Investment
Making the decision to start a graduate level academic journey is the first step in achieving success for your preferred future, but the next major hurdle to jump through is to comprehend and plan for a financial commitment.
Perceiving graduate school as an investment for you, gives you a perspective that will guide you through the subsequent costs and commitments, both financial and personal.

2. Calculate the Current Costs of Higher Education
It’s easy to forget that the price of education continues to rise — so it may be more cost efficient for you to go to graduate school now rather than later. In fact, according to a report by JP Morgan Funds, higher education costs are rising faster than any other household expense in recent decades.

3. Ask for Employer Financial Support
As you plan the course for financing graduate school, use innovative resources that may be at your fingertips. Start by simply searching your company’s handbook or talking to your company or institution’s human resource department to find out additional information on advanced degree support.
Employee tuition reimbursement programs are increasing in popularity, especially for adults who desire to pursue graduate school. Many employers, looking to boost their collective skill set without hiring additional people, will sponsor all or part of an employee’s graduate school program through tuition reimbursement.
Last year, 58 percent of the 550 employers responding to a survey by the Society for Human Resource Management offered some form of financial assistance for grad school. For more tips on paying for graduate school visit U.S. News & World Report.

4. Do Innovative Searches for Funding Resources
By doing an innovative online search for additional funding resources, you will come across many corporations who have extensive tuition reimbursement opportunities.

5. Know that the FAFSA Applies to Grad Students Too
The fastest way to apply for aid is to visit the FAFSA.GOV website, which provides detailed information and step by-step instructions on how to begin the application process.

Make sure you have all the necessary documents and information you may need to fill out the FAFSA form. For example, you will need your social security number, your permanent resident card if you have one, any W-2 forms or records of money you earned for the previous year, and your tax records.

6. Understand Student Loan Programs
As explained on studentaid.ed.gov, the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan is the largest federal student loan program. The loans are divided between direct unsubsidized loans and direct PLUS Loans:

Direct Unsubsidized Loans
Eligible students may borrow up to $20,500 per school year. Graduate and professional students enrolled in certain health profession programs may receive additional direct unsubsidized loan amounts each academic year.
Direct PLUS Loans
Eligible graduate and professional degree students who need to borrow more than the maximum unsubsidized loan amounts to meet their education costs may apply for a PLUS loan.

7. Think About Tax Credit Benefits
There may be additional aid from other Federal Agencies. Search StudentAid.gov/types for additional tips.
Also, you may find that there are tax credit benefits for students enrolled in higher education. For information regarding education tax credits go to irs.gov.
Don’t let financing graduate school deter you from pursuing your graduate degree — and the future career you deserve!
Too many people lose out on securing financial aid because they don’t know where to search for resources or because they don’t think a financial-aid plan fits their unique needs, but you don’t have to be that person.
No matter your position, the potential for you to utilize the financial resources out there exists. Take the time to do the necessary research, put in the effort, and successfully finance the school of your dreams.

Further financial considerations for your decision to join Graduate School

HOW FAFSA WORKS FOR GRADUATE SCHOOL

Filling out the FAFSA application is the first step to receiving grants, loans, and work study funds provided from the Federal Government for domestic students and permanent residents.

The fastest way to apply for aid is to visit the FAFSA.GOV website, which provides detailed information and step-by-step instructions on how to begin the application process. Make sure you have all the necessary documents and information you may need to fill out the FAFSA form. For example, you will need your social security number, your permanent resident card if you have one, any W-2 forms or records of money you earned for the previous year, and your tax records,

The FAFSA site is available in English and Spanish. Online help is also available on the website.  Usually, the application process can be completed in 1/2 hour or less. There is a 3 minute introduction video available to view before filling out your application.

Students with exceptional financial need might qualify for Perkins Loans, which award up to $8000 annually and have a 5% interest rate. A Federal Perkins Loan is a need-based student loan offered by the US Department of Education to assist American College students in funding their post-secondary education.

Visit studentaid.ed.gov which provides info on the William D. Ford Federal Direct Loan – the largest federal student loan program. It offers direct unsubsidized loans and direct PLUS loans.

Also visit studentaid.gov/types for additional tips, and irs.gov for information on education tax credits you might be able to receive.

CONSIDERATIONS

Remember that the return on your personal and intellectual investment may be measured not only monetarily but also personally and professionally. You will sharpen your skills and deepen your understanding in and beyond your field, increase your network, build life long relationships and friendships which all will situate you for a purposeful life ahead.