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Owl 69/70/75 Online
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Post: #41
RE: New Arts building
(08-28-2020 06:45 PM)ruowls Wrote:  I think you are missing a group. There is a group that wants Rice to be successful and are swaying Leebron and others to their way. And they quash any alternative viewpoint. And their guidance is not yielding the desired results.
A major component, and one you seem to be encouraging, is that Rice needs a major influx of money. What Rice needs is a major influx of intellectual capital. Certainly, increasing revenue is a key component. But, it can be done efficiently, like Boise State. You don't have to spend the most to get results and spending the most doesn't guarantee the best results. I think we can agree that Rice has set a limit to the amount of support that they will give. Rice needs to build a foundation within this budget that can then incrementally increase revenue to maintain and further increase success.
The goal should be to increase the intellectual capital that others don't have that others can't buy. This would separate Rice from the pack. Unfortunately, Rice has difficulty identifying intellectual capital that would differentiate itself from others.

There was a large movement at the time of the McKinsey study that very vocally said, "No to McKinsey, keep the status quo." My question to them was, "Why?" What was it about the then status quo, except Wayne Grahams baseball program, that was worth keeping? Not much, IMO. We need the kind of injection of intellectual capital that you suggest. But I don't see Rice as ready for, or interested in, such an injection.

There was a proposal circulated by what came to be known as the "group of 250" (I think that was the right number) that sought to spend about $1 million on a one-time basis and a smaller amount annually to improve the lot of football. I was copied on it, and my response was that every one of those was reasonable, now who was going go give the money? Oh, the BOT will just spend it from the endowment. I replied that I had a better (and more likely to happen) idea--just schedule LSU and either TexasU or aTM, just like we used to play all three back in the good old days that they. seemed to want to return to. "Oh we can't do that, we'll get killed, and that will destroy our program." Well, if we got that million or two for several years, and nobody else in CUSA did, and we spent it wisely, we could dominate CUSA, and that is step one to getting where we want to go.

There is a group (and I think there is a lot of overlap among the three groups mentioned here) that I think, very seriously, wants a return to the SWC and really aren't interested in any other result. And that one is not going to happen, for reasons that Rice cannot control. We used to run an athletic program by playing TexasU and aTm and LSU every year, 1 or 2 at home, and running the rest of the program off what those games brought in. Then LSU didn't come any more, and the crowds for TexasU and aTm got smaller, and then they didn't come either. And our athletic program faded from SWC to WAC to WAC-2 to CUSA to CUSA-2. The closest we could come to that today would be to play two of TexasU, aTm, and LSU as non-conference games, and also play UH, and turn the latter into a significant cross-town rivalry, what the Brits call a "Darby." That's not happening either.

What Rice has to do is take where they are now (CUSA-2) and manage that in a way that will lead ultimately to something better. I agree that an influx of intellectual capital is needed, but Rice seems interested only in physical capital. Somebody once asked me how many games I thought Nick Saban Ould win under the current Rice athletic setup. My answer was zero, because Nick Saban would not take the job under the current athletic setup.

When Paul Johnson was coaching at Annapolis, the Academy Superintendent issued a regulation that Midshipmen were not allowed to wear any audio playing devices while in uniform. The football players were upset about this. Johnson walked over to the Superintindent's office and dropped a ring of keys on his desk. "These are the keys to the athletic facilities. Football practice is at 3:30 and you're running it, because I quit." The regulation was quickly rescinded. Other than Todd Graham, Rice has never had any athletic department person with the guts to do something like that. And Todd unfortunately gets an F in ethics. When you don't know where you are going, the path of least resistance will get you there.
(This post was last modified: 08-29-2020 02:07 AM by Owl 69/70/75.)
08-29-2020 01:36 AM
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Owl 69/70/75 Online
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Post: #42
RE: New Arts building
(08-28-2020 10:42 PM)Tomball Owl Wrote:  
(08-28-2020 05:03 PM)OptimisticOwl Wrote:  I don't think it is anything purposeful. I highly doubt that when JK was hired, he was told "We want you come here and help us stay mediocre." And if he was, I doubt he would have taken the job.
And I doubt that Leebron was told a goal was to keep us mediocre athletically.
I think it is a matter of goals.
I think the goal has always beent become more and more prominent academically, to make Rice a top academic school, and committing time, effort and resources to that goal does not include putting time, effort, and resources into athletics.
So if our goal is not to become the best in this area, why keep at it? Time to get off the pot, so to speak.
Put in the effort to become good, or forget about it.
Is Rice getting any more prominent academically? It doesn’t appear so per the rankings.

To OO, I don't think it's intentional. I think it's more neglectful, and the athletic department has made itself easily neglected by failing to apply the kind of intellectual capital that Ruowls suggests. Agree totally with your last comment.

To Tomball, no it isn't, because it apparently doesn't know how. The quickest way to improve significantly would be to add a med school. Med schools bring in huge research dollars, and those drive the reputation of the university. I thought the Baylor Med idea made a lot of sense. But when it fell through, why not take the money that we were going to spend on Baylor and start our own? The timing was good--Baylor was having financial issues, there was a lot of dissension in the ranks, and they were moving hospitals. So there was an opportunity to pick off some quality faculty, much as Dr. Lovett had done from Princeton at the start, and there was an available teaching hospital with no med school. I think that could have been done successfully. A law school would not add as much cachet, but it would have been cheaper, and the collaboration opportunities with the Jones School and Baker Institute would have been massive.

I think Rice seems to think in terms of doing what somebody gives it money to do, instead of what is best for the university. My criticisms of the art building and opera house lie in that vein. They're both nice to have, but I don't see either one moving the needle a millimeter on the USN&WR scale (if that's what we care about).

In my ideal world, Rice would become Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou, plus a strong STEM emphasis, competitive big-time athletics, a med school, a law school, and the highest ranking possible outside the leftist echo chamber of "elite" higher education. I'd like to see it in the top 5 or so universities, and cheap enough to be always #1 in the best value rankings. If I had made billions, I'd spend about 4 or 5 of them to make that happen. But I didn't, so I won't.
(This post was last modified: 08-29-2020 05:32 PM by Owl 69/70/75.)
08-29-2020 02:06 AM
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Post: #43
RE: New Arts building
When I came to Rice, they were number 8.

I think it is goals. If the admin is choosing between spending money on recruiting professors or running backs, the prof will get the dough, since becoming top tier in athletics is not the goal, but becoming top tier in academics is.

Can’t say that is the wrong thing to try to do. A few, a very few, schools seem to be able to pursue both, but they all differ from Rice in significant ways.

I have been been a fan of Rice athletics for well more than half a century, through bad times and (relatively) good, but I think until they make athletics more of a priority, might as well become Cal Tech or U. Of Chicago.
08-29-2020 09:43 AM
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Post: #44
RE: New Arts building
(08-29-2020 02:06 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(08-28-2020 10:42 PM)Tomball Owl Wrote:  
(08-28-2020 05:03 PM)OptimisticOwl Wrote:  I don't think it is anything purposeful. I highly doubt that when JK was hired, he was told "We want you come here and help us stay mediocre." And if he was, I doubt he would have taken the job.
And I doubt that Leebron was told a goal was to keep us mediocre athletically.
I think it is a matter of goals.
I think the goal has always beent become more and more prominent academically, to make Rice a top academic school, and committing time, effort and resources to that goal does not include putting time, effort, and resources into athletics.
So if our goal is not to become the best in this area, why keep at it? Time to get off the pot, so to speak.
Put in the effort to become good, or forget about it.
Is Rice getting any more prominent academically? It doesn’t appear so per the rankings.

To OO, I don't think it's intentional. I think it's more neglectful, and the athletic department has made itself easily neglected by failing to apply the kind of intellectual capital that Ruowls suggests. Agree totally with your last comment.

To Tomball, no it isn't, because it apparently doesn't know how. The quickest way to improve significantly would be to add a med school. Med schools bring in huge research dollars, and those drive the reputation of the university. I thought the Baylor Med idea made a lot of sense. But when it fell through, why not take the money that we were going to spend on Baylor and start our own? The timing was good--Baylor was having financial issues, there was a lot of dissension in the ranks, and they were moving hospitals. So there was an opportunity to pick off some quality faculty, much as Dr. Lovett had done from Princeton at the start, and there was an available teaching hospital with no med school. I think that could have been done successfully. A law school would not add as much cachet, but it would have been cheaper, and the collaboration opportunities with the Jones School and Baker Institute would have been massive.

I think Rice seems to think in terms of doing what somebody gives it money to do, instead of what is best for the university. My criticisms of the art building and opera house lie in that vein. They're both nice to have, but I don't see either one moving the needle a millimeter on the USN&WR scale (if that's what we care about).

In my idea world, Rice would become Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou with a strong STEM emphasis, competitive big-time athletics, a med school, a law school, and the highest ranking possible outside the leftist echo chamber of "elite" higher education. I'd like to see it in the top 5 or so universities, and cheap enough to be always #1 in the best value rankings. If I had made billions, I'd spend about 4 or 5 of them to make that happen. But I didn't, so I won't.

In very simple terms our endowment is no longer there to fuel the academic and athletic aspirations of our students and student athletes, our students and student athletes are there to fuel our endowment. That's not a successful strategy and we have suffered on both fronts.
08-29-2020 10:18 AM
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Owl 69/70/75 Online
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Post: #45
RE: New Arts building
(08-29-2020 10:18 AM)mebehutchi Wrote:  In very simple terms our endowment is no longer there to fuel the academic and athletic aspirations of our students and student athletes, our students and student athletes are there to fuel our endowment. That's not a successful strategy and we have suffered on both fronts.

I think everything is about funding the endowment, and students just happen to be in the way.

I think Rice has always focused more on the size of the endowment than the quality of the product.
(This post was last modified: 08-29-2020 05:35 PM by Owl 69/70/75.)
08-29-2020 05:34 PM
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Post: #46
RE: New Arts building
(08-28-2020 07:09 PM)Almadenmike Wrote:  Also ...

Does anyone know the specific location "next door to the Moody Center" where the new Arts Building will be built?

Might it be a) south of Moody ... replacing the Rice Media Center? (If so, I hope the lovely vegetable garden stays.)?

Or, b) north of Moody, replacing the "Hess Parking Lot" and reducing the access/view of Reckling Park from College Way & Loop Road?

Or, c) somewhere else?

(Cf: https://csnbbs.com/thread-905244-post-16...id16960022 )

:-)

When I first read about it, "a" seemed like the intended location.
Rice really doesn't want to have to maintain the mEdio Cneter* any more.
If they don't tear it down to build its replacement, it will continue to wheeze along, held together by little more than nostalgia.

* hat tip to Mark Linimon, the Thresher's backpage editor for several years, who had to type up the Calendar every week. He had to type "Rice Media Center" on HAL, a lot, and discovered most of the possible typos along the way.
08-29-2020 10:48 PM
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Post: #47
RE: New Arts building
(08-29-2020 09:43 AM)OptimisticOwl Wrote:  When I came to Rice, they were number 8.

OO, do you recall which ranking publisher had us at #8?

According to this document, the first US News & World Report undergrad college ranking was in 1983. Rice first appeared in the third one (1988) at #12. In '89 we were 9th, then 10th and 16th the next two years (and so on).

This History of College Rankings webpage says the first rating of undergraduate schools was a 1957 article on the Chicago Tribune by Chesly Manly. Rice is not mentioned in this article -- "The Greatest Schools in the Nation," published on Easter Sunday (April 21) 1957, even in its separate list of the Top 10 engineering schools. (I'll be happy to send a copy of this article to those who can't see it on Newspapers.com. PM me your email address.)

Next was the first Gourman Report, published in 1967. Rice was #18 in that ranking.

(Note: There are many critiques of Gourman's publications. For example: 1) "The Gourman Fraud and the Commodification of Higher Education" (2018), 2) "A Self-Published College Guide Goes Big-Time, and Educators Cry Foul / They say 'The Gourman Report' is based on shoddy research that will confuse students" (1997), and 3) "How not to rank universities" (1985), for example. As an aside, a copy of the 1967-68 Gourman Report apparently resides at the University of Houston.)
(This post was last modified: 08-30-2020 01:03 AM by Almadenmike.)
08-30-2020 12:18 AM
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Almadenmike Online
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Post: #48
RE: New Arts building
(08-29-2020 10:48 PM)Grungy Wrote:  
(08-28-2020 07:09 PM)Almadenmike Wrote:  Also ...

Does anyone know the specific location "next door to the Moody Center" where the new Arts Building will be built?

Might it be a) south of Moody ... replacing the Rice Media Center? (If so, I hope the lovely vegetable garden stays.)?

Or, b) north of Moody, replacing the "Hess Parking Lot" and reducing the access/view of Reckling Park from College Way & Loop Road?

Or, c) somewhere else?

(Cf: https://csnbbs.com/thread-905244-post-16...id16960022 )

:-)

When I first read about it, "a" seemed like the intended location.
Rice really doesn't want to have to maintain the mEdio Cneter* any more.
If they don't tear it down to build its replacement, it will continue to wheeze along, held together by little more than nostalgia.

* hat tip to Mark Linimon, the Thresher's backpage editor for several years, who had to type up the Calendar every week. He had to type "Rice Media Center" on HAL, a lot, and discovered most of the possible typos along the way.

Thanks, Grungy. I hope the garden remains.

And as creator of the "Rice People's Calendar," back in the day, I'm delighted to see kudos being given to more recent Thresher calendar editors. :-)
08-30-2020 01:51 AM
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Grungy Offline
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Post: #49
RE: New Arts building
(08-24-2020 01:56 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  These things are cool.

But I just have this feeling that Rice the outstanding STEM institute is being converted to Rice the Ivy-ish liberal arts (with the emphasis on liberal) university. I can't say that's the Rice that I would want to attend today.

"...Letters, Science and Art."
08-30-2020 10:17 AM
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Post: #50
RE: New Arts building
(08-30-2020 10:17 AM)Grungy Wrote:  
(08-24-2020 01:56 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  These things are cool.

But I just have this feeling that Rice the outstanding STEM institute is being converted to Rice the Ivy-ish liberal arts (with the emphasis on liberal) university. I can't say that's the Rice that I would want to attend today.

"...Letters, Science and Art."

The Ivies are in the process of tossing away their franchise. Let’s hope Rice doesn’t do the same.
08-30-2020 05:33 PM
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Owl 69/70/75 Online
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Post: #51
RE: New Arts building
(08-30-2020 10:17 AM)Grungy Wrote:  
(08-24-2020 01:56 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  These things are cool.
But I just have this feeling that Rice the outstanding STEM institute is being converted to Rice the Ivy-ish liberal arts (with the emphasis on liberal) university. I can't say that's the Rice that I would want to attend today.
"...Letters, Science and Art."

It's the "liberal" part of "liberal arts" that I find unappealing.

My ideal Rice would be Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou, with world-class STEM and major intercollegiate athletics, a med school and a law school with the impact upon rankings that would go with having those things, and virtually permanent status as #1 value-for-money. Rice isn't going to be that. Rice obviously doesn't want to be that. It appears to be running away from at least several of those points.

I agree with ranfin. The Ivies are punting away their unique franchises. And I see Rice doing much of the same.
(This post was last modified: 08-31-2020 09:33 AM by Owl 69/70/75.)
08-31-2020 09:27 AM
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Post: #52
RE: New Arts building
I hate to sound like a broken record, but I'll say it one more time.

Rice stayed too small for too long. Look at every other top tier school. Then look at Rice.

What others say:
"Rice University is an intimately sized research university in the heart of Houston, Texas, with a focus on undergraduates..."

My matriculating class was ~600. Now I guess it's closer to 1000 and graduate students totaling 3000. That's some progress I guess.

The University of Houston is building a medical school.

The good news is Rice has an Opera House (and a new Arts building).

(Don't ask me to contribute to Rice if they have money to build an Opera House.)
09-03-2020 03:11 AM
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Post: #53
RE: New Arts building
(09-03-2020 03:11 AM)MerseyOwl Wrote:  I hate to sound like a broken record, but I'll say it one more time.

Rice stayed too small for too long. Look at every other top tier school. Then look at Rice.

What others say:
"Rice University is an intimately sized research university in the heart of Houston, Texas, with a focus on undergraduates..."

My matriculating class was ~600. Now I guess it's closer to 1000 and graduate students totaling 3000. That's some progress I guess.

The University of Houston is building a medical school.

The good news is Rice has an Opera House (and a new Arts building).

(Don't ask me to contribute to Rice if they have money to build an Opera House.)

The funding for the Opera House was donated.
09-03-2020 07:18 AM
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Post: #54
RE: New Arts building
(08-31-2020 09:27 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(08-30-2020 10:17 AM)Grungy Wrote:  
(08-24-2020 01:56 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  These things are cool.
But I just have this feeling that Rice the outstanding STEM institute is being converted to Rice the Ivy-ish liberal arts (with the emphasis on liberal) university. I can't say that's the Rice that I would want to attend today.
"...Letters, Science and Art."

It's the "liberal" part of "liberal arts" that I find unappealing.

My ideal Rice would be Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou, with world-class STEM and major intercollegiate athletics, a med school and a law school with the impact upon rankings that would go with having those things, and virtually permanent status as #1 value-for-money. Rice isn't going to be that. Rice obviously doesn't want to be that. It appears to be running away from at least several of those points.

I agree with ranfin. The Ivies are punting away their unique franchises. And I see Rice doing much of the same.

Some folks appear to believe that Rice still has a future in STEM:

https://news.rice.edu/2020/09/02/largest...institute/
Quote:The Robert A. Welch Foundation has announced the largest single gift in the history of Rice University to establish The Welch Institute, a “sweeping strategic partnership” on campus that will focus on world-leading advanced materials research.

The $100 million underwriting the new institution will empower Rice researchers across campus, as well as colleagues from around the world, to accelerate discovery, design and manufacture of new materials for the benefit of all.
09-03-2020 07:53 AM
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RE: New Arts building
(09-03-2020 07:53 AM)temchugh Wrote:  
(08-31-2020 09:27 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(08-30-2020 10:17 AM)Grungy Wrote:  
(08-24-2020 01:56 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  These things are cool.
But I just have this feeling that Rice the outstanding STEM institute is being converted to Rice the Ivy-ish liberal arts (with the emphasis on liberal) university. I can't say that's the Rice that I would want to attend today.
"...Letters, Science and Art."

It's the "liberal" part of "liberal arts" that I find unappealing.

My ideal Rice would be Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou, with world-class STEM and major intercollegiate athletics, a med school and a law school with the impact upon rankings that would go with having those things, and virtually permanent status as #1 value-for-money. Rice isn't going to be that. Rice obviously doesn't want to be that. It appears to be running away from at least several of those points.

I agree with ranfin. The Ivies are punting away their unique franchises. And I see Rice doing much of the same.

Some folks appear to believe that Rice still has a future in STEM:

https://news.rice.edu/2020/09/02/largest...institute/
Quote:The Robert A. Welch Foundation has announced the largest single gift in the history of Rice University to establish The Welch Institute, a “sweeping strategic partnership” on campus that will focus on world-leading advanced materials research.

The $100 million underwriting the new institution will empower Rice researchers across campus, as well as colleagues from around the world, to accelerate discovery, design and manufacture of new materials for the benefit of all.

(08-24-2020 04:39 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(08-24-2020 02:55 PM)MartelOwl_08 Wrote:  It's still an outstanding STEM institute.

I hope it is. That's good news.

I do think it has drifted substantially further left than it was in my undergraduate days. And that's not a change which I like.

It's a fair point that you may prefer a less left-leaning populace, but STEM and political inclinations are two independent metrics. It's possible to remain a strong STEM institute regardless of whether or not they invest in non-professional and non-STEM fields. Investment in these other pursuits does not indicate deprioritization of the sciences nor dilution of intellectual resources, but I'd argue that they make a stronger, richer, more well-rounded intellectual community. The big investment TEMchugh cited is just proof of what I was saying, that Rice is still a leading STEM institute in the eyes of the public.

I'm wondering why you think Rice is no longer as strong in STEM as back in the day. I'm wondering if it's perhaps because we haven't had any new Nobel Laureates from among our faculty and alumni in a little while, but we didn't have any of these neither back when you were in school (assuming I'm reading the 69/70/75 in your user handle correctly). I'm also wondering if it has to do with the types of STEM fields (bio/biomedical tends to pull a lot more funding now compared to back in the day, versus the loss or merging of some fields such as nuclear/petroleum into other disciplines).
09-03-2020 11:32 AM
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RiceLad15 Online
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Post: #56
RE: New Arts building
(09-03-2020 07:53 AM)temchugh Wrote:  
(08-31-2020 09:27 AM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(08-30-2020 10:17 AM)Grungy Wrote:  
(08-24-2020 01:56 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  These things are cool.
But I just have this feeling that Rice the outstanding STEM institute is being converted to Rice the Ivy-ish liberal arts (with the emphasis on liberal) university. I can't say that's the Rice that I would want to attend today.
"...Letters, Science and Art."

It's the "liberal" part of "liberal arts" that I find unappealing.

My ideal Rice would be Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou, with world-class STEM and major intercollegiate athletics, a med school and a law school with the impact upon rankings that would go with having those things, and virtually permanent status as #1 value-for-money. Rice isn't going to be that. Rice obviously doesn't want to be that. It appears to be running away from at least several of those points.

I agree with ranfin. The Ivies are punting away their unique franchises. And I see Rice doing much of the same.

Some folks appear to believe that Rice still has a future in STEM:

https://news.rice.edu/2020/09/02/largest...institute/
Quote:The Robert A. Welch Foundation has announced the largest single gift in the history of Rice University to establish The Welch Institute, a “sweeping strategic partnership” on campus that will focus on world-leading advanced materials research.

The $100 million underwriting the new institution will empower Rice researchers across campus, as well as colleagues from around the world, to accelerate discovery, design and manufacture of new materials for the benefit of all.

I was very happy to see this donation. Is there a connection between Rice and the organization, outside of Houston?

I'm still holding out hope that the CEVE department one day gets a similar gift.
09-03-2020 11:41 AM
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Post: #57
RE: New Arts building
(09-03-2020 11:32 AM)MartelOwl_08 Wrote:  It's a fair point that you may prefer a less left-leaning populace, but STEM and political inclinations are two independent metrics. It's possible to remain a strong STEM institute regardless of whether or not they invest in non-professional and non-STEM fields. Investment in these other pursuits does not indicate deprioritization of the sciences nor dilution of intellectual resources, but I'd argue that they make a stronger, richer, more well-rounded intellectual community. The big investment TEMchugh cited is just proof of what I was saying, that Rice is still a leading STEM institute in the eyes of the public.
I'm wondering why you think Rice is no longer as strong in STEM as back in the day. I'm wondering if it's perhaps because we haven't had any new Nobel Laureates from among our faculty and alumni in a little while, but we didn't have any of these either back when you were in school (assuming I'm reading the 69/70/75 in your user handle correctly). I'm also wondering if it has to do with the types of STEM fields (bio/biomedical tends to pull a lot more funding now compared to back in the day, versus the loss or merging of some fields such as nuclear/petroleum into other disciplines).

I don't think I've ever expressed any opinion that Rice is no longer as strong in STEM as back in the day. To be clear, I have no basis for believing that and I do not believe that.

I have for some time said that Rice needs a medical school, precisely because the preponderance of bio/biomedical research would cause a medical school both to secure greater research funding and to enhance the university's reputation. I supported the Baylor Med deal, and when it fell through, I thought the university should just go ahead and start one. The timing seemed optimum. Baylor was switching hospitals, so there was a teaching hospital across the street without an academic tenant, and many of Baylor's docs were in revolt, so there was a great chance to pick up a bunch of highly regarded faculty in a short time. But for some reason, Rice didn't.

I've said many times that I would love for Rice to become Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou as far as political lean, and that clearly isn't happening. I would say that in my era the STEM students were typically more conservative than the Academs. Many of them were going to go to work for oil companies, and they understandably didn't want to upset their gravy train.
09-03-2020 02:19 PM
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Post: #58
RE: New Arts building
(09-03-2020 02:19 PM)Owl 69/70/75 Wrote:  
(09-03-2020 11:32 AM)MartelOwl_08 Wrote:  It's a fair point that you may prefer a less left-leaning populace, but STEM and political inclinations are two independent metrics. It's possible to remain a strong STEM institute regardless of whether or not they invest in non-professional and non-STEM fields. Investment in these other pursuits does not indicate deprioritization of the sciences nor dilution of intellectual resources, but I'd argue that they make a stronger, richer, more well-rounded intellectual community. The big investment TEMchugh cited is just proof of what I was saying, that Rice is still a leading STEM institute in the eyes of the public.
I'm wondering why you think Rice is no longer as strong in STEM as back in the day. I'm wondering if it's perhaps because we haven't had any new Nobel Laureates from among our faculty and alumni in a little while, but we didn't have any of these either back when you were in school (assuming I'm reading the 69/70/75 in your user handle correctly). I'm also wondering if it has to do with the types of STEM fields (bio/biomedical tends to pull a lot more funding now compared to back in the day, versus the loss or merging of some fields such as nuclear/petroleum into other disciplines).

I don't think I've ever expressed any opinion that Rice is no longer as strong in STEM as back in the day. To be clear, I have no basis for believing that and I do not believe that.

I have for some time said that Rice needs a medical school, precisely because the preponderance of bio/biomedical research would cause a medical school both to secure greater research funding and to enhance the university's reputation. I supported the Baylor Med deal, and when it fell through, I thought the university should just go ahead and start one. The timing seemed optimum. Baylor was switching hospitals, so there was a teaching hospital across the street without an academic tenant, and many of Baylor's docs were in revolt, so there was a great chance to pick up a bunch of highly regarded faculty in a short time. But for some reason, Rice didn't.

I've said many times that I would love for Rice to become Hillsdale-on-the-Bayou as far as political lean, and that clearly isn't happening. I would say that in my era the STEM students were typically more conservative than the Academs. Many of them were going to go to work for oil companies, and they understandably didn't want to upset their gravy train.

Chip, I hear what you're saying, BUT (1) the Baylor deal was a financial disaster for Rice and it's highly unlikely Baylor would have voted to allow it to happen, and (2) the Bioscience Research Collaborative (BRC) is thriving and has brought in a great deal of bio/biomedical research funding.
09-03-2020 02:34 PM
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Post: #59
RE: New Arts building
According to my brief (very brief) discussions with Leebron...the costs of starting a law school with a faculty that is comparable to the current Rice Faculty is somewhere in the neighborhood of $650MM to $700MM. The costs for a comparable medical school would be twice that.

I agree with the proposition that Rice needs a medical and/or law school, but Rice needs such a school that is comparable with the current Rice rankings...and that is very expensive.
09-03-2020 03:18 PM
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Post: #60
RE: New Arts building
(09-03-2020 02:34 PM)waltgreenberg Wrote:  Chip, I hear what you're saying, BUT (1) the Baylor deal was a financial disaster for Rice and it's highly unlikely Baylor would have voted to allow it to happen, and (2) the Bioscience Research Collaborative (BRC) is thriving and has brought in a great deal of bio/biomedical research funding.

(09-03-2020 03:18 PM)Houston Owl 2 Wrote:  According to my brief (very brief) discussions with Leebron...the costs of starting a law school with a faculty that is comparable to the current Rice Faculty is somewhere in the neighborhood of $650MM to $700MM. The costs for a comparable medical school would be twice that.

I agree with the proposition that Rice needs a medical and/or law school, but Rice needs such a school that is comparable with the current Rice rankings...and that is very expensive.

iirc, we offered $1byn for Baylor.

Walt, I'm wondering (not disagreeing, I don't know) why you say it was a bad deal. My understanding was even less direct than Houston's, but I understood it to be a good deal, for what it was.
09-03-2020 04:02 PM
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