Dateline Rice for April 9, 2012 (Weekend Edition)


Rice to open its doors for UnConvention
As part of its centennial year celebration, Rice University will open its campus up to all Houstonians April 12-14 for the UnConvention, the most unconventional open house in Rice’s history. Linda Thrane, vice president for public affairs, and Bill Courtney, director of marketing, are quoted.
West University Examiner (This article also appeared in the River Oaks Examiner, the Memorial Examiner and the Bellaire Examiner.)


Crisis for US science is looming, physicists warn
The United States is at risk of ceding its leadership in science, a number of physicists agreed April 2, though there was less of a consensus on a clear solution to the problem. Neal Lane, the Malcolm Gillis University Professor and senior fellow in science and technology policy at the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, is quoted. (This article also appeared on,,, and

Don’t touch my textbook
A Texas community college district’s move toward standardized and electronic textbooks has raised the hackles of faculty members, who say the process threatens academic freedom and instructor autonomy because individual sections will be limited in their ability to have individual book requirements. Rice is mentioned.
Inside Higher Ed

Rice University student columnist compares ‘period sex’ to shark week, bloodbaths, airplane food
Articles discuss a Rice Thresher advice column.
College advice columnist ‘immensely disgusted’ by period sex


GOP race for DA getting nasty, even if candidates are not
Mark Jones, the Joseph D. Jamail Chair in Latin American Studies, professor and chair of political science and fellow in political science at the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy, is quoted in an article about the race for Harris County District Attorney. Jones is also quoted in news items about the GOP primary race, the Texas redistricting lawsuit, the impact of religion on Hispanic voting behavior and a dispute between Britain and Argentina over the Falkland Islands. An English translation of the La Voz article is not available.
Houston Chronicle
The high cost and burden of the Section Five preclearance process
Religion and Latinos
La Voz
Falklands row could hit UK’s South American ambitions
International Business Times

Asia Society ready to show off new building
An article about the new Asia Society Texas Center mentions that Kim Davenport, director of the Rice Gallery, will serve as guest curator of the center’s exhibit, "Contemporary Asian Art: Texas Connections."
Houston Chronicle

Rice supercomputer less interested in conquering the world, more concerned with earthquakes and genetic mapping
Rice University announced that it has acquired the state’s first Blue Gene supercomputer, allowing it to further investigate the molecular basis of disease. Gary Kidney, director of academic and research computing, is quoted.

InView Technology secures $250,000
Camera technology developer InView Technology has received $250,000 of $4.2 million of planned financing. The article notes that InView’s camera technology was developed at Rice.
Austin Business Journal

Police seek suspect in armed robbery attempt on Rice campus
An article reports on an attempted robbery that occurred last week north of Rice Stadium.


Programming computers to help computer programmers
Computer scientists from Rice University, the University of Pennsylvania and seven other institutions are teaming up to address one of the greatest ironies of the information age: While computers and robots have automated the manufacture of thousands of products, the software that allows them to do this is still written mostly by hand. Lydia Kavraki, the Noah Harding Professor of Computer Science and professor of bioengineering, is quoted.
ACM TechNews
ExCAPE team to automate computer programming
EE Times India


Elmira churches break racial barriers: Black ministers lead mostly white congregations
Research by Michael Emerson, the Allyn and Gladys Cline Professor of Sociology and co-director of the Kinder Institute for Urban Research, is cited in an article about two predominantly white United Methodist churches in Elmira, N.Y., that are currently led by black pastors.
Elmira Star-Gazette (N.Y.) (This article also appeared in the Binghampton Press & Sun-Bulletin, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle and the Ithaca Journal.)

Hispanic voting gains are slipping
The national Hispanic population is soaring while voter registration is declining, experts who study voting trends have found recently. Steve Murdock, the Allyn and Gladys Cline Professor of Sociology and a former director of the U.S. Census Bureau, is quoted.
Polk County Democrat (Fla.)

More does not equal better in the nation’s universities
An op-ed about politics in education mentions that three cancer researchers from the University of California, San Diego relocated to Rice.
Columbus Dispatch (Ohio) (This op-ed also appeared on and

In Houston’s ‘tunnel,’ he shines God’s light
Alumnus Lee Hsia ’95 is featured in an article about Houston’s First Baptist Church downtown campus. (Sacramento, Calif.)

WVU alum and honoree Robert McNabb part of speaker series April 12
An article reporting that Robert McNabb will be part of the West Virginia University College of Business and Economics 60th Anniversary Speaker Series mentions that he serves on the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School College of Business’ Council of Overseers.
West Virginia State Journal

College grad contest could bring Houston $1 million
Alumnus James Casey ’11 joined Houston Mayor Annise Parker to launch the My Degree Counts initiative.
Imperial Valley Press (Calif.) (This article also appeared on [Dallas].)

Breaking the glass beaker
Rice research is cited in an article about female representation in the sciences.


Rice blanks Tulane 5-0 to claim C-USA series
Articles recap a baseball series between Rice and Tulane University.
Cypress Times (Texas)
Rice falls at Tulane 7-2
Cypress Times (Texas) (Coverage of this baseball series also appeared in the Biloxi Sun-Herald and twice each in the New Orleans Times-Picayune, and

Rice’s Fitzsimmons follows soccer dream overseas
Alumna Catherine Fitzsimmons ’11 has signed a professional contract to play for Forfar Farmington of the Scottish Women’s Premier League.
Houston Chronicle

Rice’s Mcnamara earns two Side-Out Foundation awards
Brown College senior Laurie McNamara is the recipient of two honors from the Side-Out Foundation.
Cypress Times (Texas)

Nationals prospect Anthony Rendon suffers ankle sprain
Articles report on an injury sustained by former Rice standout Anthony Rendon.
Third-base prospect Rendon suffers ankle injury
Prospect Rendon injured during Potomac’s 7-2 loss at Lynchburg

Clairemont pole-vaulter leads locals at Arcadia meet
Rice is mentioned in an article about a Clairemont High School student-athlete.


A bit touchy: Plants’ insect defenses activated by touch
A new study by Rice University scientists reveals that plants can use the sense of touch to fight off fungal infections and insects. The study, which will be published in the April 24 issue of Current Biology, finds that plant defenses are enhanced when plants are touched.

‘Nanobubbles’ plus chemotherapy equals single-cell cancer targeting
Using light-harvesting nanoparticles to convert laser energy into "plasmonic nanobubbles," researchers at Rice University, the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and Baylor College of Medicine are developing new methods to inject drugs and genetic payloads directly into cancer cells. In tests on drug-resistant cancer cells, the researchers found that delivering chemotherapy drugs with nanobubbles was up to 30 times more deadly to cancer cells than traditional drug treatment and required less than one-tenth the clinical dose.

Students focus on creating a better cervical collar
Undergraduate students at Rice University have come up with what they hope will prove to be a better and safer version of cervical collars to stabilize the heads and necks of accident victims. Cervical collars have been in common use since their introduction during the Vietnam War.

About Patrick McLaughlin

Patrick McLaughlin is a news assistant in Rice University's Office of Public Affairs. Patrick is responsible for production of the daily newsletter Dateline Rice and maintaining databases of metrics of mentions of Rice in the news media.