OISS has been reaching out to the community for many years in various ways from organizing visits to Rice for middle and high school students through students visiting local schools to a semester long mentorship program. These events offer different opportunities for local students to learn about Rice, and to engage in many activities with Rice’s international students.
1. Receiving visitors on Rice campus
During their visits to Rice the students received programs that include greetings by university representatives, presentation on general admission requirements by the Office of Admission, campus tour conducted by the Welcome Center including a special introduction of the Fondren Library by librarians, and lunch with Rice’s international students in one of the undergraduate colleges. Other times students participated in the Annual Culture Fair by ADVANCE, under the Office of Multicultural Affairs, and they had opportunity to interact with members of several student clubs and organizations who presented information, displayed different cultural facts and artifacts, food and clothes on their tables.
- Sudents and their teachers visited Rice from Briarwood School and participated in ADVANCE’s Annual Culture Fair (March 14, 2014). This year’s theme was “The Arts” and were over 20 cultural clubs and organizations represented.
- Programs organized for Chinese exchange students and their teachers from St. John’s High School who have been visiting from Beijing No. 4 High School (total number of visitors: 16. February, 2011).
- Programs at the Rice Campus for 33 Chinese exchange visitors who have been visiting La Port High School from Nankai High School, Tianjin as well as educators and district administrators (total number of visitors: 55. February, 2011).
- Pin Oaks Middle School students visited Rice as part of their research projects which involved Rice’s international students’ responses (2005)
- OISS welcomed many students and their teachers on campus from Briarmeadow Charter School (2005)
- Luncheon organized for Special Olympics administrators and Special Olympics athletes from the Briarwood School and Rice Chinese students and scholars. The athletes were going to China to participate in the Special Olympics, and they learned about China from the Rice internationals during this luncheon meeting (2007). Article: Special Olympians and Rice Chinese Internationals develop special friendship, Rice World, Vol 24, No 1, p.7/Fall, 2007.
2. Local school visits
During International Education Week (IEW) OISS has usually organized numerous visits to local schools where Rice international students and scholars spoke about culture and facts of their home countries or gave special presentations to help hundreds of local students learn about Rice, different cultures, and science. These events inspired all parties including the students, their teachers and school administrators and our own Rice international students and scientists.
- Visit to Smaller Scholars Montessori Academy. Suman Khatiwada from Nepal and Arjun Prakash from India, graduate students in the Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science and the Department of Chemical Engineering, respectively, helped students learn about geography, musical instruments and traditional food through this interactive and fun event (IEW, November, 2010). Article: IEW celebrated all continents by Vanessa Uribe, Rice World, Vol 27, Issue 2, p. 7/Spring 2011
- Several international students and scholars from various fields of science have participated in a program called “Nano What”, when they introduced nanotechnology and its developments to middle school students (IEW 2006).
- Rice’s international students participated at the International Festival of St. Mark’s Episcopal School, a private elementary school which has been in partnership with OISS for 7 years (IEW 2004).
- A panel of 3 Rice students presented basic information about their field of science, what makes it interesting, how they got started and answered many questions at Briarmeadow Charter School (IEW 2004).
- Another panel of 3 Rice students visited Pin Oaks Middle School during IEW 2004, and gave similar presentations there. Article: Visiting a local school, Rice World, Vol. 19, No. 1, p. 2/Fall 2004
3. Mentorship Program
OISS in partnership with St. Stephen’s High School launched a pilot mentorship program where 11 St. Stephen’s international students were matched with Rice internationals based on their country of origin and/or spoken languages and met throughout the semester either at Rice or at St. Stephen’s to connect and discuss cultural and academic matters they wanted to share and talk about. Throughout the program the high school students were introduced to Rice, its beautiful environment and its international culture, and Rice students gained a unique mentoring experience (Fall 2010). Article: Rice International Students Mentor Local High School Students by Lily Lam. Rice at Large, Issue 15, p. 3. Spring 2011./Article: Culture of mentorship by Lily Lam. Rice World, Vol. 27, Issue 2/Spring 2011
4. Other activities
- Poster artwork of third graders from AWTY International School was displayed throughout campus during International Education Week (IEW) 2006. Article: International Education Week by Arie Wilson, Rice News, Nov. 2, 2006/Rice World Spring 2007, Vol. 23 No 2, page 3.