September 02, 2004
Rice - The next great university?

Brian Leiter comments on Rice's new President and gives his thoughts on how it can beef up its humanities departments. Check it out.

One comment, since I know my Rice friends will make note of this:

Rice's gross endowment ranks 17th in the nation, just behind Duke, and ahead of Cornell, Vanderbilt, Johns Hopkins, Brown, NYU, and many others. More significant is that the value of its endowment per student is $640,569, making Rice the 12th wealthiest school in the country...[T]he endowment is used, in part, to keep the tuition relatively low compared to peer schools. That is plainly an advantage in terms of maintaining an outstanding student body. But one imagines that some of this great wealth could also be utilized to strengthen the faculty in some target areas.

George Rupp, the president who preceded the outgoing Malcolm Gillis, is widely reviled among Owls of my age bracket for the tuition hikes he instigated as part of his plan to make Rice more of a "world class" university. What Leiter proposes with the endowment should not have anywhere near that kind of effect on tuition, but the subject is a very touchy one to many recent alumni. Given that President Leebron has already been the cause of some grumbling among current students, he'd be wise to tread carefully here.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on September 02, 2004 to Elsewhere in Houston | TrackBack